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NBA DFS Bargains - Monday

by Ryan Knaus

It's a nine-game night in the NBA this Monday, leaving plenty of DFS value to mined. From guys you almost must target in DRAFT to potential punt plays on FanDuel and DraftKings, we're here to break down the biggest values to be found. Let's begin with a quick look at Vegas' expectations for tonight's slate:





Heat at Pistons


Pistons -3.5

Rockets at Pacers


Rockets -1.0

Cavaliers at Magic


Magic -4.5

Bulls at Knicks


Knicks -2.5

Pelicans at Thunder


Thunder -4.5

Celtics at Nuggets


Nuggets -1.5

Raptors at Jazz


Raptors -2.0

Grizzlies at Warriors


Warriors -14.0

Timberwolves at Clippers


Clippers -5.5


Bear in mind that injuries and lineups are subject to change at any moment! For the very latest news, stay tuned to Rotoworld’s injury report and player news pages!


We open with a look at tonight's options in DRAFT leagues!


DRAFT Bargains


Nikola Vucevic (DRAFT projection: 39.7) - If I don't land Karl-Anthony Towns (see below), I'll be happy to grab Vuc with my second or third pick. He's been terrific this year with 42.3 FP per game, and the only centers above him are Anthony Davis, Joel Embiid, Nikola Jokic and Rudy Gobert (by a sliver). We're also looking at a fantastic matchup vs. a reeling Cleveland team with no defense to speak of, which has been torched by centers to the tune of 60.5% shooting and 16.0 boards per game. They're also giving up 3.4 blocks to centers this season, tied for 3rd-most in the league.


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Kyle Lowry (DRAFT projection - 34.4) - Lowry had fallen below 39 FP just once this entire season! That was back on Oct. 19 in the Raptors' second game, and he still hit 31.2 in a tough matchup that night. Why he'd be projected this low is unclear. Yes, the Jazz are a perennially tough matchup but K-Low has been a fantasy metronome and he just set a Raptors record with nine consecutive games of double-digit assists. He's averaged a modest 32.0 over the past two games, so I'm not worried about this being the second half of a back-to-back set, and his stock will only improve if Kawhi Leonard (jammed foot/ankle) is ultimately ruled out.


Blake Griffin (DRAFT projection: 41.1) - The Heat are 15th in Defensive Rating this season, and 12th in pace, and they're not shutting down PFs routinely or anything, so the matchup is solid tonight. And similar to Lowry's valuation, I don't get why Blake is available at a discount -- he's hit a minimum of 42.5 FP all but one game this season, and he's coming off a massive 38/13/6 line that netted 61.6 FP. I'm riding with him.



FanDuel Bargains


Bam Adebayo (C, $3,800) & Kelly Olynyk (PF, $4,800) - The key here is that Hassan Whiteside is out with a knee injury, opening up about 28 minutes at the center position. Bam should draw the start vs. Andre Drummond and the Pistons, who have been middle-of-the-pack vs. centers overall but are near the top in points allowed (26.9) and FG% allowed (57.4%). With such low prices tonight, it'll be hard to avoid Bam and/or Olynyk unless you're being a contrarian. Be aware that both guys are priced higher on DraftKings, which undercuts the pure value-oriented upside.


Alec Burks (SG, $3,500 FanDuel / $3.2 DraftKings) - When Donovan Mitchell was out last Friday, rookie Grayson Allen got the start and put up nine points and one assist with four fouls in 27 minutes. Ugly stuff. Alec Burks (hand) was also out for that game, though, and you'd think that with Burks returning to action tonight he'll slot into most of the 27 minutes Allen occupied last Friday. The fact that he hasn't played since Oct. 27 adds to the risk for Burks, of course, but it also guarantees he'll have low ownership in GPP. Most sites are focused on Allen as the punt-value here so I’m swimming upstream by betting against the rookie.


Alfonzo McKinnie (SF, $3,700 FanDuel / PF, $3,200 DraftKings) - McKinnie has been a great story this season and over the past four games he's averaging a tidy 20.9 FP over the Warriors past four games. His stock gets a strong bump tonight with Andre Iguodala resting and Shaun Livingston (foot) unavailable, and at near-rock-bottom salary he's too good to pass up. He's safer than Burks and I'll have a lot of exposure to McKinnie to pay up elsewhere.


Allonzo Trier (SG, $3,900 FanDuel / PG ,$4,200 DraftKings) - The appeal of Trier is two-fold. First, he averaged 22.4 FP over a three-game span prior to a quiet night vs. the Wizards on Sunday. Second, he should benefit the most if Tim Hardaway Jr.'s lower back injury sidelines him -- he said it felt like a nerve-related issue and coach David Fizdale admitted he should have pulled THJ sooner on Sunday. Fizdale loves Trier and wants him on the court in crunch time "more often than not," all of which suggests his floor going forward is around 20 FP with minutes in the 24-26 range. If Hardaway is out, those numbers could spike.

Ryan Knaus
Despite residing in Portland, Maine, Ryan Knaus remains a heartbroken Sonics fan who longs for the days of Shawn Kemp and Xavier McDaniel. He has written for Rotoworld.com since 2007. You can follow him on Twitter.