Daily Fantasy Rundown – DFS NBA – January 12th, 2015
Welcome to Monday’s edition of the Daily Fantasy Rundown with “leonem” and “dinkpiece”. Each day throughout the NBA season our daily NBA scouting reports will highlight the best top, value and cheap plays of the day based on the Daily Fantasy Industry’s pricing for salary cap games. Our analysis will help you consistently build winning rosters over the long run.
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Top Play: Kyle Lowry (TOR) (not worth paying up for in cash games in a below average matchup now that he’s overpriced)
Additional point guard notes: On a small slate that lacks obvious point guard selections, I felt it made more sense to simply attack the position as a whole in the notes section. I’m emphasizing paying up for Anthony Davis followed by the Bulls main guys (Butler/Gasol) if Rose is out. As a result, it makes sense to go pretty cheap at point guard as the opportunity cost is pretty low here. My preferred option for doing this is with Aaron Brooks (CHI). He’s certainly not a safe option, but if Derrick Rose is out, Brooks gives you high 20’s minutes upside with a really strong usage rate (around 28 percent when Rose and Dunleavy are off of the floor). Kirk Hinrich (CHI) would also be an option simply due to a near minimum cost and a likely 30-plus minute role. An alternative cheap option, particularly if Rose does play, is Marcus Smart (BOS). With Jeff Green out each of the past two games, Smart has played 29 and 31 minutes. His usage and assist rates are very disappointing for a point guard, so he’s in the Hinrich mode where you’re pretty much counting on low cost and 30 minutes allowing him to grind out something near value. Brooks is the guy who has the most profit potential (if Rose is out), which is why I prefer him. For slightly more money, you can jump up to Elfrid Payton (ORL), particularly as your second point guard. It’s certainly not a great matchup against the Bulls but with Tobias Harris and Evan Fournier likely out and Jimmy Butler likely on Victor Oladipo, Payton could see an uptick in minutes and offensive responsibility. The only two options at or above the average cost of a roster spot that I’d consider are Jrue Holiday (NO) (playing way up in pace) and Jarrett Jack (BKN) (strong minutes and usage/assist rates with Deron Williams out but a corrected price tag and poor matchup dampen my enthusiasm). Simply based on price and lack of strong options at the position, Patrick Beverley (HOU) pops in my model as an acceptable value play. Given his passiveness on the offensive end and reliance on three point shooting to meet value, I’d simply rather drop down in price to the cheap guys discussed (Bulls PGs/Smart/Payton) and reserve Beverley for tournaments only.
UPDATE: While my overall thoughts on how to attack the position remain the same, Derrick Rose is now likely to play and Tobias Harris/Evan Fournier are unlikely to play. Payton’s minutes become safer and likely higher with Fournier out, and the usage rate will increase with Harris out. He’s my preferred value play now while Marcus Smart moves ahead of Brooks/Hinrich as the cheap point guard to use. Also, Jrue Holiday becomes more usable as cap room is less of an issue with not being forced into Jimmy Butler/Pau Gasol if Rose is active. Rose himself becomes an intriguing option. Based on price and matchup he probably offers the most point per dollar upside at the position (Orlando is 26th in defensive efficiency against point guards). However, given the somewhat pessimistic comments Coach Tom Thibodeau made about his health and some blowout risk, I don’t think you need to use him in cash games.
Top Play: James Harden (HOU) – Price is more reasonable now but with an emphasis on paying up at power forward, a less expensive Jimmy Butler with possibly no Rose makes much more sense at the shooting guard position.
Next in line:
Jimmy Butler (CHI) – If Derrick Rose is out, I’ll try and squeeze Butler in on a short slate. His floor would be extremely high and there’s value in that when options are limited. However, it’s looking like Derrick Rose will suit up. With that in mind, I’m unlikely to pair the expensive Bulls options together (Butler and Gasol). Site format and pricing becomes very important. For example, Butler is way more usable on DraftKings (offers a much bigger discount to Gasol there) than he is on FanDuel (Evan Turner is shooting guard eligible and you need two power forwards, which makes it easier to use Gasol there).
Victor Oladipo (ORL) – While I’m a bit terrified relying on Oladipo matched up against Jimmy Butler, I think quantity trumps quality here. Oladipo played a season high 38 minutes on Saturday with Evan Fournier and Tobias Harris out. He also attempted a season high 21 shots. In a smaller sample size, Oladipo has seen bumps in usage and rebounding rates that trump a dip in assist rate when Tobias Harris is off the floor. With him being relied upon heavily and the minutes being high (Fournier is out, Harris’s absence means some of the back up two guards need to fill in at the three), I’ll take my chances with Oladipo against Butler this evening.