The Slate Starter is a daily first look at to get your daily fantasy basketball lineup-building process started before lock tonight. Each day, we will go through some of the best NBA DFS picks, top stacks and optimal lineup construction for DraftKings and FanDuel. Be sure to check Awesemo’s NBA Starting Lineups page, as it will be updated throughout the day as the NBA injury reports are released and breaking news surfaces.
Let’s dive into some of the top studs on Friday’s nine-game slate.
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Giannis Antetokounmpo, F/C, Milwaukee Bucks
The Bucks have gotten off to a slow start this season, winning just four of their first eight games. That said, it hasn’t been Antetokounmpo’s fault. He’s put together his usual dominant per-minute production, averaging 1.78 DraftKings points per minute. That’s the top mark on the slate by a significant margin.
The Bucks are expected to be a bit less shorthanded on Friday. Jrue Holiday is probable after missing the past five games with an ankle injury, but that shouldn’t have a massive impact on Antetokounmpo. He’s actually increased his usage rate in 26 minutes while sharing the court with Holiday this season, resulting in an average of 1.86 DraftKings points per minute. Antetokounmpo is in a subpar spot vs. the Knicks, but expect him to dominate the projections from a raw points perspective.
Stephen Curry, PG, Golden State Warriors
Curry stands out as an elite value on FanDuel on Friday. He’s just the sixth-most expensive player, while he’s second-most expensive on DraftKings. Curry is a better fit on DraftKings given the 3-point bonus, but that kind of pricing discrepancy is still very appealing.
Curry is coming arguably his worst game of the year, finishing with just 40.1 FanDuel points over 35.4 minutes vs. the Hornets. He’s been marred in a cold shooting streak over his past five games, making just 40.2% from the field and 34.3% from 3-point range. Curry was significantly better in both departments last season.
I’ll be interested in seeing Curry’s projected ownership. If he’s going to be overlooked on FanDuel, I’ll be ready to fire. He’s outscored his implied point total by an average of +3.45 points with a comparable price tag since the start of last year.
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Karl-Anthony Towns, C, Minnesota Timberwolves
The Timberwolves are dealing with an injury to D’Angelo Russell at the moment, which makes their star big man a bit more appealing than usual. He didn’t exactly take advantage of that absence in their last game, scoring just 45.75 DraftKings points over 36.2 minutes, but he still carries some additional upside. He’s increased his usage rate by +1.9% with Russell off the court this season.
This game between the Timberwolves and Clippers also has some sneaky shootout potential. The Clippers have been a solid defensive team to start the year, but they’ve also played at the seventh-fastest pace. The Timberwolves rank eighth in pace, so this game could feature plenty of potential.
Towns is a player I’ll be eyeing in the Awesemo Player Prop tool. He’s a player I’m interested in if his scoring prop owns a favorable grade.
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Our daily fantasy basketball projections are updated regularly, including whenever any relevant news breaks. Looking for more NBA DFS help and the top NBA DFS picks for today? View our Yahoo! NBA ownership, our FanDuel ownership projections and our DraftKings ownership. Check out our DFS basketball rankings for fantasy points and values that are derived directly from Alex Baker's own NBA daily projections. We also have Yahoo! rankings, FanDuel ownership rankings and DraftKings rankings for today's slate.
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