NBA playoff action is underway, and there is NBA DFS on DraftKings, FanDuel and SuperDraft. Greg Ehrenberg looks at some NBA DFS Picks to build around and fade for the Thursday, Sept. 3, slate.
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NBA DFS Picks: Values + Fades for 9/3
Value Pick: Montrezl Harrell
DraftKings $4,400, FanDuel $4,900, Yahoo $15
I am not totally sure what to expect from Harrell’s minutes going forward. After he played 23 minutes and scored 37.25 DraftKings points against the Mavericks in Game 5 of the first round, I thought his minutes would escalate going forward. Instead, Harrell played just 15 minutes in Game 6 and was a dud for fantasy. Harrell was clearly out of shape, and the hope here is that his conditioning is improved now that he’s spent a few weeks in the bubble.
If playing normal minutes, the price tag on Harrell is clearly too low. For the season, he averaged 30.81 DraftKings points coming off the bench and was normally priced in $6,000 to $7,000 range. Despite somewhat risky playing time, the upside is what I am after here. With so few cheap players on this slate presenting a realistic chance for ceiling, Harrell is one of the only value plays with slate-breaking potential.
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Stud Pick: Paul George
DraftKings $8,200, FanDuel $7,700, Yahoo $33
I am curious to see where the ownership lands on George. As of now, I am assuming that he will end up as a somewhat contrarian play relative to the other top options on the slate. If this is the case, George is a player I will target. There is a ton of public sentiment against him due to some poor recent playoff performances, but it’s not like he is that terrible of a performer in the playoffs for his career. For reference, he shoots 35.2% from 3 in the playoffs in his career, and Damian Lillard shoots 35.6%. The narrative is that Lillard is a playoff performer while George isn’t.
Something else to consider is that I am not really sure who will end up guarding George for most of the game. Gary Harris is back, but he’s still playing limited minutes. There is also a chance we see Michael Porter play against George on some possessions, and I doubt that will go well for Denver. Matched up against Porter in a bubble game a couple of weeks ago, George ended up scoring 27 points in a Clippers win. Overall, the pricing on George is about fair, which is true for just about everybody on this slate. Give me George in NBA DFS if the public looks to avoid him.
Fade Pick: Jamal Murray
DraftKings $9,300, FanDuel $9,000, Yahoo $37
It looks like Murray is taking a leap during the playoffs. Coming into the postseason, he was considered a good player, but was getting paid too much. After a handful of games, the narrative flipped in the totally opposite direction. We are seeing people call Murray the best player on the Nuggets over Nikola Jokic now. I like Murray and don’t have an issue with him as a player, but he’s too expensive for NBA DFS tonight. He played great against the Jazz when making nearly 60% of his 3s, and it looks like we saw some of the regression start to his Murray in Game 7. Despite a win for Denver, Murray struggled from the field and made just 7-of-21 from the field. Going up against the Clippers, I think he will struggle to put up some of the same efficiency stats from the first round.
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