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 Wednesday’s slate.
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NBA DFS Picks: Values + Fades for September 2
Value Pick: George Hill
DraftKings $4,300, FanDuel $4,400, Yahoo $10
With Eric Bledsoe out on Monday, Hill moved into the starting lineup with a great opportunity to produce value. He flopped in a pretty big way, although there were some encouraging signs for today. Most significantly, he played 36 minutes and was on the court in crunch time. Hill also had less ownership than expected given that it was a two-game slate without much value. In addition, his price remains cheap, and Bledsoe is questionable to play again.
It is important to note that Hill is only a good value play if Bledsoe is out. Since Bledsoe is questionable at the time I am writing this, I am leaning towards thinking he won’t play, but this is up in the air. This is a slate with a few expensive options to pay up for and no value, so it’s hard to ignore Hill if he starts since we can assume he would play around 36 minutes again. For the season, he averaged 19.52 DraftKings points in 22 minutes per game. At the same per-minute production, the expectation for Hill is around 30 fantasy points if he gets the same workload as last game. Pat Connaughton played 25 minutes last game, making him the potential pivot play off of Hill if his ownership gets out of control.
Stud Pick: Giannis Antetokounmpo
DraftKings $11,400, FanDuel $11,500, Yahoo $56
Speaking of players who underperformed in Game 1, we did not get a vintage Giannis game. He played 36 minutes, which is the most he played all playoffs, but underwhelmed from a fantasy and actual basketball perspective. Antetokounmpo put up a playoff-low 28.5% usage rating and disappeared down the stretch. Even though Bam Adebayo is probably one of the players in the league most capable of defending Giannis, I don’t buy that the reigning MVP is going to struggle throughout the series. A bounce-back game from Giannis feels like the most likely outcome, and his performance from Monday could reduce his ownership a bit.
If Bledsoe ends up sitting, Antetokounmpo stands to benefit. With Bledsoe off the court, Giannis scores nearly two DraftKings points per minute with a 39.1% usage rating. This is why I think Giannis is in line for more usage in Game 2 than what he had in Game 1. Even if Bledsoe plays, Antetokounmpo put up a 37.4% usage rating for the season. It’s easy to look at Game 1 and overreact or draw massive conclusions, but think about the first round of the playoffs. The Bucks struggled and lost the first game to the Magic before coming back and winning the next four games, all by at least 14 points.
Fade Pick: Jeff Green
DraftKings $4,900, FanDuel $5,100, Yahoo $14
Green’s playing time dried up in a big way last game. All postseason, I found it odd that Green and Robert Covington were splitting minutes. This seemed like something that had to change. Houston built its small-ball team after trading Clint Capela for Covington. The combination of Covington’s defense and 3-point shooting is vital for the team to work. Finally, Covington played the majority of the minutes last game, which I expect to stick going forward. Covington saw 38 minutes of action with Green playing just 18. Unless Covington gets into foul trouble, it’s hard for me to envision Green playing big minutes tonight.
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