This article is part of our Category Strategy series.
Postseason rotations tend to get a lot tighter, but there's still value to be found on each team. Ideally, those plays will match up well with specific weaknesses on the opposition. The purpose of this series will be to take a bit of a deeper dive into some typically useful DFS metrics and see where there may be exploitable spots that can be attacked with modestly priced players. Without further ado, let's dive into the two conference finals series utilizing this perspective:
Toronto (2) vs. Milwaukee (1)
Season series: Bucks 3, Raptors 1
Notable Raptors metrics/areas to exploit: 6th-highest shooting percentage allowed to point guards (45.4)
Bucks value play(s) to consider: George Hill, PG
Hill was a valued source of offense off the bench for the Bucks in the semifinal round against the Celtics. The veteran scored in double digits in each of the last four games and averaged 14.2 points on 57.9 percent shooting, including 46.7 percent from three-point range. That followed a solid, albeit slightly less prolific, first-round series against the Pistons where Hill put up 9.5 points per contest on 48.2 percent shooting. Just as encouraging was the fact Hill averaged well over 20 minutes per contest in both series.
Given his extensive postseason experience and the hot hand he carries into the series, he could certainly play a significant role versus a Raptors squad against which he averaged 11.0 points (on 48.1 percent shooting, including 46.2 percent from three-point range) in four regular-season meetings.
The biggest concern for Hill may be the presence of Malcolm Brogdon, who made his return from injury in Game 5 against Boston. Brogdon will come off the bench for Game 1, but coach Mike Budenholzer confirmed he'll see more than the 17 minutes he played in Game 5, which could potentially cut into Hill's workload.
Bucks metrics to exploit: Most three-point attempts allowed per game (36.3); 8th-highest 3PT% allowed (36.1%); 3rd-highest corner 3PT% allowed (41.3%); 2nd in pace (103.3)
Raptors value play to consider: Danny Green, G
Green isn't exactly consistent on a night-to-night basis, but he's playing heavy minutes in the postseason and is certainly well qualified to exploit Milwaukee's propensity for allowing long-distance success to two-guards. The veteran sharpshooter was able to generate a trio of double-digit scoring efforts versus the Sixers in the semifinal round, even as he shot just 36.3 percent overall during the series.
However, Green did drain a respectable 31.6 percent of his attempts from behind the arc, which was preceded by a 31.8 percent showing against the Magic in the first round. Green typically uncorks well over half of his attempts from distance, so he could certainly be a rewarding value play relative to salary in certain games against the Bucks, especially considering he post the second-highest three-point percentage (45.5) in the league in the regular season.
Portland (3) vs. Golden State (1)
Season series: Warriors 2, Trail Blazers 2
Notable Trail Blazers metric/area to exploit: 6th-highest offensive efficiency rating allowed to small forwards (22.5); 10th-highest three-point percentage allowed to small forwards (36.5)
Warriors value play to consider: Andre Iguodala, F
Iguodala repeatedly came through as a value play during the semifinal round versus the Rockets, as Steve Kerr inserted his versatile veteran into the starting five as part of a small-ball lineup. Iggy responded with five double-digit scoring efforts in six games and averaged 13.5 points (on 60.4 percent shooting, including 42.1 percent from three-point range), 4.7 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.2 steals across 34.5 minutes versus Houston. Similar output could certainly be in the cards versus the vulnerable Trail Blazers, especially with Kevin Durant (calf) already set to miss Game 1 at minimum and Iguodala averaging just under a fantasy point per minute on both DraftKings and FanDuel without his All-Star teammate on the floor in Game 6 against the Rockets.
Notable Warriors metric/area to exploit: 8th-highest three-point percentage allowed to opposing second units (34.8); 6th-highest opponent FG% around the rim;
One of the Warriors' few true weaknesses, on paper, may add a bit of intrigue to what already shapes up as a highly interesting series. Golden State's tendency to allow three-point shooting to opposing second units could pave the way for some solid fantasy returns from both Curry, who should have a nice dose of extra incentive facing his brother in such a high-stakes series, and Hood, a somewhat unsung hero of the epic semifinal round battle versus the Nuggets who's well-equipped to exploit any weaknesses to three-point shooting as well.
Curry does come into the series cold, as he's averaged just 5.4 points in each of the first two series while shooting under 30.0 percent overall in both. However, he did shoot 33.3 and 34.3 percent from three-point range against the Thunder and Nuggets, respectively. What's more, despite his struggles, he averaged 20.4 minutes over the seven games against Denver. And, it's certainly worth noting Curry checked in with the third-highest three-point percentage (45.0) in the league during the regular season. Portland may also be without Hood to begin the series due to his bone bruise, so a chunk of those minutes could end up being redistributed to Curry.