I miss the NBA and I miss NBA DFS. While the grind of the NBA DFS season is filled with frustration over late breaking injury news, challenging “never-before-seen” situations to try and diagnose, and a slew of early tilting over normal results; I miss it dearly.
I enjoy the challenge associated with NBA DFS. You do your best to stay grounded in all the preparation you’ve done throughout the day, but the landscape shifts rapidly. Much of the “skill” in NBA DFS is in how you handle those stressful moments when time is dwindling and patience is thin. We’ll dive into those last minute preparations and how to handle them with future video content, but in the meantime can I interest you in some NBA DFS without pre-game injury news?
FanDuel is running free nightly contests that simulate the NBA schedule and they’re giving away some site credits to the winners. While we won’t have the accompanying sweat and tilt of watching your players on television, we do get to enjoy putting the pieces of the puzzle together for each day’s slate.
For better or worse, this is also an opportunity to create some daily habits for all of us. We’ll make a deal of sorts. I’ll produce some content around fake basketball and using our tools at DailyRoto to give you a better chance at winning some site credits on FanDuel and in turn you’ll read some ramblings from a professional self isolator. Together we can save lives, possibly avoid boredom, and prepare ourselves for a future run by computer overlords. And most importantly, we can all feel more connected to jokes about living in a simulation. Deal?
Ok, let’s walk through some of the basics of these contests.
- The schedule corresponds to the original NBA schedule so March 19th’s slate is what we were supposed to have on March 19th. All this does is set the player pool, the matchups are meaningless for the final points.
- The Fantasy points awarded to each player are randomly selected from the distribution of scores a player has had for the year but FanDuel does the nice thing of removing games your player hasn’t played in.
- Only players who have scored Fantasy points in 15 or more games are included in the pool
With that framework in mind, most of you probably had the same immediate thought I had “How many games has Boban played?”
Theoretically players who haven’t played many games and have wide ranges of outcomes in their distributions are ideal for this format. So Boban, the Fantasy point per minute god who rarely cracks the court, immediately came to mind. The first place I checked was the DailyRoto Scoring and Values Tool which shows Boban has played in 34 games and delivered 30 points in nine percent of them and below 20 points in 55 percent of games played. While Boban always seems like the hero we need, I wanted to investigate how that initial thought stacked up with the competition. Thankfully, our scoring and values tool is still feeding in the FanDuel salaries. As a result, you can salary adjust and compare players past production by different thresholds. We have points multipliers under the “values” column and point thresholds under the “points” column. The price discrepancies are useful for identifying high upside “value” plays while the raw production will be necessary to fill out your salary overall.
Here’s my approach:
- Compare positional values by sorting the 6x multiple
- Identify strongest positions for value
- Choose studs from weakest positions for value
- Use 50 and 60 Fantasy point thresholds for comparing studs
- Make the pieces fit
So let’s extend this approach position-ally for the March 19th slate.
The value stars:
PG – De’Anthony Melton (MEM) – 6x rate = 40 percent, 7x rate = 25 percent
SG – Josh Richardson (PHI) – 6x rate = 42 percent, 7x rate = 15 percent
SG – Terrence Ross (ORL) – 6x rate = 40 percent, 7x rate = 14 percent
SG – Malik Monk (CHA) – 6x rate = 36 percent, 7x rate = 22 percent
SF – Josh Jackson (MEM) – 6x rate = 44 percent, 7x rate = 11 percent
C – P.J. Tucker (HOU) – 6x rate = 41 percent, 7x rate = 28 percent
C – Bismack Biyombo (CHA) – 6x rate = 38 percent, 7x rate = 28 percent
The consistent studs:
Tier one – 60 points > 30 percent of the time
SG – James Harden – 60 points = 38 percent, 70 points = 20 percent
SF – Giannis Antetokounmpo – 60 points = 35 percent, 70 points = 14 percent
PG – Luka Doncic – 60 points = 30 percent, 70 points = 6 percent
Tier Two – 60 points > 10 percent of the time
PG – Russell Westbrook – 60 points = 23 percent, 70 points = 0 percent
C – Joel Embiid – 60 points = 14 percent, 70 points = 2 percent
PG – Damian Lillard – 60 points = 12 percent, 70 points = 9 percent
A quick overview of the slate, makes it clear that your highest upside studs are going to come from SG, SF, and PG and the positions with the most value look like C. The one position missing from both sets is power forward so we’ll save that one for last in roster construction and we’re more likely to use it to find value (likely more mid-tier value) while we fill out the bar-belled stars and scrubs approach at the other positions.
So now that you’ve made your roster you can tune back into FanDuel’s live scoring at 7 PM EST tonight and in 10 minute increments get fully updated on how variance has once again found one of the three times all year Giannis Antetokounmpo scored under 40 FanDuel points. By 8:00 PM EST you’ll know the results of all your
hard work. Enjoy the games simulations!