WNBA DFS Breakdown: Thursday

WNBA DFS Breakdown: Thursday

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LINEUP OPTIMIZER

DAILY MATCHUPS  (Vegas Odds, Team Efficiency, Pace, Opposing Stats)

DAILY LINEUPS

VALUE REPORT

TEAM TRENDS

OPPONENT AVERAGES

DraftKings and FanDuel Price Differences

Top 5 FanDuel

PLAYERPOSTEAMFanDuel Price% of BudgetDraftKings Price% of BudgetDifference
Diana TaurasiGPHO730018.3%1150023.0%-4.8%
Chennedy CarterGATL540013.5%860017.2%-3.7%
Kelsey MitchellGIND560014.0%870017.4%-3.4%
Skylar Diggins-SmithGPHO640016.0%960019.2%-3.2%
Paris KeaGNY30007.5%530010.6%-3.1%

Top 5 DraftKings

PLAYERPOSTEAMFanDuel Price% of BudgetDraftKings Price% of BudgetDifference
Leaonna OdomFNY480012.0%42008.4%3.6%
Joyner HolmesFNY410010.3%34006.8%3.5%
Kaleena Mosqueda-LewisFCON37009.3%33006.6%2.7%
Sophie CunninghamGPHO39009.8%36007.2%2.6%
Theresa PlaisanceFCON38009.5%35007.0%2.5%

Atlanta Dream vs New York Liberty

Injuries

Note: All return dates are just estimates

Atlanta

NamePosInjuryStatusReturn
Kalani BrownCKneeOUT9/5/2020
Maite CazorlaGPersonalOUT5/1/2021
Mikayla PivecGNot Injury RelatedOUT5/1/2021
Tiffany HayesGPersonalOUT5/1/2021
Renee MontgomeryGPersonalOUT5/1/2021

New York

NamePosInjuryStatusReturn
Megan WalkerFHipGTD9/3/2020
Sabrina IonescuGAnkleOUT9/8/2020
Asia DurrGPersonalOUT1/1/2021
Han XuCNot Injury RelatedOUT1/1/2021
Marine JohannesGNot Injury RelatedOUT1/1/2021
Stephanie TalbotFNot Injury RelatedOUT4/1/2021
Nayo Raincock-EkunweFNot Injury RelatedOUT5/1/2021
Rebecca AllenFPersonalOUT5/1/2021

2020 Player Stats

Atlanta

PlayerTeamPosGMinPTSREBASTSTLBLK3PA3P%FTATO
Betnijah LaneyAtlG173316.444.41.50.13.739.73.13.4
Courtney WilliamsAtlG1529.914.36.23.50.70.1226.71.12.9
Chennedy CarterAtlG1125172.33.50.90.3240.94.72.9
Elizabeth WilliamsAtlF1729.410.65.41.60.81.1002.91.3
Monique BillingsAtlF1727.98.98.61.41.20.9003.52.1
Shekinna StricklenAtlG1722.16.81.90.80.30.14.538.20.40.6
Blake DietrickAtlG1721.26.11.63.40.70.22.646.70.22.1
Glory JohnsonAtlF1515.75.33.90.60.70.52.529.71.60.9
Kalani BrownAtlC96.63.11.300.10.1000.90.6
Alexis JonesAtlG68.8400.80.503.236.80.31
Jaylyn AgnewAtlF116.41.40.50.3001.223.10.50.5
Brittany BrewerAtlF56.60.8100.60.80000.4
Kaela DavisAtlG21000000000
Erica McCallAtlF15020100000

New York

PlayerTeamPosGMinPTSREBASTSTLBLK3PA3P%FTATO
Layshia ClarendonNYG1625.912.22.84.10.902.436.83.33.8
Kia NurseNYG1525.911.72.21.90.50.15.725.95.21.9
Jazmine JonesNYG1520.410.73.32.11.30.42404.22.6
Amanda Zahui B.NYC1626.49.99.11.80.91.45.136.61.92.5
Kiah StokesNYC1627.86.26.61.20.40.9423.40.41.6
Jocelyn WilloughbyNYG1615.95.11.90.80.80.31.537.51.91.1
Leaonna OdomNYF1620.44.82.40.80.60.40.736.40.90.8
Kylee ShookNYF1515.34.73.30.60.40.50.923.10.91.1
Sabrina IonescuNYG326.718.34.740.706.7353.34.3
Megan WalkerNYF1211.93.71.30.40.302.612.90.30.4
Joyner HolmesNYF139.82.52.20.80.20.11.26.30.80.8
Paris KeaNYG512.260.81.60.802.842.90.41.2

The Skinny

Kicking off the night is a pair of the teams that are similar in most aspects, struggling with efficiency on both ends of the floor while sporting paces above the league average. Neither of the two rebounds particularly well, which resulted in season-high board totals for both Monique Billings, Elizabeth Williams and Betnijah Laney the last time the two teams met. There's little that has changed on that front for this contest, so the trio may be primed for another strong showing Thursday. Laney also proved to be a mismatch on offense, finishing the contest with 30 points on 11-18 shooting. While this contest sits second among the expected scoring outputs, the uptempo nature, combined with the defensive inefficiencies of both clubs, could push this one past the late game if the teams are making shots. Either way, this should feature the most possessions of the night, which should be a boost from a fantasy standpoint. Chennedy Carter was also fairly green the last time the two clubs met, so this could be an opportunity for her to have a big night in the scoring column if her conditioning is up to snuff.

While the Liberty are often on the wrong side of lopsided games, Thursday presents an opportunity for the team to get in the win column As a result, it wouldn't be shocking to see the regular rotation players see a large chunk of minutes. Amanda Zahui B has been a force on the boards recently, collecting double-digit missed shots in four straight games, including a Liberty single-game record 21 versus Las Vegas. Atlanta isn't exactly efficient on the glass or the offensive end of the floor either, which should present Zahui B with a golden opportunity to continue that streak. The Dream also allow abnormally high assist totals (20.8 per game), clearing the next-closest team on the slate by 1.7 per contest. This includes a league-high 3.8 per game from opposing centers, which bodes well for Zahui B to continue a recent trend, having tallied at least three dimes in three of the last four games. Opposing guards have fared particularly well beyond the arc, connecting on a league-high 6.2 three-point attempts per game. This could position Kia Nurse for a strong showing Thursday.

Las Vegas Aces vs Connecticut Sun

Injuries

Note: All return dates are just estimates

Las Vegas

NamePosInjuryStatusReturn
Kelsey PlumGAchillesOUT5/1/2021
Liz CambageCPersonalOUT5/1/2021
Ji-Su ParkCPersonalOUT5/1/2021

Connecticut

NamePosInjuryStatusReturn
Jasmine ThomasGFootGTD9/3/2020
Kaleena Mosqueda-LewisFBackGTD9/3/2020
Jonquel JonesFPersonalOUT2/1/2021

2020 Player Stats

Las Vegas

PlayerTeamPosGMinPTSREBASTSTLBLK3PA3P%FTATO
A'ja WilsonLVAF1631.420.18.81.81.11.7007.11.6
Angel McCoughtryLVAF1620.614.35.22.51.30.31.541.73.21.8
Dearica HambyLVAF1627.512.97.42.41.70.21.6443.42.1
Kayla McBrideLVAG1625.611.72.31.91.20.12.923.43.61.3
Jackie YoungLVAG1624.79.93.92.30.600.5252.81.8
Danielle RobinsonLVAG1622.17.42.23.310.10.5251.81.3
Sugar RodgersLVAG1612.84.31.31.40.30.13.1360.30.8
Lindsay AllenLVAG1514.93.81.52.70.50.1133.30.60.9
Carolyn SwordsLVAC1617.82.94.81.10.20.1000.80.9
Avery Warley-TalbertLVAF382.72.71000010.7
Cierra BurdickLVAF92.60.40.40.2000000.1
Megan HuffLVAF42.800.30000.3000.8

Connecticut

PlayerTeamPosGMinPTSREBASTSTLBLK3PA3P%FTA
DeWanna BonnerConG1733.418.483.22.10.64.9254.8
Alyssa ThomasConF1732.515.18.84.81.90.20.105.5
Jasmine ThomasConG1628.511.51.84.21.30.33.933.91.4
Brionna JonesConC1626.110.85.71.11.60.40.11002.9
Natisha HiedemanConG1716.85.11.81.60.302.4351.2
Bria HolmesConG1418.15.81.91.30.70.21.9370.6
Kaila CharlesConG1615.34.82.20.70.70.31.3451.1
Briann JanuaryConG924.351.230.90.22.2351.1
Kaleena Mosqueda-LewisConF1210.83.31.40.30.20.13.121.60.3
Beatrice MompremierConF166.922.30.10.30.4000.9
Essence CarsonConG611.23.71.70.80.50241.70.3
Theresa PlaisanceConF106.92.10.700.50.31.2250.3
Jacki GemelosConG64.81.80.30.20.301500

The Skinny

Second on the slate is what will likely be the least fantasy-appealing game of the night between the Sun and Aces, who both feature top-five defensive efficiencies, representing the two best of the six teams playing Thursday. The Aces also sport the fourth-best offensive efficiency and the third-fastest pace in the league, which likely salvages some of the output for an expected score of 162. Neither team allows its opponents to convert behind the line often, though a large volume of attempts against the Aces result in 8.2 made threes per contest. If forced into a large number of threes, Jasmine Thomas and DeWanna Bonner would be the likely candidates to pull the trigger the most, averaging 4.9 attempts (Bonner) and 3.9 attempts (Thomas) per game from beyond the arc. The question is whether or not Thomas will suit up for the Sun after missing the previous game due to a foot injury. If she can't go, Kaila Charles remains an intriguing option in likely another start. Las Vegas clears the boards at the best rate on the slate, which could serve as a knock against Bonner, Alyssa Thomas and Brionna Jones, who accumulate a lot of fantasy value on the boards.

In a similar vein, there are few areas of weakness to point to when it comes to the Sun defense either. The Sun are particularly stingy in the assist column (slate-low 17.9 per game) and the three-point column (second-lowest at 6.9 makes per game), which should detract a bit from players who rely on scoring from three to account for much of their scoring. However, the Aces don't have any particular standouts who require scoring from beyond the arc for a fruitful night in the points column and the assists are spread around fairly evenly, so there isn't a ton of loss in either of those areas for any one player. Those who are prone to turnovers may be more suceptible to them Thursday, as the Sun force a slate-high 15.6 per contest. That could slightly impact the values of Dearica Hamby (2.1 TOs per game), Angel McCoughtry (1.8 TOs per game) and Jackie Young (1.8 TOs per game). Centers do clear 9.9 boards per contest versus the Sun (tied with Aces for highest in the league), so there may be some added value to be had for A'ja Wilson. She finished off the previous contest against the Sun with 21 points and seven boards, though she may need more Thursday to justify the high value.

Phoenix Mercury vs Indiana Fever

Injuries

Note: All return dates are just estimates

Phoenix

NamePosInjuryStatusReturn
Nia CoffeyFHandGTD9/3/2020
Brittney GrinerCPersonalOUT9/11/2020
Jessica BrelandFPersonalOUT1/1/2021
Bria HartleyGKneeOUT5/1/2021
Yvonne TurnerGKneeOUT5/1/2021

Indiana

NamePosInjuryStatusReturn
Candice DupreeFBackGTD9/3/2020
Victoria ViviansGKneeOUT9/12/2020
Erica WheelerGIllnessOUT9/21/2020
Jantel LavenderCFootOUT5/1/2021

2020 Player Stats

Phoenix

PlayerTeamPosGMinPTSREBASTSTLBLK3PA3P%FTA
Skylar Diggins-SmithPhoG1730.516.53.24.210.54.943.44.4
Diana TaurasiPhoG1428.919.14.85.11.20.58.636.76.2
Brittney GrinerPhoC1231.817.77.530.31.80.103.9
Bria HartleyPhoG1324.814.62.94.51.20538.53.2
Brianna TurnerPhoF1725.96.97.81.41.21.60.101.6
Alanna SmithPhoF1715.46.23.51.30.20.82.4251.2
Shatori Walker-KimbroughPhoG16166.11.61.610.3246.90.9
Kia VaughnPhoC1716.45.42.91.30.40.30.101
Sophie CunninghamPhoG1717.24.20.70.80.60.11.9251.2
Nia CoffeyPhoF1315.22.72.50.80.40.31.335.30.5
Shey PeddyPhoG314.72.32.73.310.31.7200

Indiana

PlayerTeamPosGMinPTSREBASTSTLBLK3PA3P%FTATO
Kelsey MitchellIndG1732.517.62.22.70.40.16.736.83.42.3
Candice DupreeIndF1729.412.15.72.10.70.30.814.32.51.3
Tiffany MitchellIndG1428.713.33.62.70.70.1421.44.22.6
Teaira McCowanIndC1721.210.67.20.50.40.90.203.91.9
Julie AllemandIndG1733.28.14.35.61.40.43.945.51.52.6
Kennedy BurkeIndG1717.67.421.10.70.22.237.81.91.2
Natalie AchonwaIndF1319.48.65.520.40.70.501.81.9
Lauren CoxIndF1313.53.63.51.40.50.30.55010.8
Victoria ViviansIndG614.24.82.30.50.201.818.21.31
Stephanie MavungaIndF511.8540.600.40.402.21
Kathleen DoyleIndG1391.30.50.90.501.323.50.21
Kamiah SmallsIndG21682.520.50210010
Alisia JenkinsIndF12010000000

The Skinny

Rounding out the slate is another game featuring a pair of teams deficient on the defensive end of the floor, with the Mercury checking in seventh-worst and the Fever owning the worst mark in the league. While the Fever typically slow things down, Phoenix plays at a fast enough rate to keep this game on the fantasy radar. The fact that both teams sit in the top eight in offensive efficiency also results in Vegas liking the contest to produce the highest overall score. Indiana's opponents are converting at a 46.8 percent clip from the field, which bodes well for players who count on scoring for a large portion of their fantasy value. With two of the team's top-four scorers on the year out in Brittney Griner and Bria Hartley, the scoring onus has fallen primarily on Diana Taurasi and Skylar Diggins-Smith of late. The pair could be in line for major outputs Thursday, while secondary scorers of late such as Kia Vaughn and Shatori Walker-Kimbrough could be looked at as potential value plays. Indiana's frontline is fairly stingy on the glass, which could slightly downgrade the remaining boarders for Phoenix, namely Brianna Turner and Taurasi as well to an extent.

Speaking of the boards, Indiana's bigs could be in for a solid night against a Phoenix squad that doesn't have as much rebounding power on the inside with Brittney Griner gone. Brianna Turner has picked up the slack in a big way, averaging 12.2 boards per contest since Griner left the team, but there isn't a ton in terms of depth in the rebounding department behind her. This showed to be a problem for Phoenix the last time the club squared off with Indiana, when Teaira McCowan collected posted season-high totals of 20 points and 13 boards. She could have similar success if given the opportunity Thursday and has been on a rather solid offensive streak of late. Natalie Achonwa is in a similar boat as she continues to split time with her second-year frontcourt mate, posting double-digit scoring in six straight while averaging 6.5 boards and three assists over that span. Candice Dupree (23 points, nine boards, three assists) and Tiffany Mitchell (24 points, four rebounds, two assists) were the two leading contributors in the scoring column the first time these two clubs met, though it's unclear if Dupree will be available Thursday. If she winds up missing, McCowan and Achonwa could see more action in the frontcourt together.

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. Chris Benzine plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: Crispy272001, DraftKings: Crispy27.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chris Benzine
Chris has been a RW contributor since early 2014, focused on Breaking News, MLB Daily Lineups and occasional NFL Team Previews.
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WNBA DFS Breakdown: Sunday
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