3 NBA FanDuel Studs to Target on Wednesday 3/16/22
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-salaried 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.
Which top players should be the focal points of your lineups today?
Kevin Durant, SF/PF, Brooklyn Nets ($11,000)
With the Brooklyn Nets back home, ignore Kevin Durant's dud last night in Orlando.
Durant's role should be phenomenal with Kyrie Irving forced out of the lineup again for Brooklyn. On Sunday against the Knicks, Durant took 37 shots and dropped in 57 points. Truly, K.D. is such a gifted scorer that he can maintain efficiency on just about any volume. At times, he just needs a nudge to hog the ball.
Without Irving on the floor since returning from injury, Durant has a tremendous 39.4% usage rate that he's turned into 1.48 FanDuel points per minute. It's worth nothing a bulk of that came in a get-up-to-speed game against Miami in his very first contest back from injury.
LeBron James is questionable at this same salary mark, and he's in a fantastic spot, as well. Luckily, Durant's floor is so high with such a supreme role that there's really no risk to loading up on K.D. in tournaments and then pivoting some to LeBron should he become available.
Luka Doncic, PG/SG, Dallas Mavericks ($10,600)
Even though the 222.0-point total in Brooklyn isn't stellar, the roles for the game's two stars make them stand out.
Opposite Durant is Luka Doncic. The Mavericks make their annual trip to Bed-Stuy on Wednesday, and Doncic has carried the role that won him "Player of the Month" in February with him into March. He's maintained a 36.2% usage rate that he's into an equally-impressive 1.53 FanDuel points per minute.
The Mavs undoubtedly run through Luka, and if this 1.5-point spread holds, he'll have the ball for a large chunk of his expected full-time workload. The Nets aren't an outlier matchup, either. They allow the 10th-most FanDuel points per game to opposing point guards (48.0).
No position is short on options with 12 games on the docket for Wednesday. Trae Young is in a great spot against Charlotte, and Dejounte Murray stuffs the stat sheet in any matchup. Still, Doncic and Durant should correlate well together with the two best individual roles on the entire slate.
Karl-Anthony Towns, C, Minnesota Timberwolves ($10,200)
Dropping 60 points is the hot new thing in the NBA, I guess.
Karl-Anthony Towns did so on Monday against the Spurs. He demolished San Antonio for 60 points and 17 boards in one of the best FanDuel-point performances of 2021-22.
Unfortunately, that's created a couple of slight negatives for him on Wednesday. He'll likely be more popular, and this salary is quite a bit higher than on Monday. However, an overwhelming positive -- a slate-high 241.0-point total in Minnesota -- crushes the impact of those.
The Lakers don't play with a center these days. They've been starting LeBron in that spot while Dwight Howard was away from the team, and Howard hasn't seen an extended run even when he starts. As a result, they've ceded some monstrous stat lines to fives lately. Deandre Ayton posted 23 points and 16 boards in a part-time workload on Sunday, and Kristaps Porzingis torched them last Friday for 14 and 14 off Washington's bench.
As a result, Towns is a sublime option in the day's best environment. Nikola Jokic and Joel Embiid are certainly lurking with significant upside themselves, but "KAT" still shouldn't be overwhelmingly popular with 12 games and just one center spot on FanDuel.