DraftKings NBA: Saturday Cheat Sheet

DraftKings NBA: Saturday Cheat Sheet

This article is part of our DraftKings NBA series.

Slate Overview 

MIA (-3.5) vs. IND, O/U: 223.5

DAL (-3) vs. TOR, O/U: 215

DET vs. CHI (-9), O/U: 214.5

NOP vs. MIN (-6.5), O/U: 228.5

MIL (-8) vs. SAS, O/U:

PHX vs. POR (-2.5), O/U: 232

MEM vs. LAC (-3.5), O/U: 226.5

While the Hawks-Cavaliers matchup isn't included on the main slate, look for it to be full of DFS monsters, as the Hawks' lineup is full of great top-tier value with Trae Young, John Collins and Clint Capela. Bogdan Bogdanovic, Kevin Huerter, De'Andre Hunter and Cam Reddish also offer solid mid-tier options, as the fast-paced Hawks' style allows everyone to eat.

The matchup against the Cavs should mean a high-scoring contest, while guys like Collin Sexton, Jarrett Allen and Ricky Rubio can result in great value, even if their team is not the favorite to win. Darius Garland remains questionable for action, which will be a big factor in determining Rubio's value. 

Also look to Suns-Blazers for a high-scoring contest full of great DFS picks, led by the top-tier guards Chris Paul, Devin Booker, Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum. Jusuf Nurkic could end up being a solid mid-tier option at center, as he is such a big body and going up against the younger, slighter Deandre Ayton should offer him the advantage down low. Then, look for value with guys like Mikal Bridges, Jae Crowder and even JaVale McGee on the Suns, while Norman Powell, Robert Covington and Larry Nance Jr. all have the capability to emerge as unexpected heroes for the Blazers. Both teams like to push the ball and shoot from long range, which always helps pad the stats across the board. 

Injuries to Monitor

Darius Garland (ankle): Questionable

Garland missed the Cavs' contest on Friday, which left the starting job to Ricky Rubio. If Garland remains out, look for solid value with Rubio once again, while Collin Sexton will also see a few more looks and opportunities to rack up assists. 

Kyle Lowry (ankle): Questionable

If Lowry ends up sidelined it would open up major minutes for Tyler Herro, who already is coming off a great game in the Heat's season-opener, where he tallied a team-high 27 points, in 24 minutes off the bench. 

Caris LeVert (back), T.J. Warren (foot): OUT

The extended absence of Warren and LeVert leaves more room for rookie, Chris Duarte to continue to go to work. In addition, Justin Holiday, Torrey Craig and Jeremy Lamb each also benefit from bumps up in the rotation. 

Pascal Siakam (shoulder): OUT

Without Siakam in the lineup, the Raptors will continue to look to rookie, Scottie Barnes, who is coming off an impressive double-double, with 25 points and 13 rebounds in a win on Friday night. Precious Achiuwa and Chris Boucher also will continue to see extra minutes and touches. 

Cade Cunningham (ankle): OUT

With Cunningham out, the Pistons went with Frank Jackson as their starting shooting guard in their season opener. Jackson finished with seven points and two rebounds, in 28 minutes. Additional minutes will also fall in the hands of Cory Joseph and Josh Jackson coming off the bench. 

Coby White (shoulder): OUT

The Bulls have been looking to Alex Caruso as their back-up point guard and sixth man over their first two games, and Caruso has done a respectable job, averaging 6.0 points, 3.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 2.0 steals and 1.0 blocks, so far. Javonte Green has also seen a few extra minutes come his way. 

Zion Williamson (foot): OUT, Josh Hart (quad): Questionable 

Herbert Jones drew the start at power forward for the Pelicans on Friday night and finished with six points, three assists, a steal and a block, in 29 minutes. While Naji Marshall, Jaxson Hayes and Trey Murphy will each share in the extra minutes. If Hart remains sidelined as well, then guys like Garrett Temple and Tomas Satoransky can also see some extra floor time. 

Donte DiVincenzo (ankle), Brook Lopez (back), Bobby Portis (hamstring): OUT

Jordan Nwora will continue to see extra minutes with Portis out of the lineup, but with Lopez out as well, it opens up more minutes for guys Thanasis Antetokounmpo and Sandro Mamukelashvili, who both contributed well in the Bucks' blowout win over the Heat on Thursday. It's unclear how much we should read into that game, however, as it was essentially over by the end of the first quarter.

Dillon Brooks (hand, thigh): OUT

As Brooks remains sidelined, Desmond Bane and De'Anthony Melton will continue to benefit from the extra playing time, as they both topped 20 points in the Grizzlies' most recent contest. Kyle Anderson and Tyus Jones also picked up some extra touches due to the shorthanded back court.  

Serge Ibaka (back), Nicolas Batum (personal): Questionable; Kawhi Leonard (knee): OUT

With Kawhi Leonard out, Paul George remains the clear first option on offense and best defender for the Clippers, meaning he should see some extra fantasy value. If Ibaka and Batum remain out, then it leaves room for guys like Justise Winslow, Terance Mann and Luke Kennard to each pick up some extra responsibility off the bench, while Marcus Morris and Ivica Zubac handle the starting duties. 

Elite Players

GUARDS

Damian Lillard ($10,300), Trail Blazers

Coming off a loss in his first game of the season, where Lillard missed a potential game-tying three in the final seconds, he will be coming into Saturday's contest with an enhanced sense of urgency to get his team back on track. Lillard will be going up against Chris Paul and the Suns, but it is a familiar matchup that will likely be a high-scoring affair, which should work in his favor. 

Ja Morant ($9,200), Grizzlies

Morant is coming off a monumental performance in his first game of the season, when he totaled 37 points, six rebounds, six assists and two blocks, in 33 minutes against the Cavs. Although the Clippers should have a stronger defensive presence in the back court with Eric Bledsoe, Morant is clearly looking to make an early impression this season and will come out full-steam ahead. Even if the Clippers send Paul George to cover him, Morant has a couple solid shooters by his side and a reliable big man, who can help him rack up the assists. 

Devin Booker ($8,100), Suns

Booker is coming off the second night of a back-to-back, as he totaled 22 points, five rebounds and four assists in a win over the Lakers on Friday night. Booker goes up against the Trail Blazers in what should be a high-scoring contest and he should find himself with the advantage over his primary matchup against CJ McCollum

FORWARDS/CENTERS

Giannis Antetokounmpo ($10,500), Bucks

Giannis is coming off a lesser performance by his own standards in the Bucks' recent loss to the Heat, where he finished with 15 points, 10 rebounds, three steals and two assists, in a blowout loss. However, he should find much more of an advantage on both ends of the floor, as he goes up against the Spurs on Saturday. Giannis will be looking to lead his team back into the win column and should have no trouble racking up some hefty numbers. 

Paul George ($9,800), Clippers

George will have to continue to be the man for his team while Kawhi remains sidelined, and after coming off a tough loss in Golden State on Thursday, the pressure will be on him to lead the way against the Grizzlies. The Grizzlies do not necessarily have anyone who can matchup well with George on the wing and their best shot at stopping him would likely be with Kyle Anderson, but even in that matchup, George should come out on top. 

Expected Chalk 

Karl-Anthony Towns ($10,200), Timberwolves

Towns kicked off his season with a massive performance against the Rockets, as he totaled 30 points, 10 rebounds, two assists, two steals and two blocks, in just 29 minutes. Although the Rockets are not a top-tier opponent, neither are the Pelicans, who Towns will face on Saturday. The Timberwolves should have a great chance to go 2-0 to start the season, however, it will likely take Towns to lead the way.

With Zion Williamson sidelined, the Pelicans will be limited in their options to guard Towns. His primary matchup will be against Jonas Valanciunas, who by no means can keep up with him on the outside, and who is also not the greatest interior defender. Also factoring in that the Timberwolves' other top-two scorers, Anthony Edwards and D'Angelo Russell, will not have as clear of an advantage in their matchups, Towns stands as the clear go-to option on offense. Finally, on the defensive end he should be able to rack up the boards without the big body of Williamson crowding the paint. 

Value Picks 

Jordan Nwora ($4,100), Bucks

Nwora will continue to benefit from extra playing time as Bobby Portis remains out of the lineup, but with Brook Lopez also expected to miss Saturday's contest, it makes Nwora a great value option as he could see even more action. He has logged 26 minutes in each of the Bucks' first two games and has scored in double digits in both contests, while grabbing an average of 5.5 rebounds per game, along with the odd steal, block and assists. Also note a favorable matchup against the Spurs. 

De'Anthony Melton ($3,800), Grizzlies

With Dillon Brooks out of the lineup De'Anthony Melton should again bet set up for increased minutes. Melton totaled 20 points, four rebounds and three assists in his last contest, which would make for great value if he can do it again. Melton goes up against the Clippers, which may be a slightly tougher opponent, however, they too are shorthanded, which should leave him up against a less-than optimal defense. 

Jaden McDaniels ($3,500), Timberwolves

McDaniels drew the start in the Timberwolves' season-opener and totaled four points, four rebounds, four steals, two blocks and an assist. Although his scoring and rebounding numbers were not impressive, the effort he showed in racking up the blocks and steals, along with the starting role, makes him an intriguing value option. Going up against the Pelicans, who are missing Zion Williamson, McDaniels should have room to go to work. 

Alex Caruso ($3,400), Lakers

With Coby White remaining sidelined, Caruso is the go-to sixth man and backup point guard for the Bulls. He has played close to 30 minutes in each of the Bulls' first two contests and has put up reasonable numbers in both as well. The fact that Caruso can impact the game on both ends of the floor makes him an intriguing option, as he can fill the stat sheet quickly. If the ball bounces his way then he could easily top 25 fantasy points. 

JaVale McGee ($3,100), Suns

As the Suns face the second night of a back-to-back, which may result in Deandre Ayton playing slightly fewer minutes, JaVale McGee emerges as potential value option at center. McGee goes up against the Trail Blazers, which should be a high-scoring contest with plenty of rebounds flying. McGee has played an average of 14 minutes per game in the Suns' first two contests and is averaging 7.5 points, 6.0 rebounds and 0.5 blocks. It would not be unreasonable to expect him to top those numbers on Saturday. 

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. Dan Bruno plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: duelingdan.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dan Bruno
Dan has been writing all things NBA for RotoWire since 2014. He is an active fantasy sports player, with a love for DFS. Dan is a certified Coach with the Ontario Basketball Association and is a recreation professional in his home city.
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