NBA Tournament Thoughts with ShipMyMoney

Tonight on FantasyDraft, we have a $10,000 Pick and Roll with a reasonable $25 entry fee and a 12-entry limit, so we will not see the field overrun by anyone one player with deep pockets.  There are 7 games on the slate, so here are some of the players I am eyeing for my tournament lineups.

 

Guards

DeMar DeRozan, Toronto Raptors, $14,000

DeRozan returns to his Southern California home to take on the Lakers tonight in a game with the second highest Vegas total on the slate.  DeRozan has a 30.6 usage percentage and 21.8 assist percentage this season as he continues to be the primary scoring option on the Raptors and pick up enough peripheral stats that he is not entirely dependent on scoring like he was a couple of years ago.  He will likely draw plenty of Kentavious Caldwell-Pope defense in this one, but the pace of the game and general lack of team defense from the Lakers should overshadow the relatively difficult matchup with Caldwell-Pope.  DeRozan’s price is way too cheap for this matchup.

Lonzo Ball, Los Angeles Lakers, $12,600

Opposite DeMar DeRozan’s Raptors is rookie point guard Lonzo Ball.  There are apparently a lot of people in the DFS community who think that Lonzo is not good at basketball because he has an ugly jumper and because he was embarrassed by Patrick Beverley in his first game in the NBA.  Do not listen to those people.  Ball has a lot of room to improve as a scorer, but he contributes in so many ways that his current price tag is absurd and people continue not to roster him.

Ball has a 20.6 percent usage percentage this season to go along with his 35 percent assist percentage and 12.1 rebound percentage.  It was easy to forget he was even on the floor in his last game against the Wizards, yet he still managed 6 points, 10 assists, 8 rebounds, a block and a steal to produce a very nice fantasy line for his price tag.  He has the upside to do MUCH better if his shot happens to be falling at even a reasonably decent rate.  Do not overlook Ball in this spot.

Forwards

Kristaps Porzingis, New York Knicks, $14,000

Porzingis is going to be popular but there are times in tournaments that you need to just suck it up and play one of the most popular guys on the slate.  That is the case with Porzingis at this price tag.  He is coming off a poor performance against Boston where he shot just 3-14 from the field and managed to grab only 5 rebounds, but he gets an elite matchup tonight against Brooklyn.  Porzingis averaged 1.45 DraftKings points per minute in three games against the Nets last season and that was with Carmelo Anthony on the floor in every game and Derrick Rose active in two of the three.  Porzingis is in a phenomenal bounce-back spot tonight.

LaMarcus Aldridge, San Antonio Spurs, $13,300

Aldridge has dominated for the Spurs this season after signing a contract extension in the preseason.  He is benefitting greatly from Kawhi Leonard’s absence.  Aldridge leads the NBA by a wide margin with 10.5 post-up points per game this season and his 1.27 points per possession on post-ups ranks in the 96th percentile.

Aaron Gordon struggled mightily in the post defensively last season, allowing 1.06 points per possession which ranked in the bottom-fifth of the league.  He has proven he is a strong on-ball defender but Aldridge’s strengths match up with Gordon’s weaknesses in this one. Add in that the Magic are playing at the 4th-fastest pace in the NBA and Aldridge’s 30.3 percent usage percentage this season and he is an easy play tonight.

 

Centers

Dwight Howard, Charlotte Hornets, $12,300

Howard faces his former Houston team tonight in Charlotte.  I normally do not care about “revenge” narratives but, in cases where the matchup is excellent anyway, they do not hurt- especially with Howard who seems like a pretty vengeful dude.

D12 faced the Rockets twice last season with the Rockets, posting lines of 20 points and 15 rebounds and 24 points and 23 rebounds.  He has been excellent with the Hornets this season, leading the NBA in defensive rebound percentage at 40.4 percent and total rebound percentage at 29.7 percent.  It is also a pace-up game for the Hornets so there should be even more rebounds to go around.

Jakob Poeltl, Toronto Raptors, $9,900

Poeltl’s projection relies on news about Lucas Noguiera, who is a game-time decision tonight after practicing yesterday.  If Noguiera is going to play, it makes Poeltl a very risky option as he would have only played about 18 minutes against the Spurs when Noguiera was active had Noguiera not been in foul trouble in the first half.  If Noguiera sits, however, this is a spot that Poeltl can dominate.  He came off the bench and played 26.4 minutes against the Warriors, grabbing 14 rebounds and scoring 12 points.  The super athletic big man will be in line for another big performance in a pace-up game against a Lakers’ frontcourt that struggles on the glass as long as he gets the minutes.

Best of luck in taking second place tonight! ~ ShipMyMoney

Adam Scherer

Adam Scherer

Adam Scherer (aka ShipMyMoney) has been playing full time DFS for the last two years since taking a “sabbatical” from law school. He specializes in MLB and NBA and has a couple live finals appearance under his belt along with a couple high five figure victories in tournaments. Adam likes to dig into the analytics as well as use the “eye test” particularly for his pitcher analysis and understanding NBA game flow and coaching strategies. You can find his work on FanVice.com for both articles as well as the Deeper Dive live video show airing regularly at 5pm ET or on Twitter @ShipMyMoneyDFS

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