Tonight features a large 12 NBA games on a slate that is filled with studs and not a lot of value. This is a very difficult slate to maneuver so in these four plays driven by Awesemo’s Fantasy Basketball Rankings, there are two options on FanDuel and two on DraftKings. One stud and one value play for each. This will be an important slate to monitor the and Awesemo’s NBA Starting Lineups page because it would be nice to find a few more value plays.
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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 Evan Fournier — Grades: C, C | Values: A, A
Value is incredibly difficult to find on this slate, but Evan Fournier stands out as one of the better options at his salary. Awesemo NBA projections have Fournier to be the best value on FanDuel and the fourth-best on DraftKings right now. The Knicks will be without Cam Reddish and Quentin Grimes, who were two potential guards who could take minutes away from Fournier. Head coach Tom Thibodeau loves Fournier and the rest of the starters anyway, so if his shot is falling, and sometimes even if it is not, Fournier will play heavy minutes. He is projected to play 32.3 minutes tonight, which is another reason why he is popping so much.
Seeing the Knicks as a double-digit home favorite is a welcomed sight as they host the Trail Blazers, who have been atrocious since the All-Star Break. They have lost seven of their last eight games and have given up 124.8 points per game during that stretch. The Knicks average just 105.9 points per game while playing at the fourth-slowest pace in the league. They should get a great bump up in production tonight, as they are implied to score 117.25 points. Fournier has been a little boom or bust this season, which has kept his salary in tact. He is coming off a 25-point outing in his more recent game. The upside is there. Prioritize Fournier on FanDuel.
It does not happen often that Fournier hits as such a solid value play in the NBA lineup optimizer, but he is showing up highly in the NBA projections tonight. Check out all of our free NBA DFS picks today in the DraftKings Fantasy Basketball Cheat Sheet and FanDuel Fantasy Basketball Cheat Sheet.
PF Giannis Antetokounmpo — Grades: A, A | Values: B, A
There are 12 players priced at $10,000 or more on DraftKings tonight. Picking the correct stud will be incredibly important to success on this slate. To make matters even more difficult, 24 players have an A grade on DraftKings, but there are only six of those players on FanDuel in our Fantasy Basketball Rankings. One player who covers both sites in being a great play is Giannis Antetokounmpo. Since the All-Star Break, Giannis has been one of the most consistent players who is averaging a massive double-double with 31 points and 13.1 rebounds per game. He continues to rank tied for second in points and fifth in rebounds this season.
What really sets Giannis apart from the other studs on the slate is this matchup with the Kings. The Bucks are tied with the Timberwolves with the highest total on the board at 125, as this game has the highest total on the slate at 241 points. The Bucks are nine-point road favorites against the Kings, who rank 28th in defensive rating, allowing 115.3 points per game. They also allow the second-most points scored in the paint this season with 51.7 per game. Giannis is second to Ja Morant in points scored in the paint this season. He is another player to prioritize on FanDuel, as he has the highest boom percentage in our Boom/Bust Tool.
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C Precious Achiuwa — Grades: C, C | Values: A, B
Being center-only eligible on DraftKings is not ideal, but Precious Achiuwa is still priced at only $3,900 and is rating out in our NBA player projections as the second-best option on DraftKings. Achiuwa is still starting at center for the Raptors, while OG Anunoby and Fred VanVleet are both up in the air to play tonight. Achiuwa is coming off a very impressive game where he had a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds. It was his fourth-straight game scoring in double figures and the double-double helped Achiuwa reach over 35 DraftKings points. He played 33 minutes in that game while our projections have him at a modest 26.7 minutes tonight.
Playing against the Clippers is a very good spot for opposing centers. They allow the sixth-most points scored in the paint and rank 26th in rebounding percentage this season. They allow the most offensive rebounds with 11.9 per game, so Achiuwa has a chance to be very active on the glass tonight. The Raptors have won four straight games as this will conclude their six-game road trip. This game has the lowest total on the slate at 215 points, so no need to get too crazy here. However, the low salary of Achiuwa mitigates his risk. He is second in our NBA DFS ownership projections on DraftKings, where he is simply too cheap for this matchup against the Clippers.
PF LeBron James — Grades: A, A | Values: B, A
Last but not least, the DraftKings pay-up option is LeBron James. The Lakers continue to get whooped lately, as they have lost 11 of their last 14 games. They still remain in the ninth spot in the Western Conference, but not reaching the playoffs is a real concern as Anthony Davis is still out with an injury. With no Davis, there has been an incredible ceiling with James. He is tied with Giannis, averaging 29.7 points per game this season, which is his best number since his first go-around with the Cavaliers. James is opposite of Giannis in our NBA Fantasy Boom/Bust Tool. He has the highest boom percentage on DraftKings and the fifth-highest on FanDuel tonight.
The Lakers are nearly double-digit underdogs on the road against the Timberwolves. Who would have thought that going into this season? This game has the second-highest total on the slate at 240.5 points. Monitor the starting lineup as this is the Lakers’ third game in four nights and James will randomly sit with knee soreness. If James is good to go, he is in a great spot as he will have to do all of the heavy lifting to keep this Lakers team afloat. Over his last five games played, James is averaging 38 points per game while shooting 55.4% from the field and 46.8% from behind the arc. He has made four or more 3-pointers in four of those five games. Play the King.
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Check out our NBA DraftKings rankings for fantasy points and values that are derived directly from Alex Baker's own NBA DFS projections DraftKings. View our Yahoo! NBA ownership projections, our DraftKings ownership projections and our FanDuel NBA ownership projections. Our NBA DFS projections DraftKings are updated regularly, including whenever any relevant news breaks. We also have DraftKings NBA ownership rankings, Yahoo! NBA rankings and FanDuel ownership rankings for today's slate. Looking for more DFS NBA today and the best free NBA DFS tools?
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