DraftKings NBA: Wednesday Cheat Sheet

DraftKings NBA: Wednesday Cheat Sheet

This article is part of our DraftKings NBA series.

TEAM ANALYSIS

Defense To Avoid

Atlanta Hawks vs. Los Angeles Lakers. The Hawks seemed to have tightened up their already impressive defense this season, allowing the fewest points (88.7) and the fifth-lowest field-goal percentage (41.8) while also generating the most turnovers (19.3) per contest. The Lakers mirror the latter figure perfectly for fantasy purposes, as they've handed the ball to the opposition at the highest clip in the league (17.3) while also posting a 43.6 percent success rate from the field that ranks them in the bottom half of the league.

Offense To Use

Portland Trail Blazers at Phoenix Suns: The Hawks are also tempting to slot into this spot, but a potential blowout could lead to them taking the foot off the gas in the second half. Meanwhile, the Blazers should be locked into a back-and-forth battle with the Suns, who have given up the fourth-most points (112.0) per contest and the eighth-highest field-goal percentage (46.1). The Blazers currently rank sixth in points per game (109.5) and also check in within the top 10 in field-goal (46.5) and three-point percentage (38.0).

Teams on a Back-to-Back Set
First game of a back-to-back: Celtics, Thunder
Second game of a back-to-back: Rockets, Sixers, Lakers, Knicks, Pistons, Pelicans, Grizzlies, Jazz, Blazers

DraftKings.com DAILY PLAYER RECOMMENDATIONS

Guards

James Harden, HOU at NY ($11,200):Russell Westbrook ($12,300) makes for an intriguing option despite his elevated price and matchup against Chris Paul, but Harden gets the call at over $1K cheaper while offering just as much upside. The point guard position has suited The Beard splendidly, as he's now averaging 11.8 assists through four games, over four more dimes per contest than last season. That's provided a serious boost to Harden's already-robust fantasy profile, enabling him to already hit the 70-fantasy point mark twice. A matchup against a Knicks defense that's surrendering bottom-10 figures in points (22.7) and field-goal percentage (44.1) to point guards certainly doesn't hurt his case.

Kemba Walker, CHA vs. PHI ($7,500): Walker has unsurprisingly spearheaded the Hornets' attack through the first three games, generating a team-high 29.3 percent usage rate and 49 field-goal attempts while totaling 36.0, 36.25 and 42.0 fantasy points, respectively. All three of those outings represent a fine return at Walker's very reasonable price, particularly against a Sixers defense that's surrendered the most fantasy points (65.3), most assists (12.3), seventh-most points (25.2) and fourth-highest field-goal percentage (48.5) to point guards.

Sergio Rodriguez, PHI at CHA ($4,900): On the other side of the matchup is Rodriguez, who's been one of the more pleasant surprises for the Sixers outside of Joel Embiid during their winless start. Rodriguez has tallied between 26.5 and 35.25 fantasy points over his first three games while taking double-digit shot attempts in each. The Hornets have surrendered the third-most points (30.6) and the highest field-goal percentage (54.1) to point guards in the early going and at a sub-$5K price, makes for a highly appealing value play.

Forwards

Blake Griffin, LAC vs. OKC ($8,600): Given how many shots the Lakers miss and his recent play, Paul Millsap ($8,000) also makes for a strong play Wednesday in the upper tier at power forward. However, given the risk of a blowout in that game, Griffin presents as the top option at just a few hundred dollars more. Fully healthy after an injury-marred campaign last season, Griffin has looked every bit the part, scoring between 34.5 and 55.75 fantasy points in the first three games. Even in the Clippers' most recent game against the Suns, when he took only seven shots, Griffin's 11 rebounds helped him to a 43.75-fantasy point night. The Thunder are actually misfiring on their shots at an even slightly higher clip than the aforementioned Lakers, so Griffin should have plenty of opportunities to haul in some boards in addition to offering his typical production across the rest of the stat sheet.

Taj Gibson, CHI at BOS ($5,600): Gibson has carried the momentum from an excellent exhibition slate into the regular season, as he's posted between 25.5 and 32.5 fantasy points over his first three games. Particularly encouraging is his usage, as Gibson slots in right behind Jimmy Butler and Dwyane Wade on the first unit in that category with a 21.9 percent usage rate, while also ranking fourth on the team in field-goal attempts (33). Meanwhile, although the Celtics have been better down low against power forwards with Al Horford in the paint, they are giving up the fifth-highest field-goal percentage to the position (50.9).

Jon Leuer, DET at BKN ($3,800): Leuer offers an interesting combination of opportunity and cost savings Wednesday against a team vulnerable down low in the Nets. Despite the fact that Tobias Harris has played extremely well over the Pistons' first four games, Leuer has seen a solid dose of minutes, playing between 23 and 28 minutes over that span. He's been over 20 fantasy points in two of those contests and fell just shy of the mark (19.5) in Detroit's most recent game against the Knicks on Tuesday. He's put his time to good use while on the floor also, hauling in nine boards on two occasions, six in another, and taking between seven and nine shot attempts in three of those games. With the Nets giving up the second-most fantasy points (56.5), fourth-most rebounds (14.0) and eighth-highest field-goal percentage (47.9) to power forwards, Leuer stands a good chance of returning strong value at his price.

Centers

Dwight Howard, ATL vs. LAL ($7,600):Timofey Mozgov has been better defensively for the Lakers down low than Roy Hibbert was last season, but it shouldn't be enough to slow Howard down against one of his former teams. The mercurial big man has looked right at home for his hometown Hawks, tallying over 40 fantasy points in the two games in which he's played 30 minutes. He's managed double-doubles in both of those contests and should get plenty of rebound opportunities against a Lakers team that's posting a sub-par 43.6 percent success rate from the field.

Steven Adams, OKC at LAC ($6,000): Adams is being counted on to step up his offensive game this season, in addition to providing the excellent defense for which he's already well-known . He's responded well over the first three games, totaling 28.75 and 42.5 fantasy points in two of those contests, respectively, while posting double-digit shot attempts and scoring in both. Factoring out Russell Westbrook's absurd sky-high usage, Adams is actually just behind Victor Oladipo in field-goal attempts on the Thunder with 36, putting him on pace to more than double the amount of shots he took last season. Despite his prowess on the boards, defense hasn't exactly been DeAndre Jordan's strong suit either, furthering Adams' case at his mid-tier price.

Cody Zeller, CHA vs. PHI ($4,300): With Roy Hibbert set to miss Wednesday's game with his knee injury, Zeller sets up as an appealing value play, particularly with Joel Embiid taking a seat for the Sixers and Jahlil Okafor stepping into the starting lineup. Zeller has played no more than 23 minutes in any of the Hornets' first three games, yet has posted between 20.75 and 23.75 fantasy points over that span. He could be in for a bump in playing time against a Sixers squad that's given up the second-most points (23.7), third-highest field-goal percentage (56.7) and fifth-most fantasy points (57.1) to centers.

INJURY REPORT

For the latest news on injured players heading into the games, check out our Injury Updates page.

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. Juan Carlos Blanco plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: DraftKings: jcblanco22, FanDuel: jc_blanco22, DraftPot: jc_blanco22, FantasyDraft: jc_blanco22, OwnThePlay: jcblanco22.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Juan Carlos Blanco
Winner of the FSWA 2016 Newcomer of the Year Award, Juan Carlos Blanco has been playing fantasy sports for over 20 years and covers NBA, MLB, NFL, CFL and Arena Football for Rotowire.com, including serving as the beat writer for teams in multiple sports. He has previously written for KFFL.com and remains an avid season-long and daily fantasy player in multiple sports as well.
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