Daily Fantasy Rundown – NBA DFS – March 4th, 2015
Welcome to Wednesday’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.
Russell Westbrook (OKC) – At first glance Westbrook appears to be a must play given his recent performances, no Kevin Durant and a matchup against Philadelphia. However, there are a few factors that are concerning when viewed together. First, the price. Westbrook’s value thresholds are really high industry wide as he’s finally starting to move towards becoming accurately priced with Durant out. On most sites Westbrook needs to have a mid-50’s Fantasy point output just to meet value. Secondly, Westbrook is returning from a one game absence and will be playing with a mask as a result of a fracture in his face. Finally, the Thunder are heavy home favorites (-15) on the front end of a back to back. Those three factors together introduce risk with Westbrook, especially in light of the plethora of point guard options, including a handful of mid-tier options with big time upside. With all that said, in a vacuum, Westbrook is lined up to hit value and has tournament worthy upside. On the season, without Durant, Westbrook has an absurd 42 percent usage rate and 54 percent assist rate. He’s a good play but not the right play for me in cash games after evaluating the all the factors.
Next in line:
Chris Paul (LAC) – Paul is similar to Westbrook in that there’s a ton of upside here and he’s individually a strong value play but due to opportunity cost, I’ll try and eschew his high price tag and build a more balanced roster. The edge that Paul does have on Westbrook is he doesn’t carry the same risk factors: price is more reasonable, no injury concern and no blowout risk (two point spread and high total). Paul’s usage rate surprisingly hasn’t budged much in the games that Blake Griffin has missed (23.9 since Griffin went out, 23.1 on the season). However, his value has risen quite a bit due to a healthy increase in assist rate (56.4 since Griffin out, 46 on the season) and minutes (up about three per game and could be higher than that tonight with a tight spread). Paul is a really good value play and there are a ton of ways to build teams tonight, but as it stands now I’ll probably focus a bit more on the value plays written up below.
Ricky Rubio (MIN) – With Mo Williams out of town, Rubio is clearly running the show for the Timberwolves. He’s played at least 37 minutes in five of six games and the healthy playing time combined with his skill set makes him a triple double threat on any given night. He’s gone at least 5-5-5 in PTS-AST-REB over his last seven games and on top of that has a 3.0 steal rate, which is actually a bit down from the 4.2 and 3.6 marks he posted the previous two seasons (led league both times). This skill set and playing time allows Rubio to pay off rising price tags (right around 25 percent above the average cost of a roster spot on both DraftKings and FanDuel). The matchup is a stabilizing factor as Denver is fifth in pace and 21st in defensive efficiency against point guards.