FanDuel Daily Fantasy Basketball Helper: Monday 3/1/21

Fresh off a couple of monster performances, PJ Washington is once again in play tonight. Who else should we target on Monday's seven-game slate?

The NBA scene changes on a week-to-week, day-to-day, and -- depending on injury news -- even a minute-to-minute basis, making every slate a unique one that requires an ever-changing approach.

With so much changing so quickly, we're here with plenty of tools to help you out. We have daily projections, a matchup heat map, a lineup optimizer, and a bunch of other great resources to help give you an edge.

Daily fantasy NBA is very reliant on opportunity, so you'll need to make sure that you're up-to-date with key injuries and COVID-19 situations. Our projections update up until tip-off to reflect current news and we also have player news updates.

We'll also be coming at you with this primer every day, breaking down a few of the day's top plays at each position.

Please note: When I'm referencing a player's value figure, it is the number of fantasy points scored for every $1,000 in salary. Typically, a value figure of 5.0 (meaning, 5.0 FanDuel points for every $1,000 in salary) is the minimum baseline we'll be targeting.

Let's take a look at who you should target on tonight's seven-game slate, which locks at 7:00 PM Eastern.

Slate Overview

This table is via Brandon Gdula's matchup sheet -- it shows the over/under for each game, as well as each team's spread and implied total. The table also includes each squad's offensive rating, adjusted for opponent, as well as opponent-adjusted defensive rating for the opposing team, including the respective league-wide ranks for each of those ratings.

Teams are sorted by their implied total.

Team Opp Over/
Spread Implied
Rank Opp Adj.
UTAH NO 235.0 -7.0 121.0 124.4 3 122.2 29
BKN SA 235.0 -5.5 120.25 126.5 1 110.5 14
POR CHA 234.0 -6.5 120.25 118.5 7 115.2 24
DEN CHI 226.0 -5.0 115.50 121.5 5 113.4 17
DAL ORL 223.0 -7.0 115.0 115.4 9 114.4 20
SA BKN 235.0 5.5 114.75 110.4 18 116.2 26
PHI IND 224.0 -5.0 114.50 112.1 14 108.9 8
NO UTAH 235.0 7.0 114.0 121.1 6 102.6 2
CHA POR 234.0 6.5 113.75 111.8 16 121.8 28
CHI DEN 226.0 5.0 110.50 112.1 15 114.0 19
HOU CLE 217.5 -2.5 110.0 98.2 30 115.7 25
IND PHI 224.0 5.0 109.50 110.8 17 106.0 5
ORL DAL 223.0 7.0 108.0 99.4 28 114.5 21
CLE HOU 217.5 2.5 107.50 99.5 27 109.8 12

Point Guard


Luka Doncic ($10,600): As I outlined in my studs to target column, Luka is a worthwhile target on tonight's slate. Given that he's only averaged 44.3 FanDuel points over his last four contests, it's understandable that his salary has dropped to its lowest mark of the season -- but that means we should be all over it. The Dallas Mavericks are facing the Orlando Magic, who rank 28th against points guards, according to numberFire's DvP tool. Doncic has had seven matchups against bottom-five positional defenses this season, and he's posted an insane average of 68.7 FanDuel points in those seven contests. Our model projects Doncic to be the highest-scoring player on tonight's slate.

Other Studs to Consider (in order of preference):
Dejounte Murray ($8,400): Has had 47.7-plus FanDuel points in four of last six. Spurs will still be without a number of players for tonight's matchup, which has a 235.0 over/under.
LaMelo Ball ($7,900): Charlotte could be without three starters. LaMelo has had at least 39.4 in 8 of his last 11, including 41.4-plus in 6 of those outings.
Damian Lillard ($10,100): Hornets rank 24th against point guards. Dame has posted 47.9 or more in six of his last seven.
Kyrie Irving ($9,000): Spurs rank dead last against point guards and have a thin roster. Irving has had at least 43.3 fantasy points in 7 of his last 10.

Value Play

Sterling Brown ($3,900): John Wall has yet to play on both legs of a back-to-back this season and seeing as though he played last night, chances are that he'll be inactive tonight. In the last five games Wall has missed, Brown has posted 13.2, 25.6, 25.9, 32.7, and 40.9 FanDuel points. Tonight, he'll square off against a Cleveland Cavaliers team that's allowed the seventh-most fantasy points to opposing point guards over their last 15 games.

Other Mid-Range and Value Options:

T.J. McConnell ($6,100): If Malcolm Brogdon (knee) doesn't suit up, McConnell becomes the best value play at the position. He dropped 45.2 FanDuel points in 46.3 minutes on Saturday with Brogdon out of the lineup.
Mike Conley ($6,200): Conley has averaged 33.8 over his last three and faces a Pelicans that comes in 25th against the position.
Patty Mills ($3,900): Mills is numberFire's top-projected value on tonight's slate. However, it's worth mentioning that he's failed to reach 20 fantasy points in any of his last 10.

Shooting Guard


James Harden ($10,700): Harden, like Doncic, gets a small drop in salary due to a couple of recent duds. We should look to take advantage here as well. Of all the shooting guards with a salary higher than $5,300, Harden is the only one projected to accrue a value figure better than 4.9. numberFire's models also have him scoring 14.7 more fantasy points than the third-highest projected player at the position. As I mentioned in the studs piece, the matchup with the San Antonio Spurs is mediocre for two-guards -- they've ceded the 15th-most fantasy points to the position over their last 15 games. However, with Harden being the Brooklyn Nets' primary ball-handler, he gets a mouth-watering draw against a team that ranks dead last against point guards this season.

Other Studs to Consider:
DeMar DeRozan ($8,000): DeRozan dropped 54.7 fantasy points on Saturday in his first game in more than two weeks. He could have another huge performance for the shorthanded Spurs tonight.
Donovan Mitchell ($8,300): Has had 41.8-plus in five of last six. Ceiling is lower with Conley in the lineup and Pels have been fifth-best against the position over their last 15.
Victor Oladipo ($7,600): The Cavs rank 22nd against shooting guards, and 'Dipo should see a bump in usage with Wall likely out.

Value Play

Seth Curry ($4,400): Curry has been very hit-or-miss lately -- he's posted 27.6, 32.6, and 35.9 FanDuel points in three of his last five, but he managed just 10.8 and 11.4 in the other two. However, given his low salary, he is certainly worth the risk in tournaments, especially if either Joel Embiid or Tobias Harris were to miss tonight's contest versus the Indiana Pacers. Curry is numberFire's top-projected value at the position.

Other Mid-Range and Value Options:
Collin Sexton ($7,100): Houston ranks second-worst against shooting guards in their last 15. Sexton has topped 40 fantasy points in three of his last eight.
Terrence Ross ($5,300): Has dudded in his last two, but had averaged 36.6 fantasy points in the eight games prior. Dallas has ceded seventh-most FanDuel points to shooting guards over their last 15 contests. Dwayne Bacon ($3,700) is also worth considering.
Tim Hardaway Jr. ($4,500): Orlando ranks 28th against the position this season and dead last in their last 15 games. THJ is averaging 24.9 FanDuel points in his last four.
Eric Gordon ($5,300): Our model's third-best projected value at the position. Should see a bump in volume with Wall out.

Small Forward

Mid-Range and Value Options

Derrick Jones Jr. ($5,300): Unless Gordon Hayward suits up tonight, small forward will be thinner than LeBron James' hairline. DJJ is a player who has proven to be trustworthy in recent weeks, as he has averaged 29.6 FanDuel points over his last six games, including at least 27.2 in four of his last five. Meanwhile, the Hornets rank 29th against small forwards this season.

Malik Monk ($4,900): If Hayward is out, Monk becomes a core play at the position. Monk has amassed at least 27.2 FanDuel points in five of his last six games, and he'll face a Portland team that's been ninth-most-generous to the position over their last seven games.

Other Small Forwards to Consider:
Danuel House Jr. ($4,500): Our model's top-projected value at the position. Dropped a dud last night but had managed at least 28.2 in four of his previous eight. David Nwaba ($4,900) is also worthy of consideration.
Bojan Bogdanovic ($4,800): New Orleans is fifth-worst against small forwards this season. Bojan has had 23.9-plus 17 times this season.
Garrett Temple ($4,200): Hasn't reached 20 in any of his last three but is still seeing big minutes. Denver is 27th against the position this season.
Brandon Ingram ($7,800): Has topped 40 FanDuel points in 9 of his last 14. Managed just 29.2 and 31.6 in other two matchups against Utah.

Power Foward


Zion Williamson ($8,900): The matchup against the Jazz is brutal, but Zion's recent form keeps him in play. The 20-year-old has eclipsed 45 FanDuel points in eight of his last nine games, and he only needs 44.5 for 5X tonight (or 5.0 fantasy points for every $1,000 in salary). In recent weeks, Utah has surrendered 45.7 FanDuel points to Bam Adebayo, 33.6 to PJ Washington, 57.0 to Tobias Harris, and 65.0 to Giannis Antetokounmpo -- all of those performances were above their respective season averages.

Other Studs to Consider:
Domantas Sabonis ($9,600): With Brogdon and Jeremy Lamb questionable, Sabonis could see higher-than-usual volume. He has topped 50 FanDuel points in four of his last seven.
Kristaps Porzingis ($7,800): Orlando ranks 20th against power forwards over their last 15 games. Porzingis has exceeded 40 fantasy points in five of his last nine efforts.
Tobias Harris ($7,100): Harris is questionable but gets a delicious draw if he's active. Pacers rank second-worst against the position over their last 15 games.


PJ Washington ($6,200): As long as Cody Zeller remains out (he's doubtful), Washington is pretty close to a lock at his salary. In 18 games that Zeller has missed this season, Washington has surpassed 32 FanDuel points 10 times, including outputs of 43.0 and 66.8 in his last two. Portland ranks 12th-worst against power forwards throughout their last 15 contests.

Other Mid-Range and Value Options:
Robert Covington ($5,800): Charlotte has given up the second-most fantasy points to the position this season. Covington has exceeded 31 FanDuel points in 6 of his last 11.
Patrick Williams ($4,900): Denver has allowed the sixth-most fantasy points to power forwards over their last 15. Williams has had 25.5-plus in 7 of his last 12.
Trey Lyles ($4,000): Lyles doesn't possess much upside, but he is our model's top-projected value at the position.



Jarrett Allen ($7,900): Center is absolutely loaded tonight, but Allen seems to possess the best balance of upside and value in this one. He'll face a Houston interior that he dropped 61.6 FanDuel points on last week -- one of his four games with at least 43 fantasy points in his last five contests.

Other Studs to Consider:
Nikola Jokic ($11,000): Has come down to earth recently but faces a Bulls frontcourt that's second-worst against the position over their last 15 games.
Joel Embiid ($10,800): Has had outings of 60.7, 72.6, and 93.9 FanDuel points in three of his last six. Is officially questionable for tonight.
Nikola Vucevic ($9,700): Dallas is 26th against the position over their last 15 outings. Vuce has topped 54 in 6 of his last 12.

Value Play

Enes Kanter ($6,300): Not only is Kanter numberFire's best-projected value at center, but he's also our model's second-best point-per-dollar play on the entire slate. He'll have a bout with a Hornets team that isn't exactly known for their interior defense. Kanter has recorded at least 31.7 FanDuel points in 11 of his last 17 games, including at 34.9-plus in three of his last four.

Other Mid-Range and Value Options:
Jakob Poeltl ($6,000): Speaking of bad interior defense, Poeltl gets a matchup against Brooklyn. He has exceeded 32 fantasy points in five of his last eight.
Justin Patton ($3,500): Minimum salary and good matchup. Has had 20.0 and 20.2 FanDuel points in two of his last four.