DraftKings NBA: Saturday Cheat Sheet

DraftKings NBA: Saturday Cheat Sheet

This article is part of our DraftKings NBA series.

Saturday's NBA main slate features seven games and begins at 7:00 PM Eastern time. While many of this slate's games have similar over/unders, some are more preferable for targeting than others, especially given the opportunities created for some players by their teammates' absences.

Slate Overview

Games to Target

Wizards (-2) vs. Timberwolves O/U: 224

The rest of Minnesota's rotation will need to step up to fill the void left by the absence of the team's usual fulcrum on offense. Doing so shouldn't be difficult against the defensively challenged Wizards, who allow 119.0 points per game but make up for it by scoring 119.2 themselves.

Warriors (-1) vs. Hornets O/U: 223

The basketball in this one may not be pretty, but neither of these teams plays much defense, with both allowing over 117.5 points per game. 

Games to Fade

Nuggets (-4) at Magic O/U: 204.5

This game's line is over 14 points lower than any other, as the Magic are adept at slowing the pace down and the Nuggets also have an excellent defense. 

Nets (-1.5) at Pistons O/U: 224

There are some questions about how the rotations will shake out with both teams finishing out back-to-backs, and the pace is likely to be slower than usual because of that factor as well.

Positional Breakdown

The center position is greatly depleted in this slate, but it's still tied with point guard for the most available $7,000-plus options at seven apiece. Small forward brings up the rear in that regard with only five, and that's the position with the most immediate drop-off from the top players.

Injury Situations to Monitor

Joel Embiid and Karl-Anthony Towns are both serving suspensions for their on-court altercation. 

Hassan Whiteside is questionable for Portland after missing practice Friday with knee soreness, and Zach Collins (shoulder) is out. Skal Labissiere ($3,000) could be called upon to log heavy minutes, but at least Portland's depleted frontcourt won't have to contend with Embiid.

Elite Players

Bradley Beal's ($9,700) shooting a career-low 39.1 percent, yet he's still pouring in a career-high 26.8 PPG, up 1.2 from last season's mark. He's adding in career highs in RPG (5.8) and APG (7.8) for the Wizards, and he'll be by far the most talented offensive player on the floor for either team with Towns out.

Ben Simmons ($8,700) will be tasked with doing even more than usual offensively, as the well-rounded 23-year-old will be working without fellow lottery talent Embiid. With the lack of depth at small forward, it's recommended you use Simmons there rather than his other eligible position at point guard. The only other small forward priced over $7,300 — Giannis Antetokounmpo ($10,700) — will be finishing off a back-to-back set, making him tough to trust at his lofty valuation.

D'Angelo Russell ($8,900) should provide the majority of the offense for the Stephen Curry-less Warriors. In what actually looks like a winnable game for this depleted Golden State squad, expect Russell to carry a heavy volume load.

Expected Chalk

Al Horford ($7,000) finished with 12 points and 16 rebounds Wednesday against Minnesota, as Embiid was ejected in the third quarter. Now, he'll get to play a full game without Embiid against the injury-riddled Blazers front court.

Thomas Bryant ($7,200) has three double-doubles in his first four games and is averaging 14.5 PPG, 10.2 RPG and 2.2 blocks per game. With Minnesota shorthanded in the backcourt, the 22-year-old center is primed to continue his breakout campaign with another strong performance for the Wizards.

Sticking in the Timberwolves-Wizards matchup, Andrew Wiggins ($7,100) should be the focal point of Minnesota's offense with Towns absent. Wiggins is currently averaging 20.2 PPG but has previously delivered as much as 23.6 PPG back in 2016, and his scoring should be on full display against a Wizards team that hasn't shown much interest in playing defense this season, continuing a trend from last season.

Key Values

Cody Zeller ($6,400) has been a force on the inside with 15.0 PPG and 13.5 RPG through the Hornets' first four games. While he's not giving you much outside those two categories, Zeller's scoring and rebounding should be enough to make him a strong play against the vulnerable Warriors.

Noah Vonleh ($4,200) should be the primary beneficiary of Towns' absence from a playing time perspective. He's playing just 14 minutes per game with his new club after averaging 8.4 PPG and 7.8 RPG in 25 minutes per game as a member of the Knicks last season. Vonleh's likely to exceed last year's playing time average here, making him a double-double threat against a Wizards team that ranks among the 10 worst defensively with 119.0 points allowed per game.

Fred VanVleet ($6,300) should be a strong option to fill either guard spot against a Bucks team that could be a step slow finishing up a back-to-back set. VanVleet has excelled in a larger role for Toronto this season, averaging 17.0 PPG and 7.2 APG in 37 minutes per contest.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Sasha Yodashkin plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: Youngsash, DraftKings: Yashdogg,Yahoo: Sasha, Fanball: Yashdogg.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sasha Yodashkin
Sasha has been contributing NFL, NHL, NBA, MLB and Tennis content to RotoWire since 2015, with an emphasis on DFS. He is a huge New York sports fan who has been playing fantasy sports since middle school.
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