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๐Ÿ€ Slate Starter: NBA DFS Strategy for DraftKings + FanDuel | Monday, 2/15

Eric Lindquist

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NBA DraftKings Picks for Thursday March 4 based on Josh Engleman's expert projections and simulations for lineups featuring Kawhi Leonard

Happy President’s Day and Happy Post-Valentine’s Day to you all. I don’t have anything quippy to fire up top in the intro tonight, so let’s just get right to the analysis, shall we? This is the Slate Starter, where I do my best identify a few NBA DFS picks and strategies to get you to the top of the leaderboards on DraftKings and FanDuel.

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NBA DFS Slate Starter: Picks & Strategy | Feb. 15

Washington Crossing the Dela-There Is the Value

With seven games on this NBA DFS, I’m pretty positive more value will emerge tomorrow afternoon. We’ve seen late scratches and injuries galore these past few weeks, so there’s little doubt in my mind some slate-altering piece of news is on the horizon. I could be literally anything, so be sure to follow @AwesemoNBA on Twitter so you’re covered no matter what.

That being said, at least the Washington Wizards exist. Out of the middle of nowhere, Moritz Wagner made his 2020-21 debut in the starting lineup and promptly beat up on Daniel Theis in alarming fashion. DraftKings and FanDuel had no time to account for such randomness, so Wagner sets up as a popular source of value. He’s $4,100 at power forward on FanDuel but just $3,200 at center on DraftKings, so his presence alone gives us access to coveted stars-and-scrubs build.

And while it’s not “value” per say, Bradley Beal sets up as an absolute steal at $8,900 on DraftKings. Should Russell Westbrook not play on the back-to-back (he hasn’t played one all year thus far), I expect Beal to be one of the highest-owned plays on the slate. Heck, add in Raul Neto, Davis Bertans and Deni Avdija into the mix as value plays du jour should Westbrook be inactive for Monday. Houston has been pegged as decent defensively since the Victor Oladipo trade, but ‘Dipo is expected to be rested. In other words, there should be little resistance on either side of the ball, setting the Wizards up as a popular source of value for your NBA DFS lineups.


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Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address to the Nets

Kevin Durant will be out on Monday and Tuesday nursing a calf injury, which means Kyrie Irving and James Harden will without question be two of the highest-owned plays both nights. I find it impossible that any of the major sites could properly elevate their tags quickly enough to account for their projected offensive workloads, so it’s really not a question of “if” but “how much”? To make matters even more interesting, Harden is now listed point guard only on DraftKings, while Irving was given the point guard/shooting guard dual-eligibility. Actually, that doesn’t make it more interesting at all, but whatever.

Long story short, you don’t need me to tell you Harden and Irving make for fantastic plays on Monday. What is interesting, however, is that a date with the Sacramento Kings makes these ancillary Nets pieces far more intriguing. While I expect Joe Harris to slip into the starting lineup, Bruce Brown is advantageously-priced at $4,100 on DraftKings and $3,900 on FanDuel, so no problem firing up him either in the absence of Durant. Even Timothe Luwawu-Cabarot has snuck his way into a few starts this season, so wouldn’t be completely shocked to see Steve Nash give him some extra run either. While it’s tough to peg minutes as of now, I promise I’ll have GPP exposure to everyone I possibly can in a game I project to carry a total north of 235.

Four Score and Four Final Thoughts for Your NBA DFS Lineups

  • Kawhi Leonard sat tonight while the Clippers eviscerated the lowly Cavaliers without him. Expect him to be good to go against Jimmy Butler and Co. as the Heat visit Staples on Monday.
  • Joel Embiid is legit questionable, and Dwight Howard and Tony Bradley are legit $3,600 and $3,000 on DraftKings, respectively. Get ready to party with those two if Embiid were to somehow not give it a go.
  • I’ve been awfully play-centric of late. That is, I’ve been flat-out saying who to roster rather than how to decide who to roster. Always looking to involve a bit of both, but is there anything you’d specifically like me to cover? Hit me up @EricLindquist on Twitter and let me know if there’s anything pressing you’d like me to look dig into more in-depth as we inch towards the halfway point of the NBA DFS season
  • Just play DeMarcus Cousins (it’s coming again, I promise).

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