RadThad guides you through today’s Showdown slate in the wonderful world of NBA DFS!
What’s up my peeps? Welcome to Game 4 of the NBA Finals! Just when you thought the Miami Heat were dead and buried, Jimmy Butler (MIA) saves the day with a historic 40 point triple-double!
Tonight’s matchup should be just as exciting, as the Heat look to tie the series with the Lakers. If you aren’t enjoying the NBA “bubble reboot” playoffs by now, NBA may not be your thing.
Roster construction is important in daily fantasy, regardless of the sport, however, when it comes to single game slates you need to get everything perfect if you want to win.
You could have the same players on your roster as the winning lineup, however, if they’re not in the correct lineup spot, you can find yourself on the losing side of the equation.
If you nail the “Captain/MVP” spot, you are in the money. If you get it wrong, your night will be over early, and you’ll find yourself looking for reruns of “The Golden Girls”.
There’s a lot of luck involved on single game slates, so protect your hard-earned bankroll accordingly.
LeBron James (LAL) FanDuel $16,000/DraftKings $18,000: Despite having a “disappointing” performance in Game 3 of the NBA Finals, James remains my choice for the “CPT/MVP” spot in cash games. Granted, the 51.5 fantasy point performance he had would be considered spectacular for anyone else, however, anything less than 60 fantasy points from LeBron at this point in the playoffs is considered disappointing in my eyes (60 or more fantasy points in four of his last 10 games). The eight turnovers he had in his last game certainly didn’t help. I know I’m setting the bar rather high, but the NBA Finals is King James’ domain, so I expect nothing less than “vintage LeBron” every time he hits the court (averaging 57.5 DraftKings points per game over his last 10 games). James had to deal with his fair share of trash talking from an unstoppable Jimmy Butler (MIA) and even walked off the court early. Not a good look. I expect James to respond with authority tonight and get back to putting up 60 fantasy points.
Jimmy Butler (MIA) FanDuel $14,000/DraftKings $9600: Butler was an NBA star prior to the NBA playoffs, however, his “bubble” playoff performances have put him in the superstar category. The 83.25 DraftKings point outing he had in Game 3 against the Los Angeles Lakers would back up that statement. I mean, he messed around and dropped a 40 point triple-double in the NBA Finals. I’m not predicting another historic outing from Butler tonight, but he’ll need to continue to bring his “A game” if he wants to even the series with the Lakers. Injuries to Goran Dragic (MIA) and Bam Adebayo (MIA) will force him to take on an even greater load than usual for the Heat (30.5% usage rate in the last two games with Dragic and Adebayo both out). He’s an excellent alternate choice for the “Captain/MVP” spot if you think he can keep things going tonight.
Anthony Davis (LAL) FanDuel $15,000/DraftKings $11,400: After putting up 59.25 and 50.50 DraftKings points in Game 1 and Game 2 of the NBA Finals, Davis squeaked out a dud with 27.75 DraftKings points in Game 3. It’s safe to say that Game 3 was an outlier. He just couldn’t get things going and got stifled by the Miami Heat zone defense. Davis has put up 50 fantasy points or more in five of his last 10 games, so I expect a bounce back performance tonight in Game 4. He remains a core play in cash games (along with James and Butler). He’ll likely end up a much lower owned play in the “Captain/MVP” spot due to last game’s performance, however, he could easily end up the top fantasy producer on the night. Remember that when filling out the “Captain/MVP” spot in GPPs.
Kelly Olynyk (MIA) FanDuel $10,000/DraftKings $3200: Bam Adebayo (MIA) remains questionable for Game 4 with a neck strain, but if he is declared out you can consider Olynyk another cash game core play (DraftKings specific). To say that Olynyk has thrived in Bam’s absence is an understatement. He’s put up 38.75 and 32.75 DraftKings points in the Heat’s last two games, commanding a usage rate of 21.2%. His DraftKings salary is absurd for player in his position, so fade him at your own risk.
Bam Adebayo (MIA) FanDuel $13,000/DraftKings $14,100: Adebayo is the wildcard play on tonight’s slate. While Dragic has been declared out (foot), Bam is still considered questionable (neck). If he plays, he not only removes Olynyk as a core cash game play (DraftKings), but he also presents a dilemma with regards to whether or not you should put him in your lineup. He’s coming off of an injury and has missed the last two games, so using him as a core play in cash games is not an option. That being said, he has high 50 fantasy point upside, making him a desirable GPP target. We may not find out his availability for tonight’s game until right before tipoff, so stay alert.
Kendrick Nunn (MIA) FanDuel $10,000/DraftKings $4200: Nunn stunk it up in Game 3 against the Lakers, putting up 6.25 fantasy points in 20 minutes. It was an incredibly disappointing outing, however, with Goran Dragic (MIA) expected to miss Game 4, Nunn will continue to find his way onto my roster. He put up 28.25 and 24.0 DraftKings points in Game 1 and Game 2 and should bounce back with a similar performance tonight.
Markieff Morris (LAL) FanDuel $7000/DraftKings $2800: Morris pops up as a viable form of salary relief tonight, however, you should temper your expectations if you are expecting a repeat performance of the 31.5 fantasy point outing he had in Game 3 against the Heat. Not only did Morris play an unusually high 25 minutes, he also saw exceptionally high usage rate of 25.4%. To top it off, he drained five three-pointers on 11 attempts. That was his second best performance from beyond the arc for the entire season. Luckily for us, he didn’t see a spike in salary, so even an average performance on his behalf will suffice. Everything you get from him that’s considered “above average” is gravy.
Other cash game plays to consider include Andre Iguodala (MIA) and Alex Caruso (LAL).
Here are a few things to consider in tournaments:
Roll with Anthony Davis (LAL) in the “Captain/MVP” spot. I think James and Butler will command the most ownership when it comes to the “Captain/MVP” spot, and for good reason. That being said, Davis is currently projected to produce the second most fantasy points on the night and could easily end up breaking the slate with a ceiling game against the Heat (averaging 50.4 fantasy points per game against the Heat this season in five games).
Take a shot on Bam Adebayo (MIA). Bam could very well sit out tonight’s game, however, we may not find out until right before tipoff. That should keep his ownership levels in check. As I stated before, he has high 50 fantasy point upside and is worth taking a chance on in tournaments, if he suits up.
Other GPP plays to consider include Duncan Robinson (MIA), Tyler Herro (MIA) and Rajon Rondo (LAL).