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Friday NBA DFS Slate Starter: First Look DraftKings & FanDuel Lineup Advice Today | 3/11/22




LeBron James was absolutely loving the bad blood between Kevin Durant and Joel Embiid during the marquee matchup on Thursday night in Philly

The Slate Starter is a daily first look at the day’s NBA slate 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, values and sleepers 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 players who stand out as key options on Friday’s 10-game NBA slate.

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Want to see how your lineup stacked up against yesterday’s winning NBA DFS lineups for DraftKings, FanDuel and Yahoo fantasy basketball? Check out Awesemo’s Optimal Lineup Review, which uses Fantasy Cruncher Rewind to analyze the winning plays from the night before.

Be sure to check out the Eric Lindquist and Rayen Patnaik every morning with the NBA Slate Starter Podcast, where they give you the best first-look NBA DFS analysis and daily fantasy advice to start your process.

DraftKings & FanDuel NBA DFS Lineup Advice Today

LeBron James, PG/SF, Los Angeles Lakers

Desperate. That is how James described the Lakers’ situation following a massive comeback win over the Warriors last Saturday. Unfortunately, the team has dropped two games since then, so their backs remain against the wall for Friday’s matchup vs. the Wizards. They’re down to just ninth place in the Western Conference standings, and with one of the most demanding remaining schedules in basketball, this is a borderline must-win contest.

With that in mind, expect to see LeBron take things up a notch. He’s carried a massive workload for the Lakers all season, but he’s been outstanding in his past two games. He’s racked up at least 71.0 DraftKings points in each, and he played more than 45 minutes in an overtime loss in his last contest. LeBron has averaged 1.53 DraftKings points per minute in 25 games without Anthony Davis this season, so he has massive upside if he’s going to see that much playing time.

Friday’s slate is missing some of the usual top studs – Giannis Antetokounmpo, Joel Embiid, and Nikola Jokic – so expect to see LeBron near the top of our NBA Projections.

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Donovan Mitchell, SG, Utah Jazz

Mitchell can occasionally be a bit of an overlooked superstar. He’s not the same caliber of fantasy producer as the best players in the league, but he’s still averaged a strong 1.28 DraftKings points per minute this season.

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There are reasons to believe he can improve on that mark on Friday. For starters, the Jazz are in an excellent spot vs. the Spurs, who rank fourth in pace and 19th in defensive efficiency. The Jazz are currently implied for 119.0 points, which is the third-highest mark on the slate.

The Jazz will also be without Bojan Bogdanovic. He ranks third among the team’s regulars in usage, and Mitchell has been one of the biggest beneficiaries when he’s been off the court this season. Mitchell has increased his usage rate by a team-high +3.2% in that situation, resulting in an average of 1.37 DraftKings points per minute.

If Mitchell’s ownership projection is too low, he’ll stand out as an outstanding leverage option in the Boom/Bust Probability tool.

Devonte’ Graham, PG/SG, New Orleans Pelicans

The Pelicans are trying to catch the Lakers in the standings, but they will be without two of their best players on Friday. Brandon Ingram is expected to miss the next 7 to 10 days with a hamstring strain, while C.J. McCollum is in health and safety protocols. That means someone else is going to have to step up.

Graham is one potential option. He’s already been a solid source of value recently, scoring at least 20.75 DraftKings points in four straight games, and he’s averaged 0.83 DraftKings points per minute this season. He’s also seen one of the biggest usage bumps with McCollum and Ingram off the floor after the trade deadline, resulting in an average of 0.97 DraftKings points per minute. Graham can do some serious damage with increased playing time vs. the Hornets, who have been one of the best matchups in fantasy this season.

Graham could also be worth some consideration in the player prop market. Make sure to take advantage of the Awesemo Player Prop tool, which highlights the most exploitable player props each day.

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Our best NBA DFS projections are updated regularly, including whenever any relevant news breaks. View our Yahoo! NBA ownership, our DraftKings ownership projections and our FanDuel NBA ownership projections. Check out our daily fantasy sports rankings NBA for fantasy points and values that are derived directly from Alex Baker's own DFS basketball projections. We also have DraftKings ownership rankings, FanDuel rankings and Yahoo! NBA rankings for today's slate. Looking for more NBA DFS picks today and the best NBA DFS picks today?

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