Ricky Don’t Lose That Number

Playing in game that projects the Timberwolves to score approximately 109 points, Ricky Rubio should be a building block for DFS lineups. Check out daily fantasy expert Ricky Sanders’ recommended plays to help you fill out your roster for today’s NBA contests.

Guards:

C.J. McCollum, Trail Blazers, $13,000 – When analyzing the Trail Blazers, typically the first name that stands out is Damian Lillard. However, Lillard is only averaging 42.3 fantasy points per game (FPPG) this month, which at his current price of $17,000, means he is consistently missing value. Meanwhile, C.J. McCollum has now eclipsed 40 fantasy points in four of his past six games. If McCollum were simply to produce exactly 40 once again, he would eclipse 3x value. McCollum and the Trail Blazers will be squaring off against the worst defensive team in the NBA (the Kings) on the second end of a back-to-back. Oh by the way, the Kings play at the fastest pace which is conducive to McCollum’s style. Earlier this year, McCollum dropped a ridiculous 74.25 fantasy points against the Kings earlier this season without Lillard. With the star point guard (PG) back in the rotation, expectations clearly have to be tempered a bit, but a solid game should still be expected. At this price, McCollum is probably best suited for cash games but is a rock solid cash option for sure.

Ricky Rubio, Timberwolves, $12,200 – Trusting Ricky Rubio is usually a risky proposition because he is one of the more volatile assets in the league. First of all, Rubio has issues scoring the basketball which leads to wildly inconsistent outcomes based on whether or not his shot is falling. However, a matchup against the Phoenix Suns should not result in a wide array of outcomes. Against a team that ranks dead last in efficiency to opposing backcourts and allows the second most points per game (PPG), Rubio will have plenty of opportunities to score…but especially to dish the basketball. The last time these two teams met, Rubio dished out 17 assists (AST) and even stole four passes. Considering Devin Booker is coming off a game where he turned the ball over nine times, more steals (STL) should be in Rubio’s future as well. As long as he manages to eclipse double-digit points, he will likely enjoy the double-double bonus that FantasyDraft’s scoring system awards and consequently hit value.

Raymond Felton, Mavericks, $8,100 – Sunday marked the second consecutive productive game for Raymond Felton which is no coincidence. Last game marked the start of a new era for the Mavericks as Chandler Parsons was announced likely to miss the remainder of the season. Felton started in his absence, played 38 minutes and scored 32.75 fantasy points. He followed up that performance with 15 points (PTS), five AST and four rebounds (REB) against the Kings on Sunday (31 fantasy points). Clearly his role is vastly expanding due to the absence of one of the team’s impact players and Deron Williams is expected to sit out for a second straight game on Monday. If there was any worry about his minutes allotment not being reliable due to only Parsons missing, the absence of Williams as well certainly solidifies the reliability. At just $8,100, it’s hard to imagine Felton completely flopping with the active roster they’ll be heading into this game with, so start him with confidence in cash.

Forwards/Centers:

Karl-Anthony Towns, Timberwolves, $14,500 – One of my favorite strategies in tournaments is using two players who run the pick and roll together because their production often correlates with one another. If Ricky Rubio’s AST total explodes on a given game, it’s going to be partially due to Towns finishing multiple times on the pick and roll and/or pick and pop. Again, it’s hard to ask for a better matchup for the two against one of the NBA’s two worst defenses. Overall the Suns allow the 11th fewest fantasy points opposing centers (Cs) but they only put up a solid fight against the position when Tyson Chandler is active. Chances are Chandler will not suit up for this game and, therefore, Alex Len will continue to start and play a majority of the minutes at the position. In a game where the Timberwolves are expected to score 109 points according to masseyratings (second highest of anyone on the slate), there shouldn’t be too much worry about the individual matchup for Towns. If Towns were just to reach his March average of 42.8 FPPG, he would reach 2.95x value. Assuming you think Towns should put together an above-average performance against of the two worst defenses in the league, start him…start him everywhere.

Paul Millsap, Hawks, $14,200 – On Saturday, Paul Millsap was forced to leave the game and received 10 stitches over his right eye. All reports indicate he should be fine moving forward which is excellent news heading into a matchup against a demoralized Bulls team. Even their own beat writers tweet like they are amidst doomsday every time the Bulls step on the court. This month, the Bulls are allowing 106.6 PPG which is quite an uptick (in a bad way) from their 103.2 PPG average for the season. Essentially they have reached a point where I am comfortable just starting the opposing team’s best player against them especially if that player will not draw an individual matchup versus Jimmy Butler. Since Millsap plays power forward (PF) position, there is no worry about Butler potentially covering him. In Millsap, we’re talking about a player who has scored 40-plus fantasy points in three straight games including a whopping 59.25 fantasy points in Detroit the last time out. If however Millsap cannot play, Al Horford would emerge as a core play as he’d certainly need to step up his production in that scenario. Still, it does not appear Millsap will sit so there’s probably no need to worry. If he’s listed in the starting lineup against the Bulls then he belongs in your DFS lineup(s) as well.

DeAndre Jordan, Clippers, $14,100 – Only three teams allow more FPPG to opposing Cs than the Celtics (in descending order): 76ers, Pelicans and the Lakers. Blake Griffin has been cleared to play and will now serve a four game suspension, meaning his is nearing a return. DeAndre Jordan’s price will take time to depreciate to a fair level once Griffin is activated so there are only less than a handful of opportunities left to take advantage of his production this season. Without Griffin, Jordan is averaging a whopping 14.3 PPG, 14.6 rebounds per game (RPG) and 2.2 blocks per game (BPG) en route to 39.8 FPPG. What more needs to be said? Roster this enhanced version of Jordan before it is too late and Griffin becomes the preferred Clipper big to roster down the stretch.

*Stats are accurate as of Sunday, Mar. 27

Ricky Sanders

Ricky Sanders

Ricky Sanders is a fantasy sports expert with over 15 years of playing experience. After starting several freelance fantasy sports blogs, Ricky moved up in the fantasy industry when he joined Going9 Baseball. He wrote fantasy baseball content and had a weekly radio spot on the site’s SiriusXM Satellite Radio show. Shortly thereafter, in early 2013, Ricky joined RotoExperts as a three-sport fantasy contributor, eventually becoming one of the site’s lead basketball writers. While writing for RotoExperts, Ricky was introduced to daily fantasy sports and immediately fell in love. With help from some of his mentors, some of the best DFS players in the world, he honed his skills and became the daily fantasy expert he is today. When RotoExperts created a daily-focused website called DailyRoto.com, Ricky was brought on as one of the main contributors. He still makes frequent appearances on the RotoExperts SiriusXM Radio show and on the FNTSY Sports Television Network, talking daily fantasy sports. He also continues to write for a few DFS content sites: RotoCurve and The Fantasy Fix. Ricky is a proud and active member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association. He has agreed to be a writer and representative for the FantasyDraft brand and serves as an ambassador to the site. He has no more access to the site than the typical user. Don’t hesitate to contact Ricky with questions on Twitter @RSandersDFS.

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