Welcome to the NBA playoffs! Tonight offers a two-game slate for the first round of the play-in tournament. The winner of the Nets – Cavaliers game will play the Celtics in the Eastern Conference, while the winner of the Timberwolves – Clippers game will play the Grizzlies in the Western Conference. There is not a lot of news to report, but be sure to keep up to date on Awesemo’s NBA Starting Lineups page to see who is in and out of the lineup tonight. With Steve Nash being the head coach for the Nets, who knows what mystery lineup he will deploy? These four plays below are driven by Awesemo’s Fantasy Basketball Rankings. Let’s dive in!
DraftKings & FanDuel NBA Fantasy Basketball Rankings
*Grades are ordered DraftKings, FanDuel. The initial grade indicates a player’s strength of output, with the value grade indicating their strength as a play in relation to their salary.
SG Caris LeVert — Grades: B, B | Values: C, A
The $5,400 salary on FanDuel for Caris LeVert is borderline disrespectful. He is the best value play on the slate for FanDuel in Awesemo’s NBA daily fantasy projections and also has the highest boom percentage in Awesemo’s NBA DFS Boom/Bust Tool. LeVert will have to play very well to pull off the upset against the Nets. They are nearly double-digit road underdogs and are implied for 108.75 points, which is five points lower than any other team on the slate. The Nets beat the Cavaliers 118-107 in the second-to-last game of the regular season. Now they are playing for the playoffs.
LeVert was in foul trouble in their most recent matchup but still played 34 minutes. He finished with only 16 points, four rebounds and four assists, but he will need to be aggressive in this matchup. It should come to no surprise that LeVert is projected for the most ownership on FanDuel. He is coming in at nearly 60% on this two-game slate. Jarrett Allen is out for the Cavaliers, which hurts the team’s chances, but helps the upside of LeVert, who is averaging more points, rebounds and assists without Allen in the lineup.
C Karl-Anthony Towns — Grades: A, A | Values: C, B
Karl-Anthony Towns is in his own pricing tier when it comes to the other centers on this slate. He comes in second best to Kevin Durant in Awesemo’s daily projections, but is priced much lower with a better value, making him the preferred pay-up option on this slate. The Timberwolves led the league in scoring and 3-pointers made this season and Towns is a big reason why. Towns is leading the way on DraftKings in Awesemo’s NBA DFS Boom/Bust Tool and comes in second behind LeVert in boom percentage on FanDuel. His upside is extremely high.
This matchup against the Clippers features the highest total at 230.5 points, as the Timberwolves are implied to score 116.75 points. Towns is leading the Timberwolves in points, rebounds, blocks and usage rate this season. His rebounding numbers are a little low compared to most seasons, but playing the Clippers, who rank 26th in rebounding percentage, will make up for that. Towns will be popular in Awesemo’s NBA fantasy ownership projections for both sites, but it is deserving. He will need to dominate the paint to fend off the upset at home.
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PG Reggie Jackson — Grades: B, B | Values: C, A
Reggie Jackson has seen a dip in production the last two games, as he has recorded back-to-back games of under 20 DraftKings points. Playing alongside Paul George will decrease his usage rate and production, but Jackson still comes in as a very strong value play on this slate. On FanDuel, Jackson is in the top four in Awesemo’s daily projections, ownership projections and boom percentage. He is a weaker play on DraftKings due to his price tag, but still should be considered on this small slate with not many point guards to choose from.
The Clippers are only three-point road underdogs against the Timberwolves as they certainly hold the upper hand in playoff experience. In the first three games against the Timberwolves this season, Jackson averaged 23.3 points per game while shooting 56% from the field and 48% from behind the arc. Jackson made a career-high seven 3-pointers in his first game against the Timberwolves this season. George will command more attention and rightfully so, but Jackson has shown all season long that he can get it going at any point.
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Looking for more DFS NBA today and the top NBA DFS picks tonight? Our NBA DraftKings projections are updated regularly, including whenever any relevant news breaks. View our Yahoo! NBA ownership, our DraftKings NBA ownership and our FanDuel ownership projections. We also have FanDuel rankings, DraftKings rankings and Yahoo! NBA ownership rankings for today's slate. Check out our NBA DraftKings rankings for fantasy points and values that are derived directly from Alex Baker's own daily fantasy basketball projections.
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