NBA DFS Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings – 4/18/17

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!

I really like the format I used yesterday, which was just breaking down the games in a game by game format as opposed to going over picks. The reality of the situation is that a lot of these teams haven’t worked their playoff rotation out to the point where we can aggressively attack the picks with confidence, so it just makes sense to look at things from a much more simple view. I won’t go into a ton of detail, but I’ll highlight what I think will be important.

First up, we have Milwaukee taking on Toronto in the second game of the series. Milwaukee is up 1-0 after Giannis stuck it to the Raptors and Kyle Lowry couldn’t make a shot to save his life. One would have to think that it won’t continue tonight, but that’s really too difficult to say.

Starting with the Bucks, I do think there are a few guys we can look at here. First and foremost, Giannis Antetekuonmpo. He’s got the ability to notch a triple double at any point and time, and as a result has a monster ceiling. After him, I would be looking at Greg Monroe. His price has come up around the industry, for good reason, but I still think there are ways for him to exceed value. Both Khris Middleton and Malcolm Brogdon can end up putting together good games, and their prices as well are still at points where they can exceed value. If pressed, I’d go Monroe/Brodgon/Giannis/Middleton in terms of guys as point per dollar plays.

The Toronto side of things is a little more complicated. DeMar DeRozan is still the top scoring option here, and I think he’s priced at a nice point. Kyle Lowry as I said above was beyond awful in the first game, but I’m fine buying him where he’s priced. Serge Ibaka did very well, and I think he’s certainly still in play at his price. As far as I’m concerned, I don’t think anyone else on this team is trustworthy, and I won’t be using any of them tonight.

The next game up is the Chicago Bulls taking on the Boston Celtics. Chicago took a surprising 1-0 lead on the top seeded Celtics on Sunday, but I’m highly skeptical that they will be able to keep that momentum going. Isaiah Thomas is still struggling with the loss of his baby sister, I’m sure, but he is still fully expected to play tonight.

Chicago was a team mostly full of busts on Sunday, but I’m hoping that tonight can be different. I don’t think anyone of the main players did anything to hit 5x value. They all still had good games, but it didn’t translate into fantasy production. The price has now come up again on Wade and Rondo, so I am a little bit less interested in Wade, but Rondo has monster upside with everything he is capable of doing. I want to have a lot of him. Jimmy Butler is fine, and I’m sure he won’t be a bad play, but he needs to get to 50 points to hit value, and I think I’d rather wait until his price drops [if it does]. Bobby Portis had a monster game, and he could be worth a look if you think he’s capable of another one.

The Celtics looked weak without Isaiah Thomas on the floor on Sunday, and that’s something that cannot be repeated if they want to win this series. Isaiah hit 5x on Sunday and I am confident he can do the same thing tonight. Al Horford is the only guy I really trust behind him, and much like Rondo, he carries that triple double upside that can be useful on bonus sites like DraftKings and Fantasy Draft. On FanDuel, I think both Avery Bradley and Marcus Smart are overpriced, but I don’t mind Jae Crowder because he can lace together nice stat lines at a moments notice, as well as taking a flyer on Kelly Olynyk.

Lastly, we’ll have the night end with a matchup between the Utah Jazz and the Los Angeles Clippers. The Jazz took the Clippers to the wire and got the win, and as I’ve been saying for a few months now, this Jazz team is going to be a tough out. They will be without their star center, Rudy Gobert, tonight which will have an impact, and it will be interesting to see what direction they go in tonight.

I was admittedly somewhat surprised to see the Jazz start Boris Diaw over Favors, but it’s irrelevant now as the Jazz will likely have to start both. Diaw isn’t a guy I’m looking at tonight at all, but I think Favors still has a ton of upside at his price this evening. Joe Johnson was the only one who managed a good game, and I’m guessing he’ll be one of the more popular options on this slate as well. The price is fair and he should see big minutes without Gobert. I think Hayward is still slightly overpriced, but he could surprise me. Even though he disappointed in game one, I love the price on George Hill tonight.

On the Clippers side of the ball, Chris Paul is a guy I’m going to have all over the place. He’s a strong threat for a double double and should break 45 fantasy points. I don’t mind building around him. Blake Griffin had a horrible time shooting the ball, but that’s not always going to happen. He’s still a little steep for me in this matchup. DeAndre Jordan was underwhelming and he’s going to need to do a lot more than what he did to convince me he’s worth playing. I’m still willing to take a shot with Luc Richard Mbah a Moute considering how often he’ll be on the court.

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