3 NBA FanDuel Studs to Target on 9/4/20
Basketball is the most consistent sport for daily fantasy purposes.
A top slugger in baseball will have his fair share of 0-for-4 days, and an elite fantasy football player is at risk of having games where his team's offense as a whole is shut down. A high-priced NBA stud is generally going to get his, though. With so many possessions in a game providing opportunities to produce, top fantasy basketball options will be posting high scores just about every night.
While this consistency puts us in a good position to identify top plays, it also means you can't afford to miss when you're paying up for someone. Even with strong value plays in your lineup, paying up and getting a dud is likely going to leave your lineup drawing pretty close to dead.
Let's get right into it and look at which top players should be the focal points of your lineups today.
Anthony Davis, PF, Los Angeles Lakers ($11,200)
The Houston Rockets have gone all-in on "small ball", meaning they do not have a traditional big man on the roster. P.J. Tucker is starting as their "center", even though he is more of a traditional wing in the modern NBA. That strategy provides plenty of space and speed on offense, but rebounding is an issue, as the Rockets have given up the most rebounds per game of any team remaining in the postseason (49.9).
Enter Anthony Davis. The ultra-skilled big man for the Los Angeles Lakers has already feasted on this matchup this year, because unlike most prototypical big men, Davis, who was a finalist for defensive player of the year, is more than athletic to stay on the floor against the Rockets' wings. Davis averaged a massive 24.5 points and 12.5 rebounds against the Rockets this season -- and those totals include a blowout loss in the bubble. Unlike in that loss, LeBron James will play, and as 6.5-point favorites, Davis should see his full minutes load against Houston with potential for monster numbers.
Russell Westbrook, PG, Houston Rockets ($8,500)
As the Rockets advance to the next round, the co-star to James Harden appears to be back in full force. Russell Westbrook ostensibly cleared his minutes limit in Game 7, as he posted a normal starter minute load with 34 of them in Houston's 104-102 win to advance past the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Westbrook has struggled from a production standpoint since coming back, averaging just 0.98 FanDuel points per game, which is down from his 1.38 mark from the regular season. Perhaps both getting back into a rhythm of his full minutes will help, but so too will this series matchup with the Lakers. Westbrook averaged 56.7 FanDuel points per game this year against Los Angeles, which would detonate value at this reduced price tag.
Khris Middleton, SG, Milwaukee Bucks ($7,500)
The Miami Heat continue to funnel away action from Giannis Antetokounmpo, and the other Milwaukee Bucks players continue to benefit from a fantasy perspective as a result. None may benefit, however, as much as the Bucks' other All-Star Khris Middleton. In this series, Middleton is tied for the Bucks' lead at 29.7% usage, and it is worth noting that Middleton played just 12 first-half minutes in Game 2 because of foul trouble -- which will reduce a player's overall usage for that period of time.
Middleton continues to destroy Miami's perimeter defense as a result of their "wall" to stop Giannis defensively. Middleton averaged 23.3 points against Miami in the regular season, and has averaged 25.5 points in the two games so far, despite poor shooting for him in this series at 45.5%. Middleton is projected by numberFire to surpass value again at this price with 38.9 FanDuel points on Friday.
Austin Swaim is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Austin Swaim also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username ASwaim3. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.