On the schedule for Thursday is a five-game NBA slate, including three totals north of 225 points. As always, be sure to be watching the Awesemo NBA Starting Lineups page closely for updates on each team before making NBA picks today. Here are some NBA daily fantasy basketball picks that stand out for tonight’s slate using Awesemo’s NBA DFS Boom/Bust Tool and NBA DFS projections.
Boom/Bust NBA Daily Fantasy Projections & Picks Today
Boom: Caris LeVert: $5,800 DraftKings/$5,200 FanDuel
35% DraftKings Boom/44% FanDuel Boom
Last night, LeVert had his best showing so far in a Cavaliers uniform, posting 46 DraftKings points in a brutal spot against a Mavericks team that ranks seventh in defensive efficiency and dead last in pace. With Evan Mobley (ankle), Jarrett Allen (finger) and Dean Wade (knee) all sidelined, and the Cavaliers still fighting to hold onto the seventh seed in the East, they used a very tight rotation, resulting in a team-high 38 minutes for LeVert. With those three players remaining unavailable Thursday against the Hawks, LeVert should continue to garner a huge workload that is by no means reflected in his current price tags.
Take Allen, Mobley and Wade off the floor and LeVert’s usage ranks second on the team at 25.9%, only trailing Darius Garland. In a sample size of 123 minutes, LeVert supplies one DraftKings points per minute without those three players and he should receive 35-40 minutes tonight in this very appealing matchup against an Atlanta defense that ranks 26th in efficiency. This game’s total is the second largest on the slate at 229.5 points, which is abnormally high for this slow-paced Cavs team. In fact, this is the second-highest total Cleveland has competed in this season. Outproducing his sub $6,000 salaries on both DraftKings and FanDuel should be a breeze for LeVert tonight and he is a top-three value on the slate for both sites according to Awesemo’s NBA daily fantasy projections.
Boom: Rudy Gobert: $7,700 DraftKings/$7,800 FanDuel
35% DraftKings Boom/35% FanDuel Boom
After sitting out one game with a leg injury, Gobert made his return to the lineup Tuesday and showed no signs of rust, finishing with 39 DraftKings points in 38.3 minutes against the Clippers. Now for Thursday comes a beautiful matchup against the depleted Lakers, who will be without LeBron James (ankle) and Anthony Davis (foot). For the season, Los Angeles ranks 22nd in defensive efficiency and third in pace. Plus, they are an elite spot for opposing big men, allowing the fifth-most rebounds and fourth-most points in the paint.
The Jazz carry the third-highest implied team total on the slate in this spot with 120.25 points and for the six times he has played behind an implied team total of at least 120 points this season, Gobert has been a monster with 44 DraftKings points per game. His salary got all the way up to around $10,000 on both DraftKings and FanDuel earlier this season and is one of the best bargains available Thursday at less than $8,000 on both sites. In Awesemo’s Boom Bust Tool, Gobert sports a top-five boom score on the slate for both DraftKings and FanDuel.
Boom: Stanley Johnson: $3,800 DraftKings/$4,500 FanDuel
17% DraftKings Boom/9% FanDuel Boom
Johnson is one of the better punts available for this five-game slate with the Lakers shorthanded. In the two games both James and Davis have missed over the last week, Johnson has started and generated 31.8 DraftKings points in 35 minutes per game. Of these two games, one was decided by 18 points and the other by five. This is important because it shows that no matter if the game is close or not, Johnson should see over 30 minutes tonight regardless of the Jazz being 13.5-point favorites.
The veteran collects 0.8 DraftKings points per minute with James and Davis off the floor this season in a sample size of 290 minutes and is averaging 21 DraftKings points per game for the 15 times he has eclipsed 25 minutes. Based on sheer volume, Johnson should beat his affordable price tags tonight and is a necessary play for this short slate to help squeeze in the studs.
Giannis Antetokounmpo: $11,800 DraftKings/$11,900 FanDuel
35% DraftKings Boom/30% FanDuel Boom
Speaking of studs, Antetokounmpo is without a doubt the best star to pay up for tonight. With the Bucks only one game back of the Heat for the one seed in the East, every game is critical from here on out for Milwaukee. In a battle that decided who owns the tiebreaker between the Sixers and Bucks on Tuesday, Antetokounmpo unsurprisingly rose to the occasion and erupted for 75 DraftKings points in the come from behind win over Philadelphia. This season, the two-time MVP ranks fourth in the league with a 34.1% usage rate, lifting him to an elite 1.74 DraftKings points per minute.
On the menu for Thursday night is a date with the Nets, who are chasing the Cavs for the seventh seed in the East with only six games remaining. Brooklyn ranks 20th in defensive efficiency and this marquee matchup boasts a slate-high total of 243.5 points, which is tied for the largest total the NBA has seen this season. Additionally, this game is expected to be a nail-biter, with the Nets only favored by 2 points. In totals of 235 points or greater this season, Antetokounmpo has been unstoppable, with 63.3 DraftKings points per game in a sample of 10 games. In Awesemo’s NBA Boom Bust Tool, the forward is rating as a top-five option on the slate in terms of Boom score for both DraftKings and FanDuel.
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Our NBA projections FanDuel are updated regularly, including whenever any relevant news breaks. Looking for more NBA DFS picks today DraftKings and the best free NBA DFS tools? View our FanDuel NBA ownership, our Yahoo! ownership and our DraftKings ownership. We also have DraftKings NBA ownership rankings, Yahoo! NBA rankings and FanDuel NBA ownership rankings for today's slate. Check out our NBA FanDuel rankings for fantasy points and values that are derived directly from Alex Baker's own best NBA DFS projections.
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