The great thing about sites like FanDuel is that they’re going to offer us NBA games as long as they possibly can. With the first round of the playoffs nearly over, we’re left working with a lot of two-day slates because some days just have one game. The Spurs and Clippers wrap up their series tonight, and we get a nice three-game slate to work with because there are two games tomorrow. This should make things a bit more interesting, and hopefully we’ll see less overlap with player ownership. We should see some exciting games in this next round, and there will be plenty of big games had by the players involved. That said, let’s take a look at today’s picks. Good luck!
Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors, $10300 – Curry steps up when his team needs him, and they’re going to need a whole lot of him against Memphis. Memphis plays terrific defense, but they are going to be without Mike Conley again, which means Curry is going to see a lot of Nick Calathes or Beno Udrih on defense. These guys have no chance of covering him, and with the expectation that games between these two teams should remain close, Curry is poised to have a big game. He’s well worth the price tag as he has well over 50-point upside, and likely has a floor of 40 or more.
Nick Calathes, Memphis Grizzlies, $3800 – Now that we’re in the second round, most of the available players are really good, and therefore, rather expensive. It’s imperative that you find value, and with Nick Calathes likely remaining the starting point guard while Mike Conley is out, he’s almost a must play because of his price and the salary cap relief he provides. Given Memphis will be playing way up in pace, and Calathes does have one of the better matchups of the Grizzlies players, he should pay off his price tag, with the possibility of upside into the mid-20s.
Kyle Korver, Atlanta Hawks, $5800 – Korver should probably be more expensive after having a terrific first round. He does a draw a tougher matchup against the Wizards, but given he’s doing a lot more than just scoring, I think he’s well worth a roster spot. He has high upside relative to his price, and given he’s still fairly cheap, he’s a good source of cap relief that allows you to roster some more expensive players at other positions.
Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors, $7400 – I like Thompson more than Beal as I think Thompson has more upside, and has a safer floor for just $600 more. Memphis plays great defense, but no team can stop Golden State, and Thompson is going to get his shot attempts and points regardless of opponent. He should see a fair amount of Tony Allen, but I don’t think it’s going to matter. Golden State moves the ball so well that someone always seems to get open for a good shot.
Additional Plays: Bradley Beal
Draymond Green, Golden State Warriors, $8200 – Green has been playing out of his mind this postseason, and I expect that to continue against Memphis. He faces a tough frontcourt, but he didn’t seem to have too much trouble with a tough frontcourt last series, so I’m not really worried. Green’s scoring is up, and he’s contributing heavily in rebounding, assists, blocked shots, and steals. He’s a very safe, high-upside play seeing 40 or more minutes, and he’s easily the top option at the small forward position.
DeMarre Carroll, Atlanta Hawks, $6100 – The Hawks have a very balanced offense, but Carroll certainly has the ability to post a big game. He’s going to play heavy minutes, and while he’s not always going to pay off his salary, the fact that he gets 30 or more fantasy points quite often makes him worth considering. You don’t have to spend a lot to roster him, and he’s one of the players I would be targeting to aid in constructing a well-balanced lineup.
Blake Griffin, Los Angeles Clippers, $10500 – You need to make Griffin a priority, as he’s consistently producing around 60 fantasy points each night. This is Game 7, and Griffin is going to get all the minutes he can handle in what should be a close, tough matchup with San Antonio. He’s contributing across the board, and I fully expect him to keep producing at an elite level. Plug him in, then figure out the other positions.
Boris Diaw, San Antonio Spurs, $5200 – Diaw keeps getting it done, paying off his salary and doing just enough on the court to be a viable, and often very good, daily fantasy play. With so many expensive players to choose from, we need to be rostering the cheap players that allow us to maintain some lineup balance, while not exposing us to the risk of having a player post a complete dud. Diaw is a great option, especially when you consider that Paul Millsap and Tim Duncan are not locks to pay off their hefty price tags.
Marc Gasol, Memphis Grizzlies, $8400 – Gasol carried Memphis in the first series, and he’s going to need to do it again if Memphis is going to pull off the upset. The offense runs through Gasol a bit more with Mike Conley out, and it’s also clear that Zach Randolph has taken a back seat to Gasol in the frontcourt. Gasol is taking a ton of shots, and he should be in position to rack up defensive stats given Golden State is going to push Memphis to play much faster than their typical pace. I expect him to play around 40 minutes, and he should easily eclipse 40 fantasy points in that much court time.
Marcin Gortat, Washington Wizards, $7300 – Of Horford and Gortat, I trust Gortat more. Horford disappears too much, and he, in my opinion, has the tougher matchup of the two. Gortat has been more heavily involved in his team’s game plan, and given the Hawks play such a balanced style of play, it’s less likely Horford has a big game. It’s close, but I prefer Gortat given the two are very similarly priced.
Additional Plays: Al Horford