NBA Daily Fantasy Helper: Tuesday 4/21/15
If you’ve never played daily fantasy basketball before, it’s time to start. Unlike traditional leagues, you’re able to select the players you want on that specific day only, giving you a different squad to root for each and every NBA night.
And while there are many platforms to play daily fantasy basketball on, one of our favorites is from our partners over at DraftKings.com. Never played over there before? It’s time for that to change. Sign up now and use our optimal lineups here at numberFire.com to crush the competition. You won’t regret it.
As for today's lineups -- those can be found here. The information below is to help you understand why particular players are being picked, because we don't want you going into the night completely blind. We want to help you. Keep in mind, however, that things often change up until tip-off, so make sure you're refreshing the optimal lineups as close to the start of games as possible.
To get a general idea of who we're picking in tonight's slate, check out the video below, courtesy of Periscope. And be sure to follow us on there, @numberFire!
Note: Players mentioned here may not be part of some of our daily lineups because of particular sites' cost analysis. Always look at our optimized lineups to see what our algorithms say.
The Best of the Best
James Harden - Harden had an outstanding regular season, finishing the season second in our player power rankings with a 19.1 nERD and landing on the short list for the MVP award. Although he didn't quite live up to his price in Houston's opening game of the playoffs, the Rockets' star got off to a solid start, scoring 24 points with 11 assists, 2 rebounds and a steal in 38 minutes in Game 1 against the Mavericks. The Beard should continue to see a massive workload throughout the series against Dallas -- he averaged 36.8 minutes per game with a massive 31.3% usage rate during the regular season -- and will remain an elite play all series long in what is expected to be an extremely fast-paced, high-scoring series. Harden is our number one overall projected player on the board for tonight's three game slate.
Kyrie Irving - Although LeBron James will be by far the best player on the floor tonight -- and probably in the world -- I'm not convinced that he is the best fantasy option on the Cavaliers. The Cavaliers spent the majority of Game 1 against the Celtics trying to get Irving and Kevin Love involved in the offense in their first career playoff games, and that strategy paid dividends. I'll get to Love below, but Irving poured in 30 points on 11 for 21 shooting in 40 minutes of action in the Cavs' first playoff game and should be one of the focal points of Cleveland's offensive attack again tonight against a Celtics squad who allowed the ninth most fantasy points to opposing point guards this season. The Cavaliers are far more talented than the Celtics and will not need to lean on their all-world forward as heavily as they will against the Bulls or Hawks later in the playoffs. That means they will likely continue to try to get Irving and Love comfortable with the playoff atmosphere in what should be a high-scoring game against a less-than-stellar Celtics' defense.
Top Mid-Range Values
Kevin Love - As I just mentioned, Love was a huge part of Cleveland's game plan in Game 1 against Boston. With the Celtics completely out-matched by the Cavaliers, the Cavs will want to keep feeding their stars with minimal playoff experience in an attempt to get them touches early in the playoffs to better prepare them for tougher series to come. Love scored 19 points to go along with 12 rebounds, 4 assists and a steal in his first ever playoff appearance and should have another solid game tonight against a Boston team who has allowed the tenth most fantasy points per game to opposing power forwards this season. Although there is some blowout potential with Cleveland as 11 point favorites, the Cavaliers' big man should have little trouble reaching value at his diminished price of just $7,100 on FanDuel and $7,400 on DraftKings.
Tyson Chandler - Much like his teammate Dirk Nowitzki, Chandler was often tough to count on during the regular season due to his inconsistent minutes on a nightly basis. However, that can be thrown out the window now that it is the playoffs. The Mavericks' center played 31 minutes in Game 1 against the Rockets and absolutely dominated the paint, scoring 11 points on 5 of 8 to go along with a whopping 18 rebounds, 2 steals and a block. Dwight Howard is not nearly the imposing rim protector that he once was and Chandler should continue to dominate the glass all series long. Look for the former defensive player of the year to post another impressive double-double tonight in what is expected to be an extremely high-scoring affair with a massive over/under of 215.
Paul Pierce - Just like the aforementioned Chandler, Pierce was nearly impossible to trust during the regular season but is now one of the strongest plays on the board as long as the Wizards stay alive. The Wizards' veteran forward -- who averaged just 26.2 minutes per game during the regular season -- is coming off of a spectacular Game 1 performance in which he scored 20 points with 4 boards, a steal and a block in 36 minutes of action. Pierce's playoff experience is invaluable to this young Washington squad and they will continue to call on him to make big plays as the playoffs roll on, especially in crunch time. Expect Pierce to see minutes in the mid-30s for the second consecutive night and for him to reach value easily. He makes an excellent play on DraftKings at $5,200, but he is an absolute steal on FanDuel at just $4,400.
Lou Williams - While he does not start for the Raptors, Williams is one of the most productive bench players in the league, as proven by the fact that he was recently named the NBA sixth man of the year. Although he did not shoot particularly well in Game 1 -- nobody on the Wizards or Raptors did -- Williams still reached 4.5-times value on both FanDuel and DraftKings and has an excellent chance to do so again tonight. Sweet Lou should see another 30-plus minute workload and could provide the scoring boost the Raptors so desperately need if they want to stay in this series. Williams makes a strong value play in all formats tonight.