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Welcome to the weekend, RotoBallers, and happy March Madness for all those who celebrate. We have our typical small slate on tap in the NBA tonight, and it’s highlighted by four games with implied totals of at least 232 points. The Celtics-Jazz matchup rates out as the top game to target, thanks to its combination of a high implied total, a fast projected pace, and a poor ranking in fantasy points per game allowed over on the Jazz side of the ball.
Seven teams are playing in the second half of a back-to-back set, which makes analyzing this slate very difficult as we will likely see an avalanche of players ruled out for “rest” purposes. Keep your eyes peeled for news, as we’ll need it to feel comfortable with value plays tonight. Let’s get to it.
Here is my daily
Desmond Bane, vs. GSW (FD: $8,100, DK: $7,800)
Bane is in complete control of this offense with Ja Morant still sidelined. He’s averaging a 27.4% usage rate and 1.23 FPTS/min with the star (plus Steven Adams and Brandon Clarke) off the court this season, and he’s putting up 40-50 DK point games regularly. He’s still at an affordable mid-range price point on both sites, and we have to love his prospects against Golden State as long as his rostership doesn’t get out of hand.
The Warriors allow the sixth-most fantasy points per game to opposing shooting guard this season, and the rank #1 in pace (Memphis ranks seventh). This game projects to be high-scoring and fast-paced, which means we should be interested in targeting the highest-usage players in this game. Fire up the classic Spiderman villain in Bane tonight. Tyus Jones
Nickeil Alexander-Walker, vs. TOR (FD: $4,200, DK: $3,600) If Jaylen Nowell is ruled out
“NAW” saw an uptick in minutes last night after star Anthony Edwards exited the game with an ankle injury. He played 27 minutes, but the result was similar to his previous string of games as he didn’t do much producing on the fantasy scoring side. With Edwards presumably out tonight and fellow backup guard Nowell still ailing, Alexander-Walker will be asked to step up against the Raptors in Toronto. His rates don’t look great, but he will be needed at a low salary and a projected 26 minutes.
Also consider: Tyus Jones, Alex Caruso, James Harden, Monte Morris, Marcus Smart, Patrick Beverley, Mike Conley
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Jaren Jackson Jr., vs. GSW (FD: $8,500, DK: $7,700)
Triple-J is about as volatile as it gets; we have known this for some time now. His aggressive playing style tends to result in foul trouble, which makes his playing time and fantasy production thought to predict. However, he has put up 45.25 and 43.25 DK points over his last two games and he has generally stepped up to the plate and produced since Morant was excused from the team.
He averages the highest usage rate (28%) and FPTS/min (1.24) on the team with Morant, Adams, and Clarke off the floor, and his matchup against the Warriors is a favorable one. Golden State allows the most fantasy points per game to opposing power forwards over their last 15 games.
Draymond Green, vs. MEM (DK: $6,100)
Green isn’t always the sexiest play in the world, because he doesn’t have a high usage rate and defers to the playmakers and scorers in Curry, Poole, and Thompson. However, he does get the job done in other ways and seems to scrap his way to at least 30 DK points more often than not. The Grizzlies allow the ninth-most fantasy points per game to opposing power forwards this season and both teams rank very high in pace of play, so there will be plenty of fantasy points to go around tonight.
Also consider: Dillon Brooks, Taurean Prince, Dillon Brooks, Jaden McDaniels, Jimmy Butler, Kyle Anderson, Harrison Barnes, Scottie Barnes
Joel Embiid, vs. IND (FD: $12,000, DK: $11,400)
Embiid has recently stepped up his impressive level of play as he looks to dethrone Jokic from his MVP reign, going for 70.5 and 69.75 DK points over his last two games. The latter score is even more impressive, considering he racked up that number in only 29 minutes in a blowout last night over the Hornets.
The Hornets allow the most fantasy points per game to centers, but Embiid’s matchup tonight is arguably better as the Pacers allow the third-most fantasy points per game to the position and rank even worse in defensive efficiency. This game should remain close enough for the big man to put up another ceiling game – he’s my favorite pay-up option on the slate.
Also consider: Rudy Gobert, Jakob Poeltl, Xavier Tillman, Domantas Sabonis
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