Saturday, February 27, 2016

Daily Fantasy Basketball Strategy: February 27, 2016

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A light eight-game slate Friday, relatively speaking at least, bleeds into a seven-game Saturday slate. There are actually eight games, but with the Heat-Celtics matinee stricken from most major tournaments, I’ll also strike it from the analysis here. Let’s get started by looking at the Vegas lines.

Vegas lines and totals

Minnesota @ New Orleans (-5) – total of 217
San Antonio (-6) @ Houston – total of 212.5
Portland (-3) @ Chicago – total of 207
Detroit @ Milwaukee (-2) – total of 203.5
Golden State (-3.5) @ Oklahoma City – total of 234
Brooklyn @ Utah (-11) – total of 196.5
Memphis (-6.5) @ Phoenix – total of 208

The main event Saturday is most certainly Warriors-Thunder, with a total of 234 and a small spread. This game should be hotly contested and easily reach the 110s on each side, which means tons of fantasy goodness, although most of the worthwhile players in the game are expensive, making it difficult to completely stack. Going with Wolves-Pelicans or Spurs-Rockets isn’t a bad alternative, while Nets-Jazz should be mostly avoided with a low total and blowout potential. Scroll down to take a look at my top plays Saturday.

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Thursday, February 25, 2016

Daily Fantasy Basketball Strategy: February 25, 2016

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With the NBA schedule once again balancing out quite a bit after the All-Star break, Thursday brings six games after a manageable 10 on Wednesday. Rather than waste words in the intro, let’s head right to the Vegas lines.

Vegas lines and totals

Golden State (-8) @ Orlando – total of 222.5
Milwaukee @ Boston (-8) – total of 217.5
Oklahoma City (-5) @ New Orleans – total of 222.5
Brooklyn (-1.5) @ Phoenix – total of 208.5
Houston @ Portland (-4.5) – total of 222
San Antonio (-3) @ Utah – total of 193

There are three monster lines on Thursday’s slate, and none of the games project as massive blowout risks. It should be easy to stay away from Spurs-Jazz, a battle of two of the NBA’s best defensive teams, especially with both squads at full strength. Even Bucks-Celtics has a pretty nice line while Nets-Suns features two bad defenses, keeping that game in play for the handful of halfway-decent players on either team.

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Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Daily Fantasy Basketball Strategy: February 23, 2016

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After Monday’s high-scoring seven-game slate that Mr. Zack Rewis so accurately predicted yesterday, Tuesday brings us five more games for our DFS playing pleasure. As is our weekly norm of late, we will be taking some time today to break down the slate using the values over at If you don’t already play DFS at FantasyDraft, you’re missing out. The scoring is the same as DraftKings, but you’ll notice the extra positional flexibility—three guards, three forward/centers and two utility spots—is great for diversifying lineups and limiting chalk.

If you sign up through our referral link, you will receive one month of our Front Office DFS content for free. If you already have a subscription to Front Office, let us know and maybe we can hook you up with a different sign-up reward. Enough about though, as it’s time to get Vegas’ thoughts on Tuesday night.

Vegas lines and totals
Orlando (-6) @ Philadelphia – total of 208.5
New Orleans @ Washington (-5) – total of 213.5
Houston @ Utah (-5) – total of 202.5
Sacramento @ Denver (-1) – total of 223
Brooklyn @ Portland (-11.5) – total of 210.5

Not only is that Kings-Nuggets game projected as the closest of the night, it also has a Warriors game-esque total of 223. Even the Jazz game is in play with a matchup against the uptempo Rockets, and there is truly no game to completely fade tonight, as high scores could be in abundance yet again. Nets-Blazers looks like a potential blowout, but there’s one player in particular I still love in that matchup.

Now, for the top options and values at each position:

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Sunday, February 21, 2016

Daily Fantasy Basketball Strategy: February 21, 2016

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Sunday is a big day in the NBA after a short-slate Saturday, but with the four early games excluded from the big GPPs on most sites, we’re going to focus on the six games starting at 6 p.m. or later. Without further ado, let’s see what Vegas thinks of the Sunday slate.

Vegas lines and totals

Indiana @ Orlando (PK) – total of 200.5
Memphis @ Toronto (-8.5) – total of 202
Charlotte (-6.5) @ Brooklyn – total of 203
Philadelphia @ Dallas (-10) – total of 203.5
L.A. Lakers @ Chicago (-7) – total of 206.5
Utah @ Portland (-3.5) – total of 198

Sunday’s is one of the more balanced slates you’ll see, as all games are within 8.5 points of each other from a totals perspective and no games have a spread larger than 10 points. Lakers-Bulls will certainly be a popular game to choose from as will 76ers-Mavericks, as three of those four teams are pretty bad defensively. Pacers-Magic should be a tight game with the potential for some overtime, but without the extra periods it may not prove to be wise to target heavily in DFS, although there are a few options. It’s time now to take a look at Sunday’s top plays.

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Thursday, February 18, 2016

Daily Fantasy Basketball Strategy: February 18, 2016

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After what seems like a month off due to the All-Star break, the NBA finally returns Thursday with a three-game slate. What was set up to be a very competitive trio of games has been dashed a bit by Jimmy Butler‘s injury, and it’s a tough slate from a DFS perspective with little value to be had barring any big trades at Thursday’s afternoon deadline. Let’s take a look at the Vegas lines to get an idea of what to expect. 

Vegas lines and totals

Utah @ Washington (-1) – total of 197
Chicago @ Cleveland (-12.5) – total of 207
San Antonio (-4.5) @ L.A. Clippers – total of 205.5

Bulls-Cavs is the highest-scoring game, but also has a chance to be over before the final five minutes, possibly stripping the starters of 5-7 fantasy points apiece. The Spurs-Clippers’ total has dropped a few points since it was released, and I still think the under is a good bet at the current total, but it should go down to the wire in L.A. I was surprised to see the Jazz as underdogs even on the road, as they’ve been great since returning to full health, but the total of that game is in line with my projections. Let’s take a look at the top plays at each position.

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Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Daily Fantasy Basketball Strategy: February 10, 2016

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Eighty percent of the NBA is in action Wednesday night, and most of these teams will be playing their last game for a week. This means last-minute bedlam could be on the way with some teams giving players a headstart on their All-Star break rest, so keep an eye on starting lineups and follow me on Twitter @christripodi for updates before lock. Now, for the Vegas lines. 

Vegas lines and totals
San Antonio (-8) @ Orlando – total of 203
Sacramento (-4.5) @ Philadelphia – total of 216.5
Charlotte @ Indiana (-4) – total of 200
Denver @ Detroit (-5.5) – total of 208
Memphis (-3.5) @ Brooklyn – total of 197.5
L.A. Clippers @ Boston (-1) – total of 209
L.A. Lakers @ Cleveland (-15.5) – total of 209
Utah @ New Orleans (-2.5) – total of 194.5
Atlanta (-2.5) @ Chicago – total of 203
Toronto (-6.5) @ Minnesota – total of 207
Golden State (-16) @ Phoenix – total of 220
Houston @ Portland (-4.5) – total of 213

Warriors-Suns has the highest projection, but it’s possible that game is over before the fourth quarter even begins. That leaves Kings-76ers and Rockets-Blazers as the top two contested lines on the night, with Clippers-Celtics coming in a close third. The blowout potential will keep me off most high-priced Cavs (with one definite exception) and Warriors, while every other game is likely to see its starters play a full complement of minutes. Let’s take a look at Wednesday’s top plays.

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Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Daily Fantasy Basketball Strategy: February 9, 2016

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Just three days remain until the NBA’s All-Star break begins, which will be a nice opportunity for those in the DFS world to take a little break from over-analyzing every slate with a fine-toothed comb. Tuesday gives us a solid five-game slate, which is just enough to diversify your lineups but not too much where random variance comes into play to destroy GPP hopes and dreams with a random outburst. As usual, Vegas has an opinion of what will happen, so let’s use that as a launching pad. 

Vegas lines and totals

San Antonio (-7.5) @ Miami – total of 193.5
Washington @ New York (-1) – total of 207
Boston (-4) @ Milwaukee – total of 208
Utah @ Dallas (-2) – total of 185
Houston @ Golden State (-14.5) – total of 230

It may be a five-game night but from a DFS perspective, there are really only three games to choose from. Rockets-Warriors is the obvious choice, but it also has some blowout potential. Meanwhile, Wizards-Knicks and Celtics-Bucks project to be high-scoring as well and much closer, which always provides the potential for overtime and generally guarantees a full workload for starters. Jazz-Mavericks is an absolute no-no with one of the lower totals you’ll see, and Spurs-Heat looks like another slugfest that isn’t terribly appealing for fantasy. With these lines in mind, let’s see who Tuesday’s top plays are.

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Saturday, February 6, 2016

Daily Fantasy Basketball Strategy: February 6, 2016

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With Super Bowl Sunday on tap for tomorrow, Saturday’s slate features an unusual 10 games after 11 on Friday. That means a ton of teams are playing on back-to-back sets, 11 to be exact, which is something the NBA wanted to avoid this year. With the Super Bowl and impending All-Star break, however, it just wasn’t meant to be. Let’s see how Vegas feels about this 10-game slate. 

Vegas lines and totals

Washington @ Charlotte (-4.5) – total of 209
Detroit @ Indiana (-3.5) – total of 203.5
New Orleans @ Cleveland (-9.5) – total of 209
Brooklyn @ Philadelphia (-1.5) – total of 206
Dallas @ Memphis (-6) – total of 192.5
Chicago @ Minnesota (-3) – total of 204
L.A. Lakers @ San Antonio (-16) – total of 204
Utah (-6) @ Phoenix – total of 189
Oklahoma City @ Golden State (-8) – total of 231

Thunder-Warriors is the must-see game of the night, and it’s also the highest-scoring projection by over 20 points. The problem with stacking the game is simple: You can really only fit three high-priced studs in your lineups, and there aren’t very many near-minimum options to make that viable unless you get very lucky. Stacking that game should really be reserved for GPPs, but you’re going to need a piece in cash games too. Let’s see which players from that game and others will lead you into the green.

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Thursday, February 4, 2016

Daily Fantasy Basketball Strategy: February 4, 2016

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We’re trading big slates for small slates every night now that the NBA is planning around Super Bowl Sunday and heading into the All-Star break, meaning there are just four games Thursday after a jam-packed 11-gamer Wednesday. Let’s take a look at what Vegas thinks about the slate before getting into the top plays for action on If you haven’t already signed up at FantasyDraft, sign up through our referral link to receive one month of Front Office content. For more information about FantasyDraft, check out this informative article by Seth Klein as to what makes FantasyDraft such a great spot to play DFS at. 

Vegas lines and totals

New York @ Detroit (-4.5) – total of 202.5
L.A. Lakers @ New Orleans (-10.5) – total of 209.5
Toronto (-1) @ Portland – total of 204
Houston (-7.5) @ Phoenix – total of 214

Lakers-Pelicans and Rockets-Suns are the obvious games to target, with the latter being a bit more appealing thanks to a lower spread and a higher total. I don’t expect the former to be over after three quarters either, despite the hefty spread, so a full game from somebody like Anthony Davis should be in the cards, barring his usual in-game injury. Knicks-Pistons and Raptors-Blazers profile as the tighter games of the night but also the lower-scoring ones, and I’m generally focused on the first two for fantasy value tonight, as those are the teams with bigger defensive holes. Here’s a refresher on the FantasyDraft scoring system. 

Point = +1 PT
Made 3pt. shot = +0.5 PTs
Rebound = +1.25 PTs
Assist = +1.5 PTs
Steal = +2 PTs
Block = +2 PTs
Turnover = -0.5 PTs
Double-Double = +1.5PTs (MAX 1 PER PLAYER: Points, Rebounds, Assists, Blocks, Steals)
Triple-Double = +3PTs (MAX 1 PER PLAYER: Points, Rebounds, Assists, Blocks, Steals)

Now, for the top options and values at each position:

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Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Daily Fantasy Basketball Strategy: February 3, 2016

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Heavy Wednesdays are back in the first week of February, with a whopping 11 games as a follow-up to Tuesday’s short five-game slate. It’s a lot to digest, but it also means there are more viable plays to sort through. Let’s start with the Vegas lines. 

Vegas lines and totals
Cleveland (-9.5) @ Charlotte – total of 205.5
Atlanta (-8.5) @ Philadelphia – total of 207
Indiana (-7) @ Brooklyn – total of 201
Detroit @ Boston (-3.5) – total of 207.5
Orlando @ Oklahoma City (-12.5) – total of 212
Golden State (-10.5) @ Washington – total of 224.5
Miami @ Dallas (-3.5) – total of 193.5
New Orleans @ San Antonio (-13) – total of 206.5
Denver @ Utah (-7) – total of 195.5
Chicago @ Sacramento (-2) – total of 213
Minnesota @ L.A. Clippers (-11.5) – total of 208.5

Warriors-Wizards stands out for obvious reasons, but the game does have some potential to turn into a blowout with the way the Wizards are playing of late. The same goes for Magic-Thunder, Pelicans-Spurs and even Wolves-Clippers, while Bulls-Kings has both a high total and a chance of staying close. Of course, the injury questions surrounding Rajon Rondo and DeMarcus Cousins complicate that one. With the caveat that there are multiple injuries that could really create value or move some mid-tier players into top plays, let’s break down a potential lopsided Wednesday slate.

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