Today's postseason edition of the Numbers Game examines the points-league potential of players competing for a championship, with an emphasis on daily leagues.
I'll eschew the DFS scoring for players thus far in the playoffs, as the minuscule sample-size of games makes it less than ideal -- no team has played more than twice. Instead, I'll provide an 'expected' value by juxtaposing each player's season-long stats with the DFS points allowed by their first-round opponents.
To begin, here are the DFS 'point' totals which the 16 playoff teams allowed during the regular season:
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And here's the table as a series of 'weights' which can be applied to individual player stats, thus creating a matchup-weighted expectation for DFS production:
To clarify what I'm doing, here's a quick example using DeMar DeRozan's scoring.
DeMar averaged 6.4 made field goals this season (not including 3-pointers), 0.4 threes, and 6.0 free throws. Using FanDuel's DFS scoring formula (here) that amounts to 20.1 fantasy 'points'. We now factor in the impact of DeRozan's matchup vs. the Wizards, who allowed more free throws than the average playoff team (104.8% of the mean) but allowed fewer field goals (95.1%). Do the same calculation for 3-pointers and DeRozan ends up with a projected 19.7 DFS points for scoring. The shift was subtle in this particular instance (I could have found a more glaring example) but across every player and every category there are some substantial matchup-based shifts in value.
Without further ado, then, here is the list of expected values for all key players in the postseason, adjusted for first-round matchups. I excluded anyone projected to get 10.0 or fewer 'points' and eliminated players who are done for the season, though I may have missed a few.
Note that a player like C.J. McCollum will leap up the board due to a radical change in his role in the playoffs vs. the regular season -- he should exceed 10.66 fantasy points even if Arron Afflalo (shoulder) returns on Wednesday (though McCollum did get an 11.0 despite starting and playing 37 minutes in Game 1). Richard Jefferson is another prime candidate to exceed his projected value due to Chandler Parsons' knee injury. Opportunistic daily-league owners can exploit these exceptions to great advantage, and combined with the objectivity of the above list it should be easy to build a competitive team even if there are only a few games (as there are on Wednesday).
The data presented here is the final product, cleaned up and simplified to make it easier for owners to target the best players with the most favorable matchups. If you're inclined to peruse the whole data set, or use the numbers in your own spreadsheet, click here to view (or copy) my google drive sheet at your leisure.
Send me a message on Twitter if you have any questions or suggestions for future 'Numbers Game' columns, and enjoy the games!