Markieff Morris is a whole new player under Coach Earl Watson so make sure to roster the rejuvenated veteran while his price is still a major bargain. Check out daily fantasy expert Ricky Sanders’ recommended plays to help you fill out your roster for today’s NBA contests.
Kyle Lowry, Raptors, $15,500 – For most of his career, Kyle Lowry has owned Damian Lillard. In their latest meeting (Mar. 15, 2015), Lowry shot just 27.3 percent in 35 minutes and finished with only 24.5 fantasy points. However, in each the three prior face-offs. he dropped at least 43.5 fantasy points. The great thing about Lowry is his ability to fill up the box score; he is averaging 2.8 three-pointers made (3PM), 4.9 rebounds per game (RPG), 6.2 assists per game (APG), 2.3 steals per game (SPG) and 0.5 blocks per game (BPG). In other words, even if Lowry struggles with his shot on any given night, he has a reasonably high floor. Only six teams have allowed more fantasy points to the point guard (PG) position than the Portland Trail Blazers and the Trail Blazers rank as a substantially better defense against shooting guards (SGs). This is a big deal because Toronto’s other main offensive weapon, DeMar DeRozan, plays SG and will have a much more difficult time scoring efficiently. Both will benefit from Portland not possessing a true rim protector and I have no qualms with rostering either player in what is projected to be the closest game on the slate.
Devin Booker, Suns, $11,100 – Houston is favored by eight points over Phoenix which isn’t a whole lot considering they just made a coaching change and they are tied for the second worst record in the Western Conference. I always tell people to project for themselves how they feel games will go and I actually think Houston wins by double-digits with Dwight Howard returning the floor. At the same time, a few Suns are still in play mostly because the team is used to using so this shouldn’t be anything out of the ordinary for the rotation. In one game under Coach Earl Watson, Devin Booker attempted his most shot attempts of the season (19) and scored the second highest point total (27) of his young career. Coach Earl Watson has gone on record telling reporters how he feels about most of the players on his roster and he has said he perceives Booker as a “superstar.” While he feels Markieff Morris is the top scoring option on his team, it certainly looked as though he believed he possessed a star-studded duo on Tuesday and it appears as though Watson will rely on the two of them to carry the offense moving forward. Against a team that allows the second most points per game (106.5), the game environment should allow both to flourish.
Jordan Clarkson, Lakers, $10,000 – It was only a matter of time until the Lakers/Pelicans game was mentioned in this article and expect to continue hearing about game as you read on. In my opinion, this is above and beyond the game of the night. The game features two teams that allow at least 105.1 points per game (PPG), both of which rank bottom five, and their over/under is the second highest of the night. Although the spread of this game is the largest of the night, my gut tells me it’s going to be a whole lot closer than expected. Hell, the Pelicans are the “better” team and only own a .375 winning percentage. Assuming the game remains close and no one is playing defense, there will be plenty of fantasy goodness to be had. The Lakers are a difficult game team to judge 24 hours in advance because Kobe Bryant may or may not play and his status greatly affects everyone else. One player worth rostering regardless of his status will be Jordan Clarskon despite the fact his usage rate (usg%) increases from 19.8 to 22.3 percent when Bryant sits. New Orleans only allows the 16th most fantasy points to opposing PGs but they rank second to last in terms of defensive efficiency to the position. Jrue Holiday is the superior defender of the Pelicans’ two PGs but he comes off the bench and has been playing fewer minutes than Norris Cole. This means Clarkson will play an extended allotment of minutes against a bad defender on an even worse defensive team. He is viable regardless of who suits up around him due to the incredibly favorable game environment.
Anthony Davis, Pelicans, $17,900 – Considering a game by far the best on the slate reasonably leads to liking the best players included in the matchup. No other talent in the Lakers/Pelicans game compares to Anthony Davis and the Lakers match up poorly against him. Defensively the Lakers will have to throw either Julius Randle, Brandon Bass, Tarik Black or Roy Hibbert at Davis and none of them possess nearly the combination of size and speed required to begin to slow down the All-Star power forward (PF). A large percentage of the daily fantasy community is opposed to rostering Davis at this point due to his propensity to leave games early with an injury. I’m not one to live life scared so I say use him on a short slate in a plus matchup. Lakers allow the ninth most PPG and second most BPG to opposing PFs which are two of Davis’ strengths. Julius Randle likes to drive and make aggressive moves at the basket which should lead to both steals and blocks from Davis’ freakishly long arms. Davis has scored at least 20 real points (PTS)re in each of the last five meetings against the Lakers including four 47-plus fantasy point masterpieces. All-in-all Davis is in maybe the best spot of anyone on the slate and should be a solid bet to produce the highest fantasy point total of the night.
Julius Randle, Lakers, $12,000 – The previous tidbit listed the reasons Davis’ skillset could cause mishaps for Julius Randle but that doesn’t mean Randle is worth fading. No, the recent double-double machine is absolutely in play once again because he is the team’s only reliable big man. Roy Hibbert starts and plays around 20 minutes per game (MPG) but he’s soft and doesn’t rebound. Until Larry Nance Jr. went down with a knee injury he was giving the team productive minutes but he is now expected to sit until the All-Star Break. Only Brandon Bass, Ryan Kelly, Tarik Black and Robert Sacre are other possible options in the frontcourt and quite frankly none of them are any good. Therefore Randle is now going to start, play big mins and haul in a majority of their rebounds (REB) by default because the rest of L.A.’s big men stink. In a game that should include plenty of missed shots, Randle should fall into a double-double by accident even if Davis plays stifling defense. If the Lakers can set screens and find ways to force Davis to switch off Randle, the upside could legitimately be a 25-15 game.
Markieff Morris, Suns, $10,500 – While Markieff Morris’ ex-Coach Jeff Hornacek hated him and wanted him out of the rotation, new Coach Earl Watson views him as the team’s number one scorer. In just his first game under the new regime, Morris dropped 30 PTS, 11 REB and six AST…amazingly, those were all season highs! It only took one game to figure out how serious Watson was about featuring Morris so do not fall behind the curve. Morris is a stud with this new coach and he is still priced as the old version of himself who saw sporadic minutes in an unsure role. Do not get left in the dust by leaving Morris off your roster against a Rockets team that allows the most fantasy points to opposing PFs. He’s the definition of a must-start in cash games.