RadThad breaks down today’s four-game NBA DFS playoff slate!!
What’s up my peeps? This Saturday marks the “start” of the NBA playoffs! Ok. We had some exciting play in games that “officially” rang in this season’s playoffs, but you get my drift. The seeding has been settled so now we can see who’s worthy of being declared the NBA World Champs.
Things will be different in the post season, when compared to the daily fiasco handed to us in the regular season… a lot different. The concept of “load management” will be tossed out the window so expect each team to put forth their best effort each and every time they take the court.
That means tight rotations and heavy minutes for starters and stars (for the most part). Barring an unusual circumstance, the days of rostering a minimum salary scrub in the hopes of coming away with 30 fantasy points are done.
You’ll need to choose your studs (and the guys that make them fit) very carefully. Have you ever heard the saying, “There’s more than one way to skin a cat.”? (sorry cat lovers) Well, the same holds true for NBA playoff DFS.
The first game of any playoff series is hard to predict from a DFS standpoint, seeing as how we don’t know what type of rotations to expect right off the bat. No worries. Once the rotations are revealed, the content will follow.
Cash game strategy is very different from tournament strategy, even in the playoffs. In cash games, it’s all about value. Well, it’s not just about value, but you know what I mean. Your cash game roster should be very “fluid” throughout its construction. To paraphrase the immortal Bruce Lee, “It must be like water.”
Late breaking news doesn’t usually come down during the playoffs, but that doesn’t mean you should just “set it and forget it” when it comes to your lineups. Strange things can happen, even in the playoffs, so you’ll want to stay alert.
I’ll be sure to post any updates to the article as news breaks (including updated cash game core plays). I’ll also notify y’all of any updates via the Twitter machine. In the meantime, here are my thoughts for today’s slate.
Top Stud (over $8K on FD): Nikola Jokic (followed by Giannis Antetokounmpo)
Top Stud (over $8K on DK): Nikola Jokic (followed by Giannis Antetokounmpo)
Top Value (under $5K on FD): Tristan Thompson (followed by Robert Covington and Goran Dragic)
Top Value (under $5K on DK): Goran Dragic (followed by Brook Lopez and Monte Morris)
-On FanDuel my most common cash core of players consists of Goran Dragic (MIA), Marcus Smart (BOS), Michael Porter Jr. (DEN) and Kristaps Porzingis (DAL). You can add Robert Covington (POR) as a bonus core play.
-On DraftKings, I’m getting a lot of Dragic, Monte Morris (DEN), JaMychal Green (DEN) and Paul George (LAC). You can consider Kawhi Leonard (LAC) a bonus core play as well.
– Here are a few things to consider when constructing your cash game and tournament lineups for this slate:
–“How many players from any given team is too many?” We asked ourselves this question a lot during the regular season, however, during the NBA playoffs, teams are usually coming in at “full strength”, or at least close to it. That means we’ll have to be picky when it comes to choosing value that will allow us to roster the “beefcake” options of our choice for any given slate. Generally, will need to look closely at rotations and determine what guys are getting more minutes than they received during the regular season so we can get the most “bang for our buck”. One guy that usually gets a lot more playing time during the playoffs is someone like Goran Dragic (MIA). Brook Lopez (MIL) also falls under that category.
-Choose your “beefcake” wisely in cash games is no “joke”. Nikola Jokic (POR) is projected to be the highest fantasy scorer for today’s slate, so he’s an excellent choice to do the heavy lifting for your cash game lineup. In three games against Portland this season he’s averaging 43.9 fantasy points per game in 30.0 minutes per game. He should easily exceed those numbers today. He’ll likely be a popular choice, so consider making a pivot to someone like Giannis Antetokounmpo (MIL) in GPPs.
-Spend up at point guard or shooting guard in tournaments. Guys like Dragic, Smart and Facundo Campazzo (DEN) will come in handy in cash games, however, they won’t make the list as “low-owned options” in tournaments. Consider spending down at center in tournaments and using the extra salary to splurge for someone like Luka Doncic (DAL) or James Harden (BKN). Don’t sleep on Damian Lillard (POR) either. We all know that he usually has a 50 point game in him at some point during the playoffs. That could very well come tonight against the Denver Nuggets.
-Who are some other cash game options on this slate? Well, Jimmy Butler (MIA), Paul George (LAC) and Kawhi Leonard (LAC) are great FanDuel options if you can fit them in, while Donte DiVincenzo (MIL) offers some salary relief. On DraftKings, Paul Millsap (DEN) and Evan Fournier (BOS) are helpful pieces to the puzzle. The Los Angeles Clippers offer more value as the team on DraftKings, so Patrick Beverley (LAC) and Nicolas Batum (LAC) are some other options.
-Who are a couple of my favorite tournament options on this slate? Luka Doncic (DAL), Kyrie Irving (BKN), Damian Lillard (POR), Giannis Antetokounmpo (MIL) and Jayson Tatum (BOS) are some of my favorite studs that could go lower owned today. If you’re looking for a lower owned pivot off of “The Joker”, consider rostering Bam Adebayo (MIA). He’s also a cash game viable option on DraftKings if you want to go “double trouble” in the center and utility slots.
-In a nutshell, I’m using a mixture of site-specific value plays, along with Nikola Jokic (DEN) to bring my team to “NBA DFS glory” in cash games. That’s my current cash game strategy, but we all know how things tend to change very quickly as we get closer to tip off. You’ll need to stay alert and available in the event that things get weird. (GPP Tip: This tip is pretty self-explanatory. Do the opposite of what I just said. Another viable tournament strategy for this slate is to roll with a balanced lineup. The biggest mistake that I make when going with a “studs and scrubs” approach in tournaments is either using too many of the chalky value plays or using the wrong ones. Sometimes it’s best to let your opponent make the mistakes by avoiding situation entirely.)