NBA DFS Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings – 3/10/17

Welcome to another edition of ResearchFantasy’s NBA Breakdown. These picks are what I consider to be the best play of the day, relative to their price. One of the most important things we must consider in daily fantasy is how many points a player gets per dollar. It helps us identify value plays to pair with studs that we know will produce in order to maximize our potential points in lineups. I also try to identify plays that can be used in either cash games or tournaments. Typically, when I build my cash games, I am looking for players that have the best floor combined with good upside. If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, please let us know!

Pricing is FantasyDraft/FanDuel/DraftKings


Kemba Walker (15000/8400/8100) – Friday night sets up as a pretty interesting slate, at least to me. When I look through the options at each position, I am not exactly floored. That is a good thing typically. It means I’m not really attached to anyone. When you get attached to someone, just like in a relationship, you can look past pretty obvious markers and make decisions based off emotion. That’s going to lose you money in the long term, as well as the short term. Moving on from there, Kemba is my favorite option at the point guard position. What does he check off for me? For one, he’s at home. He’s a much better player at home. Two, he’s been very consistent as of late, especially with Frank Kaminsky out of the lineup. The price is still fair across the board, and for someone with 50 point upside, this is a great situation.

Ricky Rubio

Ricky Rubio (12900/7100/6900) – How good has Ricky Rubio been basically all year? There were maybe two short streaks where you could understand the organization wanting to move on from him, but outside of that, wow. The price hasn’t caught up to the upside here, and he’ll be sitting on his home court waiting to take on the Golden State Warriors. The Warriors are only five point road favorites, which is a big deal, because if Durant was playing, this would be a 10+ point line, no questions asked. The Warriors are a great matchup for someone like Rubio, who should be able to come up with a nice output that exceeds his price tonight.

Elfrid Payton (13300/7000/7000) – Rounding out the point guard position tonight would have to be the hottest point guard in the league right now, Elfrid Payton. He’s coming off two straight triple-doubles, and is absolutely locked in right now. I don’t think that Charlotte does anything special on the defensive side of the ball, and I could certainly see him coming close to another triple-double. We saw saw Goran Dragic put up a really strong fantasy game against them, and with how Payton is playing, rebounding and dispersing the ball, it’s hard to look to anyone else tonight.


Giannis Antetekuonmpo (18000/11100/10100) – Giannis finally broke out of his slump [well, a slump for him] against the Knicks, and while the Pacers aren’t the laughingstock that the Knicks are, I think this still sets up nicely for Giannis. He’s someone I probably like a little more on DraftKings then on FanDuel, but I don’t think that he’s out of play there. It’s going to be tough for him to get to that 5x marker, which we’ve seen him struggle with in recent time, but he’s already almost hit triple-doubles in both games against the Pacers this year. I’ll be using him heavily in tournaments hoping for another monster game from him.

Seth Curry

Seth Curry (12600/6200/6700) – Things could definitely get interesting and fast for the Mavericks, who will now be welcoming back J.J Barea to the court. His minutes will have an impact on someone, though honestly, I would look at Quinn Cook and Yogi Ferrell as being the parties most affected. Curry has been way too good for this team to sit down in favor of those other two. I would expect him to still see the same level of shots and all that jazz. The biggest reason we are seeing him on this list is because the Brooklyn Nets are awful. Because of this, we need some exposure to him in our lineups tonight.

Evan Fournier (11200/5600/5700) – The last player at the position tonight is Evan Fournier. We’ve seen Fournier really come out of his shell in the last few games, and this is an excellent time to use him. His price is still far too low for what he could end up with. Next, Charlotte gives up way too many three point shots, and that is his bread and butter, so he should have all the space in the world to knock them down tonight. He’s a 30+ point upside guy, and the price is perfect for what we would be using him for. I think he’s a great play in all formats.


Jimmy Butler (17300/9100/9400) – One would have thought that with Dwyane Wade out, Jimmy Butler would have been better. He hasn’t been. He had a good basketball game on Wednesday night, but it didn’t accomplish what we needed from a fantasy perspective. This game is such a huge pace up game for the Bulls that it’s the best opportunity he’s seen in awhile. I don’t think it matters if Wade plays or not. He’s not my favorite play of the day or anything, but he really does have a ton of upside in this matchup, and should be on your tournament radar for sure.

Otto Porter

Otto Porter (12000/5900/6100) – Next up, let’s take a look at Otto Porter. He went through a bit of a rough phase for a few games, but finally seemed to turn things around in the second half of the game against Denver on Wednesday. He is very risky to say the least, because if he’s cold, I mean, he’s putting together outings in the teens. While the risk for that is present, the risk for 50+ point also exists. We’ve seen him put up some absolute monster games in the 2016-17 campaign, and a matchup against the Kings isn’t one that really scares me off of him. I’ll have my fair share in tournaments tonight.

Terrence Ross (10200/4500/5200) – Terrence Ross has been awful over the last two games. His price really hasn’t move thought, which, in case you were wondering, is a negative. The positive here is that we’ve seen him put up a few games in the 30’s in a Magic uniform. As I said when I was discussing Fournier, the Hornets are awful when it comes to guarding three point shooters, so if Ross has his shots falling, he could be a big time value play tonight. The fact that he does so little else ultimately makes him far too risky for my liking in cash games.


Dirk Nowitzki (12000/6200/6100) – It’s going to be hard to not have my lineups filled with a bunch of Mavericks tonight. The Nets are awful, but can be competitive enough that we see a ton of minutes out of starters. We saw that with the Hawks on Wednesday. The Mavericks move at a snails pace, but this is the biggest pace up matchup they could see, so it’s likely that the value of all of the Mavs are improved tonight. Dirk has been playing some of the best ball he has this year, and this price really isn’t reflective of what he is capable of. He’s a strong play tonight.

Trevor Booker

Trevor Booker (9200/5300/4700) – We already know that Brook Lopez is out tonight [which likely makes the spread huge], but I think we’ll see enough of Booker that he could pretty easily hit value, especially on DraftKings. We saw Booker putting up some huge games earlier in the year before Kenny Atkinson decided he didn’t need that to happen, and he needed to make sure everyone in the city of Brooklyn was able to set foot on the court for his pathetic team. End rant. Booker could have 30-35 point upside if this game stays close, because I think he has the tools to beat whoever the Mavs have on the court.

Skal Labissiere (6900/3600/3500) – You know it’s probably a great night at the position when you have to move to Skal Labissiere to fill things out. Really, he isn’t awful. However, the Kings do not seem interested in giving him more than 20 minutes until they are eliminated from playoff contention. He can put together good outings in the limited time he sees, but it isn’t more than 20-25 points. Still, you could do a lot worse than pay almost minimum price for that type of ceiling. I get it’s not 40 points, but it’s still attractive for the price.


Karl-Anthony Towns (18900/10400/10600) – I’m not exactly sure why, but something tells me that the Warriors are going to bring out the best in the Timberwolves. There is no one that I would rather have in that situation than Towns. There is no scenario, short of foul trouble, that would take him off the floor. He should see minutes close to 40 in this game, as long as it stays close, and we could certainly be looking at a 50+ point game if that all falls into place. Yes, I get that he needs that score to make him worth playing, but this is a guy with 70+ point upside if he has a monster 35/25 outing with some steals and blocks.

Nerlens Noel

Nerlens Noel (11300/6200/5700) – Noel is an interesting situation to me. The Mavericks brought him in to keep him on the bench, but he could do so much more for them then that. I think i’m pretty content with paying his price across the board, but obviously DraftKings sticks out the most. I think he should see 28-32 minutes in this game, and it’s likely that he should be able to exceed a point per minute against the fastest and worst team in the NBA. He’s a tournament shot only unless we hear he is going to get a start, which I doubt. UPDATE: Noel is out tonight. This really doesn’t help anyone in particular, though Salah Mejri could very well end up being a decent punt play.

Clint Capela (10200/5300/5200) –Let’s round things out tonight with Clint Capela. He should hold his head up high, because he had a monster game against a Utah team that is pretty good at shutting just about everyone down. The matchup is much better tonight against the Bulls, and as long as he’s seeing minutes in the mid to late 20’s, he’s a good bet to cross that 25 point mark again tonight. He certainly has 35+ point upside, which makes him a great target in tournaments.

Slate Strategy

Who do you want to pay up for tonight? No seriously. That’s a legit question. It’s all very underwhelming, at least in my opinion. I’m looking at Giannis or Butler. Giannis just has such huge upside, and Butler is in a really great spot tonight. I think choosing between one of those, or perhaps even someone like Harden or Wall, is the way to start things.

There are three games where I could see the vast majority of my plays coming from: ORL/CHA, HOU/CHI and BKN/DAL. I think that there are a ton of ways to go in those games, and as a result, you can round your lineups out pretty easily there.

Situations to Monitor

Orlando – Nikola Vucevic has missed three straight games. We’ll know prior to lock if he’s in or out, as they play in the first game of the night. Bismack Biyombo wasn’t so hot in the last game, but he should play pretty well against Cody Zeller who tends to focus more on scoring than rebounding.

Chicago – Wade looks to be on track to play against the Rockets on Friday.

Houston – Ryan Anderson remains questionable to play, though things are looking better. Sam Dekker saw 22 minutes, and Clint Capela over 30, but it’s tough to say if that last one was related or not.

Brooklyn – Brook Lopez is already out, so I think that Trevor Booker and Justin Hamilton will see a few more minutes, though it will increase usages across the board.

Denver – Nikola Jokic still looks unlikely to play, while Danilo Gallinari is moving in the right direction. Mason Plumlee benefits with Jokic being out, while a multitude of players will see a higher ceiling if Danilo doesn’t play.

Other Options

PG – John Wall, Dennis Schroeder, Jeremy Lin

SG – James Harden, DeMar DeRozan, Klay Thompson, Sean Kilpatrick

SF – Andrew Wiggins, Khris Middleton, Bojan Bogdanovic

PF – Marvin Williams, Aaron Gordon, Nemanja Bjelica

C – Mason Plumlee, Kosta Koufus

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