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NBA DFS GPP Recap: The Great Wall

NBA DFS GPP Recap: The Great Wall
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NBA DFS GPP Recap: The Great Wall

Last night between tinkering with PGA lineups and flipping back and forth between basketball games I had to take time to try and fathom just how large of a human being DeAndre Jordan is. Jordan had just finished throwing down a monster jam, almost breaking the backboard and bringing down the hoop with him. I’ll save you the trouble of using a search engine – he’s large.

Just watch this guy dunk and then read this piece.

Position Player Statline DK Points FD Points
PG John Wall 29Pts, 12Ast, 10Reb, 3Stl,1Blk,8TO 69 59
SG Nicolas Batum 26Pts, 9Ast, 7Reb, 1TO 49.25 46.9
SF Lance Stephenson 11Reb, 7Ast, 24Pts, 1TO 49.25 46.7
PF Anthony Davis 27Pts, 14Reb, 2Ast, 2Blk, 1Stl, 1TO 55 51.8
C DeAndre Jordan 23Pts, 16Reb, 1Ast, 2Blk, 1Stl, 1TO 51.5 47.9

Note: If a player is listed above, this does not mean he was the top scoring player at his position. Also, player positioning may change in the future as positional eligibility varies from FanDuel and DraftKings.


$100K Baller, $1,065 Entry, $20,000 to First Place
Winner: teamamerica79
Team: Darren Collison, John Wall, JJ Redick, Zach LaVine, Nicolas Batum, Trevor Ariza, Anthony Davis, Marvin Williams, Enes Kanter
Score: 358.40

$150K Monster, $300 Entry, $20,000 to First Place
Winner: teamamerica79
Team: John Wall, Brandon Jennings, JJ Redick, Avery Bradley, Matt Barnes, Kevin Durant, Anthony Davis, Marvin Williams, Enes Kanter
Score: 355.40

$225K Slam, $25 Entry, $25,000 to First Place
Winner: rublefish91910
Team: Brandon Jennings, John Wall, Iman Shumpert, Lance Stephenson, Nicolas Batum, Matt Barnes, Anthony Davis, Kevin Love, Andre Drummond
Score: 377.50


$100K All-Star, $1,060 Entry, $20,000 to First Place
Winner: pianoclub
Team: Kyrie Irving, Iman Shumpert, Lance Stephenson, Kevin Love, DeAndre Jordan, Brandon Jennings, DeMarcus Cousins, Toney Douglas
Score: 326.25

$140K 3-Ball, $300 Entry, $20,000 to First Place
Winner: pianoclub
Team: Kyrie Irving, Iman Shumpert, Lance Stephenson, Kevin Love, DeAndre Jordan, Brandon Jennings, DeMarcus Cousins, Toney Douglas
Score: 326.25

$300K Bird, $33 Entry, $50,000 to First Place
Winner: mazwa
Team: John Wall, Iman Shumpert, Matt Barnes, Kevin Love, Andre Drummond, Brandon Jennings, Ryan Anderson, DeAndre Jordan
Score: 351.25

Money in the Middle

Each week I’ve been identifying a certain range of salaries that have been exploited on FanDuel in GPPs and have led to top leaderboard finishes. Last week value allowed for the exploitation of the top players on the board but as salaries have caught up to injury situations around the league, the reliable value has become a bit more scarce from night to night. Last night, the range of $5,000-$6,000 was an important range for GPP winners.

Player Salary FD Points Slam Own %
Lance Stephenson $5,600 46.7 7.6%
Matt Barnes $5,600 35.5 16.1%
Enes Kanter $5,200 32.9 7.6%


Taking advantage of a monstrous game from Lance Stephenson was important not only because of his point total, but also because of his ownership. Lance, as well as Kanter, who found themselves on some of the top lineups were owned on only 7.6% of rosters in the Slam. Coupling a few players from this range with other players even further below (Brandon Jennings, Iman Shumpert) allowed players to take advantage of top performances from stars like Anthony Davis and John Wall.

Game Theory in GPPs – Adaptation

I’ve been focusing the last two weeks on finding where GPP winning lineups are exploiting game theory in their lineups and I want to continue that trend this week. Despite solid performances from a handful of “chalk” players last night there were still opportunities to differentiate from the field last night. Here are some of the plays winning GPP players made last night to separate themselves from the field.

Chalk DKOwn% FDOwn% Pivot DKOwn% FDOwn%
Kyrie Irving 21.8 29 John Wall 10 14.7
Iman Shumpert 26.4 27.1 Lance Stephenson 10.2 7.6


You might initially note that both sets of players I’ve listed carry completely different salaries. While the salaries are different the point remains that we can differentiate in different spots and allocate our salary to different positions if we choose to jive from the chalk. While Kyrie and Shumpert were fine plays any point differential you can make up on the field by differentiating gives you a better chance of winning a tournament. As the chalk becomes more noticeable from week to week, it’s becoming even easier to become contrarian – use it to your advantage!

How Contrarian Must I Be?

After scrapping the Utility section thanks to overwhelming (and quite boring) data, I took to the DailyRoto forums to find a section that was a better fit. After a handful of sections, I decided to focus on the ownership aspect, especially in regards to the two major tournaments of the night (the Slam and Shootaround). Given that we can comprehend so easily how difficult it is to win a GPP, we’re often times stretching out of proportion just how to build a lineup. Fitting in a player that no one else will have, just because no one else will have him. Is this necessary? How contrarian do we need to be in order to finish first out of thousands of entries?

Here we are, the last week of data for this section.

As for this week:

FD Slam: 34.2%, 14.7%, 27.1%, 7.6%, 12.4%, 16.1%, 37.6%, 31.9%, 21.1%
DK Bird: 10%, 26.4%, 9.8%, 23.8%, 19.8%, 43.3%, 5.5%, 10.2%

This is what I wrote last week in this section:

“The more I’ve been disgusted with playing NBA recently (thanks to insanely high scores and crazy, odd events) I’m actually coming around to the idea of only playing GPPs during this stretch of the year. If you take a look at the ownership levels and merely compare them to some of the sets we’ve looked at in the past – it appears on the surface as if the total ownership percentages are slightly rising. In theory, this is a great thing for pure GPP players. With the smattering of value around the industry and the upgrade in availability of unique lineups – taking a stand by merely finding underowned players in the market might be a sound strategy. Much like I’ve mentioned with the PGA GPP recaps, we can actually create positive expected value this way if the markets are inefficient. As of right now, the value is so immense and the opportunity is so great that the market has been quiet efficient. However, as the sites start to counteract the efficiency of the market by rising the prices of value players – we can counteract their counteraction by moving off of those players regardless of their opportunity. At a certain price point these “value players” are no longer valuable – and that is when we can exploit the market.”

After digesting another week full of value and crazy March NBA scenarios I think it all rings true, hence why I’m leaving it in here for another week. As value becomes less valuable due to a rise in salary we can try to take advantage by finding similar price points that produce lower ownership. Much like I’ve written in the PGA GPP recap, if the market is inefficient on value plays the rest of the way, we can create positive expected value just by zigging where they zag.

Congrats to the winners!