March Madness: Top DraftKings Plays for Friday's Sweet 16 Games
Last night was a great start to this year's Sweet 16 -- well, besides the 39-point beatdown West Virginia suffered at the hands of Kentucky.
Either way, Notre Dame, Wisconsin, and Arizona will be joining Kentucky in the Elite 8. Each of these three teams (not so much Kentucky) got big performances from standout players -- for Arizona, it was T.J. McConnell and Kaleb Tarczewski; for Wisconsin, Sam Dekker; and for Notre Dame, Pat Connaughton and Demetrius Jackson.
For you fellow DFS players, hopefully you had some exposure to a couple of the above guys. If not, maybe you can get back up on that metaphorical horse tonight and make some money.
Good luck, and enjoy the madness!
Denzel Valentine, Michigan State - G ($8,600)
Valentine didn't fare too well in his last game against the Virginia Cavaliers -- but hey, not many players do. Valentine was in foul trouble most of the game and played just 21 minutes, tallying just 15.5 fantasy points. Prior to that, Valentine was on fire. He produced two games with at least 33.5 fantasy points with 16 points in each game.
Tonight, I expect the latter type of performance rather than the former. The Sooners rank 59th among all NCAA tournament teams, giving up an average of 23.23 fantasy points per contest to small forwards in their last 10 games prior to the tournament. Look for Valentine to fill up the stat sheet.
Trevor Lacey, North Carolina State- G ($7,800)
Trevor Lacey has been on fire as of late. The NC State two-guard is coming off of a 31.5 point fantasy performance in an upset win against Villanova in the second round. In fact, Lacey has had 30 fantasy points in three of his last five games.
He also has a favorable matchup against the Louisville Cardinals. Coming into the tournament, the Cardinals ranked 55th of 64 teams against opposing shooting guards, giving up more than 21 fantasy points per game and four games of at least 26.5 fantasy points in the last 10 games of the regular season. Lacey will be key if NC State takes down the Cardinals.
Jordan Loveridge, Utah - F ($5,400)
Loveridge is one of three lower-priced players with matchups to target on Friday night. Now, he might not be setting the world on fire lately, with just over 15 fantasy points per game in this last three games, but Loveridge has the ability to go off.
In a game against Stanford on March 12th, Loveridge put up 37 fantasy points. He could have the same kind of game against an uptempo Duke team. Against opposing power forwards, the Dukies ranked 54th of the 64 teams entering the tournament. Target Loveridge as he needs just 21.6 points to reach value.
Jordan Woodard, Oklahoma - G ($5,300)
Denzel Valentine isn't the only player to target in tonight's matchup between the Sooners and Spartans. Jordan Woodard, the Sooner point man is looking at a more than favorable matchup against Travis Trice and Michigan State. The Spartans ranked among the bottom three teams in the tournament when it comes to defending point guards.
Trice may be a game changer offensively, but he's not as good on the defensive end. Michigan State surrendered 25.75 fantasy points per game to point guards in their last 10 games entering the tournament. Now, you might say their defense has improved, but Woodard needs just 21.2 fantasy points to reach value.
Gary Bell, Jr., Gonzaga - G ($4,800)
There might be several players to target in tonight's Gonzaga-UCLA matchup, but Gary Bell is a great player to fit into your lineup at a light price tag. Bell primarily plays shooting guard for the Zags and averages just 15.2 fantasy points per game. But he's a capable wing contributor.
Bell, in his last three games, is averaging over 20 fantasy points per contest while totaling 38 real points in those games. It doesn't hurt that Bell has the single most favorable matchup on the board tonight. The Bruins ranked dead last against shooting guards coming into the tournament -- they were giving up 27.55 fantasy points per game. Isaac Hamilton isn't a strong defender, so Bell could be in for a very price-effective game.