DraftKings NBA: Saturday Cheat Sheet

DraftKings NBA: Saturday Cheat Sheet

This article is part of our DraftKings NBA series.

After a couple of massive slates Wednesday and Friday, we're treated to a bit of a breather this evening with seven contests. That's considered an ideal number of games by many, as it doesn't overwhelm with choices but certainly offers plenty of opportunity for differentiation. The injury report is also refreshingly light, so the player pool should be robust. 

Slate Overview

Phoenix Suns (-2) at Brooklyn Nets (O/U: 223.5 points) 

New York Knicks at Atlanta Hawks (-5.5) (O/U: 217.5 points) 

Miami Heat (-1.5) at Chicago Bulls (O/U: 211.5 points) 

Charlotte Hornets (-6) at Houston Rockets (O/U: 223.5 points) 

Orlando Magic at Cleveland Cavaliers (-9) (O/U: 204.5 points) 

Washington Wizards at Dallas Mavericks (-7) (O/U: 211.0 points) 

New Orleans Pelicans at Utah Jazz (-12.5) (O/U: 215.5 points) 

There seems to be a decent balance between matchups projected on the higher-scoring side and more defensive battles, as well as potentially competitive contests and more lopsided affairs. There are also multiple teams playing on the second of back-to-back sets and/or third in four nights. The big rest advantage belonging to the Mavericks as they've been off for three days, while the Wizards are one of the aforementioned teams within a very dense schedule. 

The marquee matchup of the night - and one that could indeed be the most appealing for DFS purposes - is the Suns-Nets showdown. Phoenix will be looking for its 15th straight win, and Brooklyn will naturally be out to snap that streak on its home floor. 

Injury Situations to Monitor  

NOTE: Injury reporting is especially fluid in the NBA, where the status of multiple players can change during the course of a day. Therefore, although the following is a foundation for the latest injury report as of the time the article is written, check back throughout the course of the day with RotoWire for the latest news regarding the status of all players on that night's slate. 

Cole Anthony, ORL (ankle)/ Status: QUESTIONABLE 

If Anthony were to sit again, R.J. Hampton and Gary Harris could be the primary beneficiaries in terms of expanded opportunity. 

Evan Mobley, CLE (elbow)/ Status: PROBABLE 

Mobley has made a quicker-than-expected recovery from his elbow issue and should therefore be in the starting lineup after only missing four games. His return will likely send Dean Wade back to the bench. 

Other notable injuries: 

Zion Williamson, NOP (foot)/ Status: OUT 

Kyrie Irving, BKN (personal)/ Status: OUT 

Jalen Brunson, DAL (foot)/ Status: PROBABLE 

Jalen Green, HOU (hamstring)/ Status: OUT 

Joe Harris, BKN (ankle)/ Status: OUT 

Bruce Brown, BKN (ankle)/ Status: PROBABLE 

Mason Plumlee, CHA (calf)/ Status: QUESTIONABLE 

Derrick Rose, NYK (ankle)/ Status: QUESTIONABLE 

Frank Kaminsky, PHO (knee)/ Status: OUT 

Taj Gibson, NYK (groin)/ Status: QUESTIONABLE 

Elite Players

We have five players with five-figure salaries on Saturday's slate – Luka Doncic ($11,500), James Harden ($11,400), Kevin Durant ($10,800), LaMelo Ball ($10,400) and Julius Randle ($10,200). 

Doncic left no doubt as to the fitness of his ankle and knee when he returned Tuesday against the Clippers and logged a whopping 41 minutes in the overtime contest. The star guard racked up 55.8 DK point and has now enjoyed three days of rest. 

Harden has posted four consecutive double-doubles and 51.3 to 70.5 DK points in three of his last four, and should be in for another heavy workload in what is likely to be a wire-to-wire battle against the Suns. 

The same naturally applies to Durant, who's bounced back from a couple of subpar games to post 53.5 and 40.5 DK points in his last pair of outings. 

Ball is playing on his third contest in four nights and his salary has risen significantly compared to earlier this season. He's also posted a modest – relative to his salary - 34.0 and 38.5 DK points in the last two, although he does face a very appealing matchup in the Rockets. 

Randle produced just 26.5 DK points his last time out in a tough battle against the Suns, but he's hovered between 43.5 and 50.5 DK points the previous three games and is averaging 43.0 on the year. 

Expected Chalk

In addition to the players just mentioned in the previous section, other likely chalk plays include: 

Jimmy Butler, MIA ($9,700) 

Butler will be back in familiar surroundings in Chicago and is averaging 43.5 DK points for the season. With the spread for the Heat-Bulls contest one of the narrowest of the night, he should find himself on plenty of rosters. 

Trae Young, ATL ($9,600) 

Young has dropped between 47.5 to 61.8 DK points in his last three contests, which should keep him in plenty of lineups.

Zach LaVine, CHI ($9,200) 

Much like Butler, LaVine should be heavily rostered based on the expectations surrounding the Heat-Bulls along with him averaging 39.5 DK points overall. 

Bradley Beal, WAS ($9,100) 

Beal is posting 40.1 DK points per contest and has eclipsed 40 in three of the last five alone, which should keep him popular today. 

DeMar DeRozan, CHI ($9,000) 

DeRozan has been a focal point in the Bulls' attack and has even started to contribute from three-point range by shooting 36.5 percent from distance. His floor is safe and the fact he's averaging 40.7 DK points this season should lead to him on many lineups. 

Key Values 

Montrezl Harrell, WAS at DAL ($6,300) 

Harrell is enjoying a resurgent season in Washington averaging 33.7 DK points and sporting career highs in rebounds (8.8) and assists (2.2). He draws a favorable matchup against the Mavs, who have allowed the second-highest offensive efficiency rating to centers (36.4 percent) along with the seventh-highest offensive efficiency in the paint (58.4 percent). Harrell records just under 71.0 percent of his points in the paint, and should also enjoy a busy night on the defensive glass when factoring in the Wizards give up an NBA-low 42.0 percent shooting on the road. 

Kevin Love, CLE vs. ORL ($5,100) 

Love should continue to come off the bench behind Jarrett Allen despite Evan Mobley's projected return to the lineup, while the veteran will be in a decent position to extend a stretch that's seen him score between 24.8 to 31.0 DK points in nine of his last 10 matchups. The Magic are allowing the eighth-highest offensive efficiency to centers (34.0 percent) and the highest to bench players (50.1 percent), which should allow Love plenty of opportunities to continue producing at a rate belonging to a much higher salary. 

Kelly Oubre, CHA at HOU ($4,600) 

Oubre's production has undeniably seen some fluctuations, but he enters today on an upward trajectory after posting 29.5 and 33.8 DK points in his last two games. The veteran wing continues to enjoy a secure role off the bench and has already provided over 5x return on his current salary nine times this campaign. The Rockets also make for favorable targets having allowing the second-highest offensive efficiency to bench players (49.5 percent) and also in the bottom-10 in that category against wings. 

ALSO CONSIDER: Willy Hernangomez, NOP at UTA ($4,500)

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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