Get off the beaten path with RadThad’s NBA DFS Breakdown, plays designed to help you take down a GPP!!
What’s up my peeps? Tonight’s NBA schedule gives us a glorious seven-game slate! This is the “sweet spot” when it comes to the number of NBA games on a slate, as far as I’m concerned. There’s more than enough “beefcake” at our disposal, but not too many options to complicate our decision-making process. At least not yet. If you’ve been playing NBA DFS since the start of the season, you already know things can change very quickly. One bit of last-minute injury news could turn the slate on its head. You’ll need to pay attention and stay near your computer if you want to make the most of any unexpected situations.
With all the value coming out of the Dallas Mavericks today, cash game roster construction should be straightforward. Let me guess, you have Luka and a couple of his teammates to go along with Drummond, Beal and Hachimura. Yeah, I figured. Those guys will be popular, so you’ll want to mix things up if you want to win a tournament.
Remember, this is a GPP article, so don’t get flustered if you don’t see some of the “chalkier” names listed below. The “meat” of the article is at the bottom, so I won’t be offended if you want to start there.
- Luka Doncic (DAL) – will be heavily owned by tipoff but has the highest ceiling on the slate
- Malcolm Brogdon (IND)
- Damian Lillard (POR)
- Trae Young (ATL)
- LaMelo Ball (CHA)
Hon. mention: Ish Smith (WAS) – if Russell Westbrook sits; excellent pivot off of a highly owned Trey Burke (DAL)
- Bradley Beal (WAS) – will be heavily owned by tipoff but has the second-highest ceiling on the slate
- D’Angelo Russell (MIN) – *if Karl-Anthony Towns sits
- C.J. McCollum (POR)
- Tyrese Haliburton (SAC)
- Devonte’ Graham (CHA)
Hon. mention: Donte DiVincenzo (MIL)
- Gordon Hayward (CHA)
- Harrison Barnes (SAC)
- Keldon Johnson (SA)
- De’Andre Hunter (ATL)
- Keldon Johnson (SA)
Hon. mention: Anthony Edwards (MIN)
- Giannis Antetokounmpo (MIL)
- Domantas Sabonis (IND)
- Larry Nance Jr. (CLE)
- P.J. Washington (CHA)
- Kelly Olynyk (MIA)
Hon. mention: Bobby Portis (MIL)
- Nikola Vucevic (ORL)
- Bam Adebayo (MIA)
- +Karl-Anthony Towns (MIN)
- Clint Capela (ATL)
- Deandre Ayton (PHO)
Hon. mention: Myles Turner (IND)
Top Stud (over $8K on FD): Luka Doncic (followed by Giannis Antetokounmpo)
Top Stud (over $8K on DK): Luka Doncic (followed by Giannis Antetokounmpo)
Top Value (under $5K on FD): Rui Hachimura (followed by Trey Burke)
Top Value (under $5K on DK): Trey Burke (followed by Rui Hachimura)
NBA DFS Notes
– If you’re taking the “studs and scrubs” approach, Luka Doncic (DAL), Bradley Beal (WAS), Damian Lillard (POR) and Giannis Antetokounmpo (MIL) have the highest ceilings on the slate (in that order).
– On FanDuel, my most common cash core of players consists of Luka Doncic (DAL), Bradley Beal (WAS), Rui Hachimura (WAS) and James Johnson (DAL). I expect these guys to be very heavily owned, so consider using other options in tournaments. Other guys who should carry heavy ownership (relatively speaking) include Jimmy Butler (MIA), John Collins (ATL) and Andre Drummond (CLE).
– On DraftKings, I’m getting a lot of Doncic, Johnson, Beal, Drummond and Trey Burke (DAL). Hachimura is a great value on DraftKings, so expect him to be heavily owned, as well.
– If you’re looking to construct a low owned lineup, here are a few recommendations that will buck the current roster construction trends for this slate:
- Jam in a full core of Dallas Mavericks players. At the moment, Jalen Brunson (DAL), Josh Richardson (DAL) and Dorian Finney-Smith (DAL) have been ruled out for Saturday’s game against the Orlando Magic due to “health and safety protocols.” It goes without saying that the Dallas Mavericks will be very shorthanded for tonight’s contest. Sure, Luka will do the “heavy lifting,” but other Mavericks players could emerge as good value options when it’s all said and done. The most commonly asked question at the moment is, “How many Dallas Mavericks players is too many?” I’m currently seeing two or three Mavs players in optimal lineups, so rostering multiple Mavericks will be a common theme. That being said, in tournaments, you can take it an extra step and run with a core of Luka Doncic (DAL), Trey Burke (DAL), Tim Hardaway Jr. (DAL) and James Johnson (DAL). If you’re going “balls to the walls,” you can add either Maxi Kleber (DAL) or Willie Cauley-Stein (DAL) for a full team stack. This is a good strategy to use on DraftKings, where the Mavericks players are underpriced as a team.
- Roll out Luka “naked.” The major drawback to using the above GPP strategy is the likelihood of one or two of these guys dropping a “snowflake” in your lineup is high. When using the, “How many players from a certain team is too many?” strategy in tournaments, I find myself using either too many players from the same team or the wrong combination of guys. We know Luka is going to shine, so consider rolling him out there “naked” in NBA DFS. Let your opponent try to decide which one of his teammates is going to step up. There will be a ton of lineups with multiple Dallas Mavericks but not very many lineups that roster only Doncic.
- Pivot to lower owned, high ceiling studs. Of the high ceiling guys listed above, Luka Doncic (DAL) and Bradley Beal (WAS) will be the higher owned options. With a number of Dallas Mavericks players sitting for “health and safety protocols,” and with Russell Westbrook (WAS) expected to sit out on the back end of a back-to-back, this only makes sense. Don’t be afraid to pivot to Damian Lillard (POR) and Giannis Antentokounmpo (MIL) in GPPs.
- Roster any center not named Andre Drummond (CLE). It’s looking like Drummond will be the highest owned center option tonight, and it won’t be close. I’m currently seeing him at greater than 30% ownership. That’s fine. The dude is a stud, so I have no problem with that. At least not in cash games. In terms of GPPs, I’ll take my chances by pivoting to a much lower owned, high ceiling and upside player like Nikola Vucevic (ORL) or Bam Adebayo (MIA). If you’re looking for a sneaky high ceiling center option, take a look at Karl-Anthony Towns (MIN). He’s currently listed as questionable for tonight’s game against the San Antonio Spurs, but he could end up the highest scorer at the position if he suits up.
- Consider some “under the radar” guards. Um, don’t look now, but Malcolm Brogdon (IND) is playing some of the best basketball of his career. He’s put up 54.25, 57.75 and 55.5 fantasy points in his last three games. Is it a coincidence he’s been doing damage while TJ Warren has been sidelined with a foot injury? I doubt it. Warren recently underwent surgery and will be out indefinitely. Look for Brogdon to continue to excel at low ownership.
- Low-owned tournament “scrub” options I like tonight include: Ish Smith (WAS), Jordan Bone (ORL) and James Ennis III (ORL).
Peep out today’s NBA DFS Cheat Sheet!