NBA

NBA Finals Game 1 Warriors vs. Celtics Showdown Preview

The NBA Finals are finally here which means we have some massive Showdown contests to look forward to! This is one of my favorite periods given the game theory nature of Showdown and want to do everything I can to get you guys the information you need to separate yourself from the pack and be unique while also having a shot at 1st place. There are four key things I look for in a player to have the highest probability of being optimal!
1. Price
2. Opponent DvP
3. Recent Minutes/Rotation Time
4. Usage Rate
These four statistics paired together are the best suitors to find a gem. Almost everyone I mention below hits on atleast 2 of these if not all of them! Hopefully this will help you be more successful while building lineups and give you a higher chance of winning the big bucks!
I would also like to note that I write these articles early in the day. It is always beneficial to check @Underdog__NBA for lineup changes. Those changes could have a direct effect on some of my "favorite plays" in the sense that if a cheap guy that was one of my favorites doesn't start, then they might no longer be a favorite play or even a play at all. Check out my Twitter @HeatingUpDFS for any updates on favorite play changes!
If you enjoy all of the content, there are multiple ways to show support! We have a Twitter and Discord Channel that you can join for up to the hour line up discussion and slate overviews! Also be sure to subscribe to our YouTube for our video breakdowns! Click the links below to join/follow!
For player projections throughout the rest of the playoffs, be sure to check out our FREE Projection Sheet! Just click the Premium button below.

Series Overview

The Celtics and Warriors split the season series 1-1 with Boston blowing them out in mid March and the Warriors winning a closer contest 111-107 right around Christmas time. You would have to imagine that the Celtics are running on near empty after back to back 7 game series with multiple guys banged up. The Warriors on the other hand have settled their scores quite easily with not a single series going past 6 games in their playoff run. It doesn't really matter how you look at it here, I think all we want is a good series and these teams have the stars to provide us with that. Both teams seem to be relying heavily on the 3 ball which makes me think that is the decider. Whoever can get hot at the right time will likely win this series. I for one might be a minority in saying this but the fact that most have written off Boston and are already giving the Warriors the win is quite crazy to me. The Celtics are young and having a few days to rest up might be all they need. I think they have had a much tougher path to these finals and should be mentally locked in as the underdogs ready to go. If I had to put my money down right now I would take the Celtics in 6 to win the Finals at the Garden. I just think they match up incredibly well to slow down the Warriors despite the number of massive runs they allowed Miami to go on in the last series. Looking at the Warriors though I totally see the reasoning to have them as favorites. They probably have more guys to rotate in and give players some relief which likely means they are much fresher the deeper into the series this goes. They have some absolute fire power shooting the ball and play good enough defense to back it up. I am just firmly in the boat that defense wins championships and that is exactly what the Celtics bring to the table. As for tonight, I think it is a toss up as to who wins making me think that a balanced build is more than likely the best way to go.

Captain Picks

For Showdown slates it is always crucial that you get the CPTN correct or you won't stand a chance at the top prize. Usually the top 0.1-1% of the highest scoring lineups in a SD setting feature the same CPTN with varying UTIL spot choices to round out the lineup. Given the rotations should remain fairly tight, there might only be two roster constructions you can choose tonight. The 1st is a stars and scrubs approach. That is where you take a top 3 option at CPTN, follow it up with 3 more of the top 5 priced options, and round it out with two guys that are extremely cheap in hopes that the stars get 80%+ of the usage and you only need 3-10 DK points from the cheap guys to get you to the top. The 2nd option, which will likely be my personal approach, is a balanced approach. Usually it comes with taking a mid range CPTN option, then multiple high to mid priced options at UTIL and only have to lean on one cheaper option that still has scoring viability. The way that Draftkings priced this one puts a lot of emphasis on a balance build. We don't have a $12,000 player up top that is a lock leading to the use of under $3,000 options being a must. The highest priced guy is Tatum at $10,600 and then after Steph at $10,200 you go all the way down to Brown as the only guy over $9,000. Realistically you could get all 3 of those guys tonight and have money to spare depending on if someone like Gary Payton or Bjelica play decent minutes. All in all, I think DK did a good job with pricing everyone so that there isn't a certain build that stands out thus flattening ownership in the mid range. The following guys I believe give you the best shot at either being optimal or different enough to give you some leverage towards a unique build.
Jayson Tatum ($15,900 CPTN) or Steph Curry ($15,300 CPTN)
Almost EVERYONE will go this route tonight since it is more than feasible to do so. The Warriors have enough really cheap options in the rotation that you can get one of these guys CPTN, one at UTIL and be just fine filling in the gaps to have a solid chance at optimal. I think if you are creating lineups for the new SERIES contests on Draftkings they are almost a must at CPTN just because they will 100% be the top scorers come the conclusion of this series. However, for tonight, I actually lean Tatum heavily and Steph I think is a good fade. I know most of you might think I am crazy saying fade Steph but Marcus Smart is 100% and has had Steph's number in the past. He knows how to limit him and they will stick Smart on Steph like glue just like they did with Butler last series (even though it was a horrible size matchup for Smart). If you fade Steph you can almost avoid the $3,000 and fewer range completely which has little to no upside. As for Tatum, I think he has a much easier matchup against Wiggins and with Klay guarding Jaylen that could lead to a slight usage bump for Tatum. He just checks every box tonight. Even if you want Steph as well I am not going to talk you off of that. The odds that he is outside the top 6 in scoring tonight is probably less than 1%, but I just lean Tatum CPTN over him with almost no difference in salary.
Marcus Smart ($12,300 CPTN)
The man is just a player. He shows up when it matters and puts his heart out on the floor on every single play. I guess that could lead to a bit higher injury risk which we have already seen, but I am willing to take those chances. He will get as many minutes as he can handle to defend Steph and showed in Game 7 he can get over the 40 minute mark. He accumulates stats across the board is priced up enough that some might avoid him leading to a bit of leverage. He lets you avoid the $3,000 and under range completely but also has 40+ DK point upside to get close enough to Tatum and Steph's score to push being optimal. I love him in this spot against Steph who is still not a great defender so lock in on Smart tonight. I think the big decider is that in both games against GS this season he scored 40+ DK points.
Jordan Poole ($9,600 CPTN)
The field is generally extremely underweight on bench players at CPTN and for good reason. Usually they are much more volatile and the minutes can be spotty. However, Poole is not your average bench guy. He should see close to 30 minutes regardless of the outcome and if his shot is falling they will certainly leave him out there. The price is just too low for his ceiling and in the one game he played against BOS this season he scored 45 DK points... It is extremely risky, but I don't think anyone does this tonight and that might be exactly what you need to leverage wise to be unique and push for a top 1% finish.

Utility Picks

Along with all of the CPTN options, the following players look to be a good value tonight for a number of different reasons (pricing, matchup, ownership leverage, etc.)
Jaylen Brown ($9,200)
Brown is kind of stuck in the dead range which could mean 1 of 2 things. He could come in severely underowned with the field going up to Steph and Tatum or he just doesn't have what it takes to get up to them in scoring and he kills all of the of the low ownership believers. Unfortunately I am in the boat they he doesn't get there tonight. He doesn't matchup well with Klay and in the two games against GS this season he failed to pass 40 DK points and the price difference between him and the two above him isn't enough to warrant playing him. I think he is great leverage, but I don't think you will get enough of it. That being said I actually like him more than Steph here who I think is in a much worse spot compared to Brown. Taking Brown and Tatum likely means you think Boston wins tonight and I don't think much of the field will think that way so it is really up to you. I guess a positive is he will get enough minutes to prop his floor up to around the 30 DK point range which is great. He is definitely in the boat of he is fine if you get to him but if you don't I wouldn't be too worried.
Klay Thompson ($7,800)
Man is it refreshing to see him priced accordingly again after he was in the low 9's to high 8's range last series. Similar to Brown I think he is a good leverage piece but Brown is also a good defender. Klay only played in the blowout of the regular season series but has yet to eclipse 30 DK points in any of his last 4 meetings against Brown and the Celtics. If his shot isn't falling they likely go to Poole and if he gets hot that could be the end for Thompson's optimal chances. I would rather go to some guys a bit cheaper or find a way to get to Smart or Brown above him who do a bit more in other categories to support the price tag.
Al Horford ($7,600)
I think this is a pretty easy one. No point in spending this much of Horford when he is going to get Draymond treatment for a good part of the game and have to be active on the defensive end with how much Draymond handles the ball. I just don't think he will get enough opportunities unless Robert Williams gets hurt again and they have to move him to C more. Again, he is a leverage play at best but the price is too steep for my liking.
Kevon Looney ($7,400)
Lol just fade Looney at this horrifying price tag and wait until he is $5,000 by Game 4. He won't be able to do much of anything against Robert Williams or even Horford when they go smaller.
Andrew Wiggins ($7,200)
Now this is where a lot of the mid range ownership will fall to. Wiggins played fantastic in the last series and great in the one game against BOS he played in the regular season (44 DK points). I don't think he gets enough respect for the season he has had and hopefully he will garner more after this series. He plays the most minutes of anyone of GS and does enough in the rebound department to warrant paying this price tag. My only real fear is that you can go both ways and find a guy that probably has a higher ceiling than Wiggins at much lower ownership (Draymond lower and Klay or Horford higher). In GPPs I would likely try to see if I can get up to the Klay or Horford to avoid the chalk or just go down to Draymond and burn the salary. However in cash formats I would 100% get to Wiggins. Just follow the ownership in those contests.
Draymond Green ($6,800)
I am a bit perplexed with what to do with Green here. On one hand he should play 30-35 minutes and handle the ball a good bit. On the other hand Horford is still a more than competent defender and if Draymond isn't getting the peripherals then he is almost certainly going to let you down. In GPPs, I like him a lot more than Wiggins at half the ownership but it is a bit risky. In cash formats I would probably avoid and go with someone that holds higher ownership. It is that simple.
Robert Williams ($6,200)
He might be one of my favorite plays tonight just because I bet no one plays him and he can likely dominate Looney. However the injury is something that clearly hampered him in Game 7 and I don't know if only a few days off is enough to fully get him back to 100%. If they come out and say he is not on a minutes limit then I would try to get to him in GPPs. However, if they don't post that news or he looks gimpy in pre-game then probably just avoid him and hope he doesn't get close to 30 minutes. He is in a dead range anyways which usually means lower ownership. Just tread lightly with Time Lord tonight.
Derrick White ($5,400)
Another guy that I really don't know what I want to do with. He was honestly abysmal in all but one or maybe two games shooting from 3 in the last series and with Smart back 100% I just don't think he can get there. There are guys cheaper that probably can get to his DK score in general whilst saving yourself some salary. I would fade White in this spot.
Grant Williams ($4,800)
I think I am more inclined to go to Williams over White. He seems to be getting similar minutes and I trust his shot a lot more as well as to pick up some rebounds here and there. He should get in the 20 minutes range and even though he might not have the ceiling of White I think he has a much better floor. With how lengthy the Warriors can be I wouldn't be surprised if they went to Grant over White a lot in this series. I still don't really trust Grant which is why I would be cautious. The stars and scrubs build is likely going to outscore a balanced build with Grant more often than not.
Otto Porter ($4,000)
This is my favorite play on the slate. Porter is coming into this one a bit banged up but if he plays then I think he will 100% get the minutes and be a true factor. In the games he didn't get hurt in the previous series he scored 20+ DK points in all of them and played well in the regular season series against BOS. He fits the type of guy that can give you instant help off the bench to pair with Poole and really make it tough for Boston to keep up. He is priced just right for a balanced build that can still push a stars and scrubs build since you can get to everyone in the 7-8k range playing Porter. Hopefully he ends up playing because if he does I will be all over him.
Moses Moody ($2,000)
I think before considering Moody we need the Gary Payton news. If he does end up playing then I think Moody can kiss his minutes goodbye. They love Payton and will likely try to get him in when they can. I still think we are a game or two away from seeing Payton who broke his freaking elbow just a few weeks ago and is probably not 100%. No point in rushing back until you are down 0-2 or tied up 1-1. That being said if Payton does sit I think Moody is a fine punt option but I don't think he offers you much. There really isn't a reason to go this low.
Gary Payton ($1,600) or Nemanja Bjelica ($1,400)
Similar to Moody I don't see a reason to go this low unless you want all of Steph, Tatum or Brown. However if both are active I think one can be more than serviceable. Payton is a great defensive guy that can give you solid minutes but doesn't really have the upside. Bjelica however won't get the minutes exactly (probably settle in the 10 minutes range), but does have a high FPPM output. He will play the backup C minutes and is probably going to settle around 10 DK points. I don't hate that at all for a stars and scrubs build.
Fades (for me):
Jonathan Kuminga, Payton Pritchard, Damion Lee, Daniel Theis
Thanks for reading and best of luck

NBA Warriors vs. Mavericks Showdown Preview (Game 4)

The NBA Playoffs have finally hit the Conference Finals so that means it is Showdown Time! This is one of my favorite periods given the game theory nature of Showdown and want to do everything I can to get you guys the information you need to separate yourself from the pack and be unique while also having a shot at 1st place. There are four key things I look for in a player to have the highest probability of being optimal!
1. Price
2. Opponent DvP
3. Recent Minutes/Rotation Time
4. Usage Rate
These four statistics paired together are the best suitors to find a gem. Almost everyone I mention below hits on atleast 2 of these if not all of them! Hopefully this will help you be more successful while building lineups and give you a higher chance of winning the big bucks!
I would also like to note that I write these articles early in the day. It is always beneficial to check @Underdog__NBA for lineup changes. Those changes could have a direct effect on some of my "favorite plays" in the sense that if a cheap guy that was one of my favorites doesn't start, then they might no longer be a favorite play or even a play at all. Check out my Twitter @HeatingUpDFS for any updates on favorite play changes!
If you enjoy all of the content, there are multiple ways to show support! We have a Twitter and Discord Channel that you can join for up to the hour line up discussion and slate overviews! Also be sure to subscribe to our YouTube for our video breakdowns! Click the links below to join/follow!
For player projections throughout the rest of the playoffs, be sure to check out our FREE Projection Sheet! Just click the Premium button below.

Series Overview

With the series all but over, do we see Luka put on a masterclass to atleast keep the Mavericks alive or do Steph and the Warriors recognize that the other series is likely to be a war of attrition and try to end this one now so they can get the extra couple of days rest? I actually lean with the Warriors bringing out the brooms tonight, but it could go either way. It all comes down to will more than one person step it up to help Luka out or do we see limited help once again. I think it is best to try to dissect this one from multiple angles on the pricing side to see if we can build a lineup that fits a narrative AND has upside.

Captain Picks

For Showdown slates it is always crucial that you get the CPTN correct or you won't stand a chance at the top prize. Usually the top 0.1-1% of the highest scoring lineups in a SD setting feature the same CPTN with varying UTIL spot choices to round out the lineup. Given the rotations should remain fairly tight, there might only be two roster constructions you can choose tonight. The 1st is a stars and scrubs approach. That is where you take a top 3 option at CPTN, follow it up with 3 more of the top 5 priced options, and round it out with two guys that are extremely cheap in hopes that the stars get 80%+ of the usage and you only need 3-10 DK points from the cheap guys to get you to the top. The 2nd option, which will likely be my personal approach, is a balanced approach. Usually it comes with taking a mid range CPTN option, then multiple high to mid priced options at UTIL and only have to lean on one cheaper option that still has scoring viability. I think once again the main build for tonight will be stars and scrubs. We saw the optimal feature two guys that scored under 10 DK points in Game 3 and the pricing didn't change all that much for this one. After crunching the numbers with my point projections, there is a clear 10-15 DK point gap between a balanced build and the stars and scrubs approach once again which is why I think the field follows in that direction. Knowing that, the leverage could come from a more balanced build which allows you to only punt one position. Regardless, here are some of the guys that I think have either a strong chance at being optimal or give you some leverage at the CPTN spot to be more unique.
Luka Doncic ($21,600 CPTN) or Stephen Curry ($17,400 CPTN)
These two show up in nearly 100% of the top 150 lineups in FC which I would imagine almost any other set of projections will do as well. That means they will probably be captained in atleast 60-70% of lineups tonight. Everything is in line for them to be optimal and the only way to probably be unique with both (one CPTN, one UTIL) would likely be to burn a ton of money. I like the idea of fading one of them, preferably Doncic, but I haven't messed around with builds yet. Either way, from a safety perspective I think you should get both of these guys in your lineups in some fashion or you risk falling WAY behind quick.
Andrew Wiggins ($12,300 CPTN)
We saw a slight price bump for this game but it is for a good reason. He has just been automatic in this series, posting 34, 35, and 47 DK points in the three games. I do envision him getting a good bit of ownership and will likely be the 3rd most popular CPTN, but again it is for a good reason. He is only the 5th most expensive player in the game where he should probably be the 4th or 3rd in general. He checks all of the boxes here so he makes for a great play once again.
Kevon Looney ($10,500 CPTN)
He is also playing great ball right now, getting 28+ minutes in all 3 games while also posting 25, 40 and 30 DK points in the series. I don't see anything that should get in the way of that and he is the cheapest option that I feel confident can produce consistently (unlike DFS or Bullock) and gives you enough CPTN value to not punt two spots. That is really all there is to it.

Utility Picks

Along with all of the CPTN options, the following players look to be a good value tonight for a number of different reasons (pricing, matchup, ownership leverage, etc.)
Klay Thompson ($9,200)
New game. Same analysis with the exact same price tag ironically enough. It really sucks that Klay is the most expensive guys outside of the top 2 because you could make an argument that anyone from him to DFS can score around the same amount of DK points so for Klay to be optimal he would have to go nuts and Steph underwhelm. That is certainly in the realm of possibilities, but getting Steph/Luka/Klay is really hard tonight without punting CPTN. I love him in GPPs for leverage if you fade Steph, but prepare for disappointment.
Jalen Brunson ($9,000)
Once again Brunson exceeds my expectations. I really should give him more credit. He has scored 28, 49 and 31 DK points this series which in the grade scheme of things isn't all that great given the price. He gives you a slight savings if you fade Steph and a massive savings from Luka (as well as leverage), but you likely are looking at a 15-20 DK point gap that you have to make up from the savings. I don't know if that is possible tonight. Similar to Klay, I love him for GPPs as leverage but prepare for disappointment.
Draymond Green ($8,000)
I want to like Green, but I think the price is just a bit too lofty. He is going to get the minutes and facilitate quite a bit, but the upside just doesn't seem to be there. A lot of the work down low is going to Looney right now. I would look elsewhere personally but he makes for an interesting pivot off of Wiggins who will get most all of the ownership in this range.
Jordan Poole ($7,600)
Same can be said for Poole here as I did for the last game. I am really not a fan of Poole's production as of late. His minutes have come down and he really has to get hot shooting to rack up points which isn't my forte. However, his ownership will be lower than that of Wiggins and Draymond. I can get down to that because his ceiling is in line with both of theirs. I still think it is risky with how close the ownership will likely be. Id lean Green first over both of them.
Dorian Finney-Smith ($6,600)
Same story for DFS here. Dorian Finney Smith is an overpriced Bullock in my opinion. He will get a ton of minutes and maybe a slightly higher usage rate compared to Bullock but for a much higher price tag. He should be in the mid 20% ownership range which is actually decent because DFS does have a ceiling. Good luck guessing when that ceiling will come though. He has a good bit to deal with in the paint with Draymond his natural defender. I just don't think this series is set up for him to be successful and the price is still too lofty.
Spencer Dinwiddie ($6,800)
I think the one surprise from Game 3 was Dinwiddie. He played exceptionally well, scoring 26 points but only picked up 3 peripherals. At this price if his shot goes cold he will bust hard. It was one of the first times he broke 24 DK points in a while and I don't think it is repeatable. I would likely fade here. I doubt he is optimal two games in a row.
Reggie Bullock ($5,800)
Bullock was a massive low in Game 3, shooting 0-10 from the field. I think the really interesting part was he still picked up 8 rebounds + assists and some steals which really does well for his floor. I have a lot of confidence in saying he won't go broke again and I actually like him for some leverage. I don't think many people go to him tonight being that he is literally the dead range. I think if you can fit him in it is worth taking a shot on him tonight with how unique your lineups will end up being.
Maxi Kleber ($4,200)
Kleber's price has come down a bit for good reason. He has been absolutely worthless for DFS this series only scoring 7, 12 and 7 DK points. The big kicker is the minutes are extremely solid. He is playing 25 and 33 minutes in the last two games. I don't know if they try to change that up because he is completely ineffective but that isn't something we will know before hand. I don't like the price even if he is playing. I would probably fade here.
Dwight Powell ($2,000)
Now Powell is a very interesting option here. He is super cheap now and pretty much only gets the starting 6 minutes of the game and then sits the whole time. I don't get the motive behind this but with how Looney is playing I think they try to give him some extra run. He might only need 6-8 DK points today to be optimal. I am fine going with him here as your punt if you want to get away from the bottom barrel plays below.
Davis Bertans ($2,600)
I feel the same for Bertans as I do Powell. He is cheap, can shoot and Kleber isn't effective at all. They might try to change things up which would lead to more Powell and Bertans. The important thing to note about Bertans is he can hit 3's and can get you back into the game with his shot. I feel like Powell can't do that for you. I wish he was a bit cheaper because the scoring has been pretty trash this series, but he can still get hot.
Moses Moody ($1,000)
Moody has taken all of the Damion Lee minutes of late, grabbing 10 and 16 minutes in the last two games. He gets almost no usage but atleast he is playing and he flat min. If you want Luka or Steph CPTN and want to double up on both then you might have to use Moody. That is really all there is to say. Don't expect north of 10 DK points but if he gets close to that then he likely will be optimal with how the usage shakes out.
Juan Toscano-Anderson ($1,000)
When Otto Porter went down they gave JTA a few minutes in the rotation. If he falls into a few rebounds and a put back or two he could be optimal over Moody who will have 3-4x the ownership. Just some food for thought.
Fades (for me):
Jonathan Kuminga, Frank Ntilikina
Thanks for reading and best of luck

NBA Heat vs. Celtics Showdown Preview (Game 4)

The NBA Playoffs have finally hit the Conference Finals so that means it is Showdown Time! This is one of my favorite periods given the game theory nature of Showdown and want to do everything I can to get you guys the information you need to separate yourself from the pack and be unique while also having a shot at 1st place. There are four key things I look for in a player to have the highest probability of being optimal!
1. Price
2. Opponent DvP
3. Recent Minutes/Rotation Time
4. Usage Rate
These four statistics paired together are the best suitors to find a gem. Almost everyone I mention below hits on atleast 2 of these if not all of them! Hopefully this will help you be more successful while building lineups and give you a higher chance of winning the big bucks!
I would also like to note that I write these articles early in the day. It is always beneficial to check @Underdog__NBA for lineup changes. Those changes could have a direct effect on some of my "favorite plays" in the sense that if a cheap guy that was one of my favorites doesn't start, then they might no longer be a favorite play or even a play at all. Check out my Twitter @HeatingUpDFS for any updates on favorite play changes!
If you enjoy all of the content, there are multiple ways to show support! We have a Twitter and Discord Channel that you can join for up to the hour line up discussion and slate overviews! Also be sure to subscribe to our YouTube for our video breakdowns! Click the links below to join/follow!
For player projections throughout the rest of the playoffs, be sure to check out our FREE Projection Sheet! Just click the Premium button below.

Series Overview

The injuries and referees all but ruined Game 3 in which the Heat took in Boston. I think not having Robert Williams was a major factor in that happening which I will get into later. I think this is for sure a must win game for Boston and they still should win. They come in as 6.5 point favorites and should have everyone healthy for this game. Just be sure to factor that in while building your lineups. Also be sure to monitor all of the injury designations for this game. Things could change big time if someone is ruled out. Stay fluid!

Captain Picks

For Showdown slates it is always crucial that you get the CPTN correct or you won't stand a chance at the top prize. Usually the top 0.1-1% of the highest scoring lineups in a SD setting feature the same CPTN with varying UTIL spot choices to round out the lineup. Given the rotations should remain fairly tight, there might only be two roster constructions you can choose tonight. The 1st is a stars and scrubs approach. That is where you take a top 3 option at CPTN, follow it up with 3 more of the top 5 priced options, and round it out with two guys that are extremely cheap in hopes that the stars get 80%+ of the usage and you only need 3-10 DK points from the cheap guys to get you to the top. The 2nd option, which will likely be my personal approach, is a balanced approach. Usually it comes with taking a mid range CPTN option, then multiple high to mid priced options at UTIL and only have to lean on one cheaper option that still has scoring viability. With how much usage the mid range gets from both of these teams, I think this is likely the most efficient approach.

Draftkings has done a good job of pricing up the mid range to almost force you into having to think about rostering a top 3 priced option. Last night we saw the optimal remain with Luka and Steph. However it was a clear stars and scrubs build with the 5th/6th spot in the lineup being low priced options that only needed 7 and 3 DK points respectively. It will be interesting to see if people try to mimic that type of build tonight which will inflate the cheap option's ownership. Only time will tell. The following options make the most sense at CPTN, for me, that give you high upside while also gaining some leverage ownership wise.
Jaylen Brown ($14,700 CPTN)
I still think most of the field (50% or more) will CPTN Tatum or Butler which makes it hard to get to Brown in general. We also get a Bam Adebayo price down after a monster game which will also eat up a TON of ownership at CPTN just with what it can afford you. That should leave us with Jaylen Brown under owned across the board, especially at CPTN. He has scored north of 40 DK points in all 3 games with a 55 DK point outing last game. He was overshadowed by a Bam masterclass last game yet still produced in a massive way. I think he should continue to dominate this series with eyes on Tatum at all times. I just really like him here given the balance in lower ownership and high upside.
Robert Williams ($9,600 CPTN)**
Just be sure to monitor Williams' availability tonight because if he is out this play changes directly to Al Horford. Williams is a high FPPM type of guy that does it across the board. After what Bam did to them last game I think they need Robert in a big way to get back and play close to 30 minutes. The Heat took all of 2 minutes to figure out how to beat the Celtics without Robert and I don't think they can afford to be without him. His defensive presence in defending Bam is just to large of an advantage. So if Williams starts, he should play 25-30 minutes, be lower owned, and have a shot at 30+ DK points. He lets you afford atleast 2 of the top 4 priced plays as well if you CPTN him which I really like the prospects of. This is a boom or bust type of play, but if it hits you could be looking at a top 0.1-1% lineup for sure.
PJ Tucker ($6,300 CPTN)
I just think Tucker is too cheap for the minutes he should be getting. That is about it. He is not what I would call a high FPPM type of guy like Williams, but he shoots 3's, grabs rebounds, will play 30+ minutes and open up the salary to get possibly 3 top 4 priced options with the rest of your lineup. Again, this could fail miserably but with the way DK is pricing the mid range you might have to punt down at CPTN which Tucker allows you to do.

Utility Picks

Along with all of the CPTN options, the following players look to be a good value tonight for a number of different reasons (pricing, matchup, ownership leverage, etc.)
Jayson Tatum ($11,000)
Tatum got a stinger last game and was apparently "hurt" which I think is a load of garbage. It was an excuse for his crappy play which I still think was an outlier. He should bounce back here and play similar to his Game 1 and 2 scores where you likely will need him if you want to win. I think his "injury" is less of a concern than Butler's who I actually think could end up being an issue tonight if he sits tonight. Again just be sure to monitor everything, but I still like Tatum on DK more than Butler in general.
Jimmy Butler ($10,600)
Butler left with knee inflammation in Game 3 which is definitely something to be concerned about. He looked generally fine until the news broke unexpectedly after the half that he wasn't going to return. I really think that Butler is a guy that if he will be low owned tonight then I will go there, but if there is ownership I would lean towards Tatum and Brown. I think they are more in a must win spot and will be more locked in to produce.
Marcus Smart ($8,600)
If you want some leverage then just play Smart tonight. His price is wayyy too high for the production and I expect Tatum to get back on track tonight. He now has a bit tougher of a matchup against Lowry which could limit the upside. I still like him and think he should get close to 40 DK points, but he legit needs to hit that to have a shot at being optimal. The price just doesn't do him any favors.
Bam Adebayo ($7,600)
I want whatever drugs DK is smoking with this price down of Bam. He just went for 63 DK points yet they brought him down $400. He will be insanely owned tonight and I want nothing to do with that, especially if they bring back Robert Williams. They just employed a horrible gameplan against him starting Theis at the 5 and not Horford. They should have gone to Grant Williams/Horford. Nonetheless if the Celtics go right back to Theis starting in the event that Robert Williams is out then I would roll out Bam with confidence regardless of ownership. If they start Robert Williams I would fade Bam. He will likely regress in a massive way.
Al Horford ($7,400)
I would much prefer to pivot down to Horford over Bam if Robert Williams is starting 100%. He will get points in a multitude of different ways. He will get the minutes and has a massive height advantage over PJ Tucker. This is a leverage play more for me over a projection guy. I just don't think he will come in too highly owned. Other than that he is just a decent play.
Max Strus ($6,800)
I still am not a huge fan because the ceiling isn't exactly there. I wish he was low 6k or high 5k range and I would be intrigued. The only thing going for him will likely be ownership. He won't be too highly owned but I think that is for a reason. I wouldn't really play him here and just find the salary to go up to one of the guys above.
Kyle Lowry ($6,600)
If there is a guy in this range I am going to go to from MIA it is Lowry. He is going to handle the ball plenty, should get the minutes even with Butler back. His usage was really solid in his game back and got solid usage. I just think he is a great value. If he comes in with a low ownership projection then I would try to play him wherever I can. He checks all of the boxes tonight.
Tyler Herro ($6,200)
I am not a fan of Herro here. His minutes are dropping and his shot isn't falling. Given the price he just doesn't make much sense. I would try to fade him here even at a lower ownership.

UPDATE: He is out. Lowry and Strus become a lot more appealing
Derrick White ($5,400)
White has been truly horrible in this series which gives me all the reason to fade him. His minutes are dropping, the usage is horrible and his shot isn't falling. Even at a cheaper price tag I would try to go up to Lowry or down to Williams about 99 times out of 100.
Grant Williams ($5,200)
Even with Robert Williams projected to come back I really like Grant's minutes at this price. He has 27 and 21 DK points in the last two games off the bench which I think fits his role well. He gets cleaner looks and better usage there against softer defenses. With DK pricing a lot of guys up I think Grant at a lower price point is actually really solid. He makes for a great 5th options tonight in your lineups.
Payton Pritchard ($5,000)
I am not a big fan of Pritchard with White back and a somewhat healthy smart eating up a ton of minutes. The price is just too steep. Unless this blows out there is no way he cna be optimal with this role and minutes.
Gabe Vincent ($4,600)
Even with Herro out I am not a huge fan. I would look to Oladipo for $200 less that actually fills Herro's role and minutes. Vincent is more of a Lowry backup and the price difference between those two isn't enough.
Victor Oladipo ($4,400)
I love this guy tonight. His minutes should come up big time with Herro out. He played amazing defense in the second half without Butler. The DK points didn't translate well in the last game which should keep his ownership suppressed. I think he could be a homerun play tonight.
Caleb Martin ($1,400)
This is about the last guy I would consider playing just because after him there is almost no one that could crack even 5 DK points or 6 minutes of action. There is no upside from anyone else. Martin atleast you know will get you 10 minutes with a decent FPPM output to boot. If you want a pricey CPTN you might have to go Martin here so keep him in your player pool.
Daniel Theis ($1,200)
I would only consider Theis if Robert Williams is out. If he plays then odds are Theis is a DNP-CD. Just keep an eye on Robert's availability before considering Theis.
Fades (for me):
Dewayne Dedmon, Duncan Robinson
Thanks for reading and best of luck

NBA Warriors vs. Mavericks Showdown Preview (Game 2)

The NBA Playoffs have finally hit the Conference Finals so that means it is Showdown Time! This is one of my favorite periods given the game theory nature of Showdown and want to do everything I can to get you guys the information you need to separate yourself from the pack and be unique while also having a shot at 1st place. There are four key things I look for in a player to have the highest probability of being optimal!
1. Price
2. Opponent DvP
3. Recent Minutes/Rotation Time
4. Usage Rate
These four statistics paired together are the best suitors to find a gem. Almost everyone I mention below hits on atleast 2 of these if not all of them! Hopefully this will help you be more successful while building lineups and give you a higher chance of winning the big bucks!
I would also like to note that I write these articles early in the day. It is always beneficial to check @Underdog__NBA for lineup changes. Those changes could have a direct effect on some of my "favorite plays" in the sense that if a cheap guy that was one of my favorites doesn't start, then they might no longer be a favorite play or even a play at all. Check out my Twitter @HeatingUpDFS for any updates on favorite play changes!
If you enjoy all of the content, there are multiple ways to show support! We have a Twitter and Discord Channel that you can join for up to the hour line up discussion and slate overviews! Also be sure to subscribe to our YouTube for our video breakdowns! Click the links below to join/follow!
For player projections throughout the rest of the playoffs, be sure to check out our FREE Projection Sheet! Just click the Premium button below.

Series Overview

The Warriors really put the Mavs in their place in Game 1 with an absolute blowout. I still think that the Mavs get a game or two in this series, but things are looking bleak for them to make the Finals. Luka disappointed massively and there was clearly something going on in Game 1 with his shoulder. I think a lot hinges on whether or not Luka is fully healthy. If he is still banged up and won't be 100% the rest of the series this could be over quick. However if he is able to get over this and continue to carry this team then I think the Mavs can turn some heads. I think this becomes a pivotal game in the series. If the Mavs get blown out again this series might not make it back to GS with the Warriors sweeping. Only time will tell.

Captain Picks

For Showdown slates it is always crucial that you get the CPTN correct or you won't stand a chance at the top prize. Usually the top 0.1-1% of the highest scoring lineups in a SD setting feature the same CPTN with varying UTIL spot choices to round out the lineup. Given the rotations should remain fairly tight, there might only be two roster constructions you can choose tonight. The 1st is a stars and scrubs approach. That is where you take a top 3 option at CPTN, follow it up with 3 more of the top 5 priced options, and round it out with two guys that are extremely cheap in hopes that the stars get 80%+ of the usage and you only need 3-10 DK points from the cheap guys to get you to the top. The 2nd option, which will likely be my personal approach, is a balanced approach. Usually it comes with taking a mid range CPTN option, then multiple high to mid priced options at UTIL and only have to lean on one cheaper option that still has scoring viability. I think the main build for tonight will be stars and scrubs. I doubt there are too many games in this series where either Luka or Curry are out of the optimal (Luka was not optimal Game 1). A lot comes down to Luka's injury. The following guys I think have a strong chance at being optimal or give you a lot of leverage at CPTN without giving up win equity.
Luka Doncic ($20,400 CPTN) or Stephen Curry ($17,100 CPTN)
Both Luka and Curry got priced up a bit. Curry dominated and Luka underwhelmed which was quite surprising. I think Curry and Luka are almost for sure going to be top scorers in the game throughout the series, so picking one of them at CPTN makes the most sense. The only thing you really have to consider is atleast 80% of the field will likely have one of these two at CPTN. Is there an 80% chance these two finish as the optimal CPTN? That is quite possible, but if you want to get a bit of leverage, not captaining one of them could be a decent option to increase uniqueness. All in all, I am going right back to the well with Luka and expecting him to be the optimal CPTN. Steph I still could let you down if his shot isn't falling. However the peripherals are propping his floor up quite a bit right now so he should be optimal in some form regardless. Try to get both of these dudes and then get leverage in other spots.
Andrew Wiggins ($11,400 CPTN)
I can say the same thing as I did in Game 1. I think this is a sneaky smart play at CPTN that should be less than 5% owned up top. He played excellent in the MEM series and great against DAL in the regular reason (AVG 30 DK points/game vs. MEM and in the reg. season vs. DAL). He showed up in Game 1 to the tune of 34 DK points which was respectable and was even apart of the optimal lineup at UTIL. If Luka comes back to life and does his normal thing then you might have to go down at CPTN to avoid punting the last 2-3 UTIL spots. He should see Bullock on defense quite a bit who actually fell off in the defensive category since coming from the Knicks. He is going to get the minutes, shots and an easier matchup. You really can't go wrong with him tonight.
Reggie Bullock ($7,500 CPTN)
Bullock is going to play a ton that is for sure. He scored 22 DK points in 36 minutes of a blowout in Game 1. That number could honestly go up in this one and he is extremely cheap. Going with him at CPTN could get you Luka, Steph and one more pay up option before having to consider the cheaper guys. His ceiling isn't too high but he has the floor just on the minutes alone and gives you tons of options at the UTIL spot. He should come in at around 1-2% ownership at CPTN and if he starts hitting some 3s and the other studs go off then you might be getting a ton of leverage with just that move. It is risky, but I think it is certainly viable.

Utility Picks

Along with all of the CPTN options, the following players look to be a good value tonight for a number of different reasons (pricing, matchup, ownership leverage, etc.)
Klay Thompson ($9,200)
It really sucks that Klay is the most expensive guys outside of the top 2 because you could make an argument that anyone from him to DFS can and will score around the same amount of DK points so for Klay to be optimal he would have to go nuts and Steph underwhelm. That is certainly in the realm of possibilities, but getting Steph/Luka/Klay is really hard tonight without punting CPTN. I love him in GPPs for leverage if you fade Steph, but prepare for disappointment.
Jalen Brunson ($8,600)
To be honest I hate Brunson in all formats. His ceiling just isn't there and I doubt that he is optimal two games in a row unless Luka is injured. With the way the Warriors defend Game 1 was pretty much his ceiling. I don't like chasing that at all and I am more than willing to die on this hill.
Draymond Green ($8,200)
I actually prefer Green over a lot of guys tonight with how he picks up peripherals. He has serious triple double upside and the matchup to grab boards isn't a difficult one at all. If he can be more involved in the facilitation department and get some extra assists then 40+ DK points is certainly in the cards. It really all comes down to whether or not he can outpace the likes of Brunson, Poole and Wiggins which I think he certainly can.
Jordan Poole ($8,000)
I am really not a fan of Poole's production as of late. His minutes have come down and he really has to get hot shooting to rack up points which isn't my forte. However, his ownership will be lower than that of Brunson and Draymond. I can get down to that because his ceiling is in line with both of theirs. I still think it is risky with how close the ownership will likely be. Id lean Green first over both of them.
Dorian Finney-Smith ($6,600)
Dorian Finney Smith is an overpriced Bullock in my opinion. He will get a ton of minutes and maybe a slightly higher usage rate compared to Bullock but for a much higher price tag. He should be in the mid 20% ownership range which is actually decent because DFS does have a ceiling. Good luck guessing when that ceiling will come though. He has a good bit to deal with in the paint with Draymond his natural defender. I just don't think this series is set up for him to be successful and the price is still too lofty.
Spencer Dinwiddie ($6,800)
I liked Dinwiddie in Game 1 because I thought he would come in under owned and had a shot at getting some extra minutes. Well he didn't really get any extra minutes and got a price jump after underwhelming at 30% ownership which was way higher than I expected. He is a big pass for me here. I just think he is a poor mans Poole who I don't really like anyways. The floor is too low given his peripherals are non existent.
Kevin Looney ($4,800)
Looney got a healthy 28 minutes in Game 1 which was quite surprising with the Mavs going small. He did play really well in Game 1 so there is not reason to believe he doesn't continue to get those minutes. I think he is a great value option that might come in a bit over owned. I still think the ownership is warranted which is why I am fine going back to him here.
Otto Porter ($4,200)
I think Porter should get the "small ball" minutes tonight and in this series in general. I think the price is way too low and he is a great play BARRING massive ownership numbers. If he comes in at a decent ownership projection then I would try to get him in however you can. I honestly don't even hate him at CPTN if it lets you fit in what you want. I just really like his usage as well with this second unit.
Maxi Kleber ($4,600)
I think a bit of the issue with Kleber last game was that the blowout caused him to not get as many minutes. It seemed pretty obvious they wanted to go to a small ball lineup which would include Kleber but he wasn't getting the usage while they were trying to get back into it. If he can get back to the mid 20s minutes and see his usage come up a tad I actually think he can be a great play from a median projection standpoint and ownership. I don't think he will be too highly owned and for the price he can probably grade out as a solid value. I actually really like him here as a mid range pivot off of either Porter or Looney (I still think you need one of those guys)
Dwight Powell ($3,200)
Not a huge fan at all. The price is too steep for a guy that will get max 15 minutes and they are trying to go small. He doesn't fit that mold.
Davis Bertans ($2,400)
I have some intrigue for Bertans because they did give him the minutes I expected and he fits that small ball lineup mold. He can shoot if they get down, but Kleber can do the same thing. I just think he is a poor mans Kleber that doesn't have the ceiling and a lower floor. Leave him as a 6th man in only if you need someone this cheap.
Damion Lee ($1,600)
I would rather go to Lee here who will get the same minutes as Bertans but might actually do something with them for $800 cheaper. He is getting in the low teens for minutes and I doubt he gets just 1 shot attempt again tonight. He is the perfect filler if you really need to punt at the 6th UTIL spot and have an expensive CPTN (Luka or Curry). I would likely avoid trying to punt CPTN and at the 6th spot just to get the top 4 priced options at the other UTIL spots.
Frank Ntilikina ($1,000)
Same as last game for Frank here. Very similar situation to Lee. He got a 8-12 minutes/game towards the end of the PHX series and actually got 18 minutes in his last game against GS this season. He played 10 minutes in Game 1 and amassed just 1 DK points. That is putrid. I really just don't like his usage compared to Lee, but if Lee ends up getting 4-5x the ownership of Frank then I think it worth considering the pivot.
Fades (for me):
Jonathan Kuminga
Thanks for reading and best of luck

NBA Heat vs. Celtics Showdown Preview (Game 2)

The NBA Playoffs have finally hit the Conference Finals so that means it is Showdown Time! This is one of my favorite periods given the game theory nature of Showdown and want to do everything I can to get you guys the information you need to separate yourself from the pack and be unique while also having a shot at 1st place. There are four key things I look for in a player to have the highest probability of being optimal!
1. Price
2. Opponent DvP
3. Recent Minutes/Rotation Time
4. Usage Rate
These four statistics paired together are the best suitors to find a gem. Almost everyone I mention below hits on atleast 2 of these if not all of them! Hopefully this will help you be more successful while building lineups and give you a higher chance of winning the big bucks!
I would also like to note that I write these articles early in the day. It is always beneficial to check @Underdog__NBA for lineup changes. Those changes could have a direct effect on some of my "favorite plays" in the sense that if a cheap guy that was one of my favorites doesn't start, then they might no longer be a favorite play or even a play at all. Check out my Twitter @HeatingUpDFS for any updates on favorite play changes!
If you enjoy all of the content, there are multiple ways to show support! We have a Twitter and Discord Channel that you can join for up to the hour line up discussion and slate overviews! Also be sure to subscribe to our YouTube for our video breakdowns! Click the links below to join/follow!
For player projections throughout the rest of the playoffs, be sure to check out our FREE Projection Sheet! Just click the Premium button below.

Series Overview

Game 1 was a tale of multiple quarters with the Celtics honestly dominating for 3 quarters (1st/2nd/4th) and the only reason the Heat won was because they took over in the 3rd, outscoring the Celtics 39-14. You can't win games losing a quarter by that much when you are without two starters. Butler absolutely carried them, amassing 73 DK points. He was the clear CPTN option to go to and was one of my favorite from Game 1. I even pivoted off of the winning lineup because it used all $50,000 of the salary which I avoid in SDs (it usually is duplicated way too much). Nonetheless, I think the Celtics can easily take Game 2 with Smart back even with Horford still out for this one. Going into Boston with a 1-1 series would be a lot more appealing for the NBA and the Celtics and I am pretty confident we see it happen tonight. It will be very interesting how the Celtics change their defensive plan to stop Butler. Will they just let him continue to dominate and stop all the other options (Bam/Strus/Vincent) or try to stop Butler and let the others beat them? Only time will tell but I am very excited for the prospects of this game tonight.

Captain Picks

For Showdown slates it is always crucial that you get the CPTN correct or you won't stand a chance at the top prize. Usually the top 0.1-1% of the highest scoring lineups in a SD setting feature the same CPTN with varying UTIL spot choices to round out the lineup. Given the rotations should remain fairly tight, there might only be two roster constructions you can choose tonight. The 1st is a stars and scrubs approach. That is where you take a top 3 option at CPTN, follow it up with 3 more of the top 5 priced options, and round it out with two guys that are extremely cheap in hopes that the stars get 80%+ of the usage and you only need 3-10 DK points from the cheap guys to get you to the top. The 2nd option, which will likely be my personal approach, is a balanced approach. Usually it comes with taking a mid range CPTN option, then multiple high to mid priced options at UTIL and only have to lean on one cheaper option that still has scoring viability. With how much usage the mid range gets from both of these teams, I think this is likely the most efficient approach.

The clear roster construction tonight will be to CPTN Tatum or Butler and then take 3 mid range guys and one punt. Just be sure to factor that in while you are creating your lineups. It is almost always advantageous to try to be unique and avoid this build if you want a solo win.The following players feel like the best options to role with at that CPTN spot who also give you a bit of leverage over the field.
Jayson Tatum ($15,900 CPTN) and Jimmy Butler ($16,500 CPTN)
I am not going to talk anyone off of this build even if it will be chalky. From an optimal standpoint they will still have a massive gap over the mid range CPTN strategies who will likely project close to 15-20 points lower as the optimal build. There are plenty of ways to get unique even with one of them at CPTN. It probably would come in the form of fading the other which could for certain work out. The prices have flipped from Game 1 with Butler now a couple hundred more than Tatum vs. Tatum being $1,200 more in Game 1. I still think I prefer Butler over Tatum if you are wondering which I like more. I think the Celtics have fewer defensive options to stop Butler whereas the Heat can properly defend Tatum if they focus on him. All in all, you can still CPTN one of these guys and even stack both at CPTN + UTIL, but be prepared to chop with 10's if not 100's of other lineups.
Marcus Smart ($10,800 CPTN)
I think this is the best CPTN you can go to and actually have a chance at being unique. He missed Game 1 with an injury and will likely come in lower owned because of that. He is still likely to see 30+ minutes with solid usage and will get plenty of peripherals to boot. Pritchard was able to play very well in Game 1 and I think Smart can replicate that. He is a big game player and as long as he is 100% healthy I think he can produce in a big way tonight.
Gabe Vincent ($6,600 CPTN)
With Lowry still out, Vincent should see the bulk of the PG minutes and is still way too cheap. He is seeing mid teens usage and around 30 minutes of action which at this price range you wont find. If going Vincent CPTN saves you from having to punt down at your 6th UTIL spot then it might be an optimal move. My only fear is you probably need him to repeat his Game 1 performance of 31 DK points to have a shot at being optimal. Regardless, he offers some leverage at CPTN where only 3-5% of the field will go that direction.

Utility Picks

Along with all of the CPTN options, the following players look to be a good value tonight for a number of different reasons (pricing, matchup, ownership leverage, etc.)
Jaylen Brown ($9,400)
To be honest Brown is also fine at CPTN. He just has the Heat's number this season, scoring 40 DK points in 3 of the 4 games against MIA this season. From an ownership perspective I think I like Brown more than Tatum. He will probably be 15-20% lower owned and to certain extent can easily outscore Tatum if the Heat just make an effort to force the other C's to beat them. There really isn't much to say. Brown will get minutes, shots, usage and plenty of scoring. If he doesn't then it is likely the Celtics get blown.
Bam Adebayo ($8,400)
Bam just hasn't played well in his career when Robert Williams starts at C. He is definitely a leverage play but I still don't trust him. The minutes will be there and so will the usage but he might just not rack up enough points to contend with the Browns/Tatums/Butlers of this game. Bam is definitely one that I want to love for the savings but I see him letting you down more often then not. I think he is optimal once or twice in this series, but good luck figuring out which that will happen in.
Tyler Herro ($6,800)
I still like Herro tonight with the minutes and usage he should get. The price is still fairly cheap given he scored 33 DK points in Game 1. The only thing I don't like about Herro is his REB% is extremely volatile. Game 1 was an example where he had a strong REB%, but if he isn't able to grab those then he could ruin your lineup tonight. Herro is basically a "flip a coin" type of player. He could be optimal or help you pay the rake. Regardless I still like him as long as ownership projections have him lower owned. If he is high owned I would pass.
Max Strus ($6,400)
The price is somewhat tolerable now and I still think the minutes are in a great spot and he won't garner much ownership at all. As long as he can just pick up the peripherals he should be solid. I think he has a strong floor in this current rotation just based on usage and minutes alone. I still think the price is a bit too steep for my liking and he is really hard to get to if you want to get Butler and Tatum, but nonetheless I think he makes for a solid GPP option. I would probably avoid in cash games.
Robert Williams ($6,200)
I still love Williams here and will probably continue to love him as long as he is under $7,000. He is a high FPPM type of guy that plays his heart out and as long as he is healthy he should be fine. He will eat up all of the ownership compared to Strus and for good reason. However, if Bam gets him into foul trouble (which I think the Heat should try to do) then Williams could bust hard. He is still coming off of injury and I think there is some cause for concern. I am just a "ride or die" Williams fan who tries to play him whenever I can. For tournaments I actually think I would prefer Strus or Herro.
Grant Williams ($5,400)
Not a huge fan here. He just isn't as productive with Robert Williams in the lineup and I would go down to Pritchard/Tucker/Vincent or up to Robert/Strus/Herro in almost every instance. Avoid across the board.
Payton Pritchard ($4,800)
Pritchard got a bit lucky having Smart out in Game 1 and gets even luckier in Game 2 with White missing due to personal reasons. He should see in the 20-25 minute range with decent usage and is always live to hit a good amount of 3's. I wish he was closer to $4,000 then $5,000 but I still think he can be optimal. I would avoid stacking him with Smart because they don't correlate. Just a roster construction tip for you with Pritchard and Smart.
PJ Tucker ($4,600)
I think with the White news coming out I would prefer Pritchard over Tucker. However ownership will 100% side that direction as well and if we see Tucker come in under 20% again then I think there is some merit to going back to him. He might not have the highest FPPM output but he will play big minutes and has broken out of his "5 DK point" floor. I think he settles in the 20 DK point ceiling range, but if you are playing the ownership game I think he gives you some solid leverage.
Dewayne Dedmon ($2,000)
I have literally the exact same excerpt for Dedmon as I did for Game 1.There isn't much to say here about Dedmon. He probably won't break 15 minutes and the usage won't be there. If you really want to get 3-4 studs though you might have to consider Dedmon. However, there is a significantly higher ceiling and floor for Daniel Theis who is $200 cheaper. I would go there 99% of the time.
Daniel Theis ($1,800)
Theis will likely come in 50% owned if not higher in any contest. He should be a lock in cash. I think he is a great play regardless and I think you have to play him if you want a top 5 priced option at CPTN. There is only 1 other play down this low that might have a shot at making Theis not optimal and that is...
Aaron Nesmith ($1,000)
Nesmith should get 10 minutes and okay usage with little ownership. He is the clear pivot off of Theis and will likely be 1/10th as owned. If that extra $800 gets you from one player to another that you like more it actually might be a smart pivot. I wouldn't expect him to get anything more than 10 DK points. He got 8.25 DK points in 11 minutes in Game 1 without Smart. Now they are without White who probably plays more SG anyways. That could mean Nesmith gets closer to 15 minutes here.
Fades (for me):
Victor Oladipo
Thanks for reading and best of luck

NBA Warriors vs. Mavericks Showdown Preview (Game 1)

The NBA Playoffs have finally hit the Conference Finals so that means it is Showdown Time! This is one of my favorite periods given the game theory nature of Showdown and want to do everything I can to get you guys the information you need to separate yourself from the pack and be unique while also having a shot at 1st place. There are four key things I look for in a player to have the highest probability of being optimal!
1. Price
2. Opponent DvP
3. Recent Minutes/Rotation Time
4. Usage Rate
These four statistics paired together are the best suitors to find a gem. Almost everyone I mention below hits on atleast 2 of these if not all of them! Hopefully this will help you be more successful while building lineups and give you a higher chance of winning the big bucks!
I would also like to note that I write these articles early in the day. It is always beneficial to check @Underdog__NBA for lineup changes. Those changes could have a direct effect on some of my "favorite plays" in the sense that if a cheap guy that was one of my favorites doesn't start, then they might no longer be a favorite play or even a play at all. Check out my Twitter @HeatingUpDFS for any updates on favorite play changes!
If you enjoy all of the content, there are multiple ways to show support! We have a Twitter and Discord Channel that you can join for up to the hour line up discussion and slate overviews! Also be sure to subscribe to our YouTube for our video breakdowns! Click the links below to join/follow!
For player projections throughout the rest of the playoffs, be sure to check out our FREE Projection Sheet! Just click the Premium button below.

Series Overview

This should be more of an offensive affair with neither team having a defensive option to stop the other team's top player (Luka and Steph). This definitely feels like a David vs. Goliath matchup with GS having much more experience compared to Luka and the Mavs. Regardless of that fact, I think this should be a close series. Luka is unstoppable at the moment and unless the Warriors just get stupid hot from 3, Doncic should be able to win a few games by himself. As for the Warriors it all comes down to efficiency. I think DFS and Bullock can do enough defensively to stop Klay and Wiggins that they might stand a chance at winning the entire series. We know both of these teams can produce points here. I think the entire series comes down to who is the most efficient defensively.

Captain Picks

For Showdown slates it is always crucial that you get the CPTN correct or you won't stand a chance at the top prize. Usually the top 0.1-1% of the highest scoring lineups in a SD setting feature the same CPTN with varying UTIL spot choices to round out the lineup. Given the rotations should remain fairly tight, there might only be two roster constructions you can choose tonight. The 1st is a stars and scrubs approach. That is where you take a top 3 option at CPTN, follow it up with 3 more of the top 5 priced options, and round it out with two guys that are extremely cheap in hopes that the stars get 80%+ of the usage and you only need 3-10 DK points from the cheap guys to get you to the top. The 2nd option, which will likely be my personal approach, is a balanced approach. Usually it comes with taking a mid range CPTN option, then multiple high to mid priced options at UTIL and only have to lean on one cheaper option that still has scoring viability. With how much usage the mid range gets from both of these teams, I think this is likely the most efficient approach. The following players feel like the best options to role with at that CPTN spot who might also give you a bit of leverage over the field.
Luka Doncic ($20,100 CPTN)
I would like to bet serious money that Luka is the highest scoring player in this game and the series. If you can find the value, which I think there is, then CPTN Luka is always the move. Don't overthink that
Andrew Wiggins ($11,700 CPTN)
I think this is a sneaky smart play at CPTN that should be less than 5% owned up top. He played excellent in the MEM series and great against DAL in the regular reason (AVG 30 DK points/game vs. MEM and in the reg. season vs. DAL). He should see Bullock on defense quite a bit who actually fell off in the defensive category since coming from the Knicks. He is going to get the minutes, shots and an easier matchup. You really can't go wrong with him tonight.
Stephen Curry ($16,500 CPTN)
I think my main reason for still liking Steph at CPTN here is that I think the ownership might actually be a bit lower. Most that are willing to pay up at CPTN will just go to Luka. I don't think many have the ceiling that Steph does even if he isn't playing all that well at the moment. That alone makes me still want some pieces of him at CPTN and certainly at UTIL.

Utility Picks

Along with all of the CPTN options, the following players look to be a good value tonight for a number of different reasons (pricing, matchup, ownership leverage, etc.)
Klay Thompson ($9,000)
We all know Klay can get incredibly hot and can always break the slate. Just looking at lineup construction and pricing Klay doesn't fit the cash mold at all with most going Luka/Steph/Wiggins. I think that gives you a bit of leverage over the field if you opt to fade Steph or just cram in the punt plays. He has a strong floor, high ceiling and will get the minutes and shots. What more is there to say? Klay is a really solid play tonight.
Jalen Brunson ($8,400)
Brunson didn't play all that well in the regular season series against GS, only scoring 27 DK points once. I think the price is just a bit too steep for my liking and will likely fade. I think you should do as well. The matchup against Klay just isn't the best for him.
Draymond Green ($8,200)
I think this is for sure an option if he wasn't so expensive. He just hasn't been as productive as the price would intend and I think it makes it tough to get to him. This might sound crazy but his Game 6 against MEM was an anomaly. He got up 14 shots which was a SEASON HIGH. That alone brought his price up to a point that he would need a borderline triple double to pay off this price tag. He will probably be solid leverage but I won't be going there.
Jordan Poole ($8,000)
Similar to Green, I really don't think the price is reflective of his recent play. He finished out the MEM series on a couple low points with just 20 and 24 minutes in the final two games. That might not continue into this one, but when GS gets a rotation down they don't typically go away from it. I just don't think he can get up a stat line that will come close to something Klay/Luka/Steph will be getting. He is likely another pass for me.
Dorian Finney-Smith ($6,800)
DFS is one of the most volatile players on the slate. He got up above 25 DK points four times in the PHX series, but under 15 in the other three. He actually played great in the regular season GS series, scoring 27+ DK points in 3 of the 4 matchups. I actually think this could be a great mid range play that will for sure get the minutes. Usage will always be his issue and if he gets it then he will likely be optimal. I love guys like that even if they sink me from time to time.
Spencer Dinwiddie ($6,400)
Dinwiddie might get some extra run in this series and that makes me extremely excited. They will need his shooting to keep up with GS and is priced in a weird spot to where his ownership will likely be nonexistent. That gives you massive leverage over the field if he gets back to the 28-30 minute mark and plenty of shots. He will likely never be the #1 option on the court so the defense shouldn't be focused solely on him. If he can just be efficient then Dinwiddie should repay value tonight. We just have to cross our fingers they continue to give him solid minutes and they don't bring it back down to the mid PHX series level (only 15-20 minutes). I think the icing on the cake is that in the two regular season games against GS, he scored 30 and 39 DK points respectively. Sign me up for Dinwiddie tonight.
Reggie Bullock ($5,400)
Bullock is the first guy that I would consider in the lower range tonight with a drop of $1,000 from Dinwiddie. He is very similar to DFS with three games above 25 DK points and four below 14 DK points in the last series. The volatility could blow up your lineup tonight but I actually like his prospects here. He should see around 30-35 minutes,get 6-10 shots up efficiently and a few peripherals to boot. Bullock gives you the ability to go Luka CPTN/Steph UTIL and not have to punt multiple spots. He might only need to get you 20 DK points and I would be okay with that. I think he is a fine play, but don't expect him to break the slate.
Kevin Looney ($4,400)
I think the rebound king will continue his play in this series and should almost be a lock tonight. He put up 4/22/5 in the closing Game 6 against MEM which was still an outlier game. Even if he can do half of that tonight then he should be optimal. Don't get cute here even if the ownership is through the roof. If Looney starts then play him. If he doesn't start then that might be worth fading. I still think he gets 20 minutes minimum here.
Dwight Powell ($3,400)
Powell finally started to get more minutes at the end of the PHX series and was a big part of the regular season series against GS. I think that should continue tonight which makes me like him over Kleber tonight. The price is quite low and the minutes should be somewhere in the 18-24 range. He doesn't need to do much but he has the height over GS and should fall into plenty of REBs and a few buckets. You won't get much more out of anyone this cheap.
Davis Bertans ($2,400)
I don't like Bertans at all tonight but it is worth noting if GS gets hot shooting they might go to a Luka/Brunson/Bullock/DFS/Bertans lineup and just pray they hit some 3s. I doubt that happens but Bertans should still get in the 5-10 minute range. At this price point some of these guys will be DNP-CDs.
Damion Lee ($1,000)
This might turn into a chalkier play but even if it does I really like him tonight. He lets you get whatever you want, including Luka CPTN and plenty of the high end guys like Steph, Brunson or Klay. He should see 10-15 minutes and even if they aren't efficient it might not matter. He could get you 5 DK points and that might be all you need. What's wild is he actually played 13-20 minutes and scored double digit DK points in all 3 of the regular season games he was available for against DAL. I love him tonight and I think you should too. Finger's crossed his ownership stays low.
Frank Ntilikina ($1,000)
Very similar situation to Lee. He got a 8-12 minutes/game towards the end of the PHX series and actually got 18 minutes in his last game against GS this season. I really just don't like his usage compared to Lee, but if Lee ends up getting 4-5x the ownership of Frank then I think it worth considering the pivot.
Fades (for me):
Maxi Kleber, Otto Porter, Jonathan Kuminga
Thanks for reading and best of luck

NBA Heat vs. Celtics Showdown Preview (Game 1)

The NBA Playoffs have finally hit the Conference Finals so that means it is Showdown Time! This is one of my favorite periods given the game theory nature of Showdown and want to do everything I can to get you guys the information you need to separate yourself from the pack and be unique while also having a shot at 1st place. There are four key things I look for in a player to have the highest probability of being optimal!
1. Price
2. Opponent DvP
3. Recent Minutes/Rotation Time
4. Usage Rate
These four statistics paired together are the best suitors to find a gem. Almost everyone I mention below hits on atleast 2 of these if not all of them! Hopefully this will help you be more successful while building lineups and give you a higher chance of winning the big bucks!
I would also like to note that I write these articles early in the day. It is always beneficial to check @Underdog__NBA for lineup changes. Those changes could have a direct effect on some of my "favorite plays" in the sense that if a cheap guy that was one of my favorites doesn't start, then they might no longer be a favorite play or even a play at all. Check out my Twitter @HeatingUpDFS for any updates on favorite play changes!
If you enjoy all of the content, there are multiple ways to show support! We have a Twitter and Discord Channel that you can join for up to the hour line up discussion and slate overviews! Also be sure to subscribe to our YouTube for our video breakdowns! Click the links below to join/follow!
For player projections throughout the rest of the playoffs, be sure to check out our FREE Projection Sheet! Just click the Premium button below.

Series Overview

This series should be quite defensive with both teams squarely in the top 5 in defensive efficiency this season. Anchored by Butler/Bam and Smart respectively, I think this series could go a number of ways in all facets of the game. I think it comes down to the final possession in multiple games which has me very excited for what is to come. Both teams are 11 games deep into this playoffs run and have had to take down a top 5 players in the league in the process (Heat: Embiid, Celtics: Durant/Giannis). The Celtics feel more battle tested of the two, overcoming a 3-2 deficit against the defending Champions. However, the Heat have had a couple extra days of rest leading into this series. It has given them plenty of time to get healthy. If they get out to an early series lead, I really think this could be detrimental to the Celtics' chances. On the other hand, if the Celtics shoot like they did in that Game 7 against the Bucks then there is an avenue for them to sweep the Heat here. I don't envision that will happen given the Bucks were one of the worst 3 PT defenses in the league this entire season anyways, but the Heat weren't much better. They both have a lock down the paint mentality that could lean in the Celtics favor here. Just looking at the regular season, Boston won the season series 2-1 with only 1 game going over a 204 total score. This series will likely be the polar opposite of the GS vs. DAL series with strong defensive play and the studs separating themselves to decide who heads to the NBA Finals.

Captain Picks

For Showdown slates it is always crucial that you get the CPTN correct or you won't stand a chance at the top prize. Usually the top 0.1-1% of the highest scoring lineups in a SD setting feature the same CPTN with varying UTIL spot choices to round out the lineup. Given the rotations should remain fairly tight, there might only be two roster constructions you can choose tonight. The 1st is a stars and scrubs approach. That is where you take a top 3 option at CPTN, follow it up with 3 more of the top 5 priced options, and round it out with two guys that are extremely cheap in hopes that the stars get 80%+ of the usage and you only need 3-10 DK points from the cheap guys to get you to the top. The 2nd option, which will likely be my personal approach, is a balanced approach. Usually it comes with taking a mid range CPTN option, then multiple high to mid priced options at UTIL and only have to lean on one cheaper option that still has scoring viability. With how much usage the mid range gets from both of these teams, I think this is likely the most efficient approach. The following players feel like the best options to role with at that CPTN spot who also give you a bit of leverage over the field.
Jaylen Brown ($13,800 CPTN)
Brown was extremely consistent in the MIL series in the games he didn't get into foul trouble, scoring 45+ DK points in 3 of the 5 games he fit those parameters. During the regular season series, Brown actually outscored Tatum in 2 of the 3 and you can get him at a significant discount tonight. I actually think they overpriced Tatum who will be the major focus for Miami on defense which could open up things for Brown to thrive. I think he gets a much easier matchup against Strus compared to Butler guarding Tatum. For those reasons, I think Brown returns a much higher value and his ownership at CPTN should give you a major advantage over the field. He might come in underowned in general, not just at CPTN.
Bam Adebayo ($12,600 CPTN)
Bam did not have a good series against PHI but that was more due to his matchup against Embiid. It was never going to be an easy task for him and I think it gets much easier in this one. He will get a banged up Robert Williams and Daniel Theis from the C spot which should be exploitable. I think they go to him early to test out Robert on the defensive end and see if he can handle things. Just from a pricing perspective, Bam is quite cheap from his poor finish to the PHI series. I can't imagine he continues that run of form here and should return to his 35+ DK point floor. He is a guy that can score you DK points in a number of ways and has a lot of things going for him tonight (price, matchup, usage). I think he can have a really solid game and series, so roll Bam out with confidence.
Marcus Smart ($11,400 CPTN)
Smart is just one of those guys that is going to give it his all every single night. With him being this close to getting to the Finals, I think we see his best almost every night. He finished out the MIL series on a high, scoring 39 and 40 DK points in the two final games after his Game 5 blunder. He scored well in the regular season series against MIA as well with 32 and 34 DK points in the final two games. Similar to Bam, Smart can do it all from scoring to picking up peripherals which has me in love with him for this series and game. The matchup is also heavily in his favor against Vincent who might cave under the pressure. Give me all the Smart I can handle tonight.

Utility Picks

Along with all of the CPTN options, the following players look to be a good value tonight for a number of different reasons (pricing, matchup, ownership leverage, etc.)
Jayson Tatum ($12,000)
As crazy as it sounds I really don't like Tatum here. The matchup against Butler is not going to be easy. He will likely be in the 60-80% ownership range and in the regular season series against MIA he only averaged 38 DK points/game across the 3 games. His price is also way higher than any other player which makes it to where you almost have to punt down to a $4,000 or less option. I really don't like having to do that so I will more that likely be way under the field on Tatum tonight.
Jimmy Butler ($10,800)
I think he will hold 80%+ ownership tonight, but it is likely you need it. He is locked in right now and should be a top 3 DK scorer in the game tonight.
Max Strus ($7,000)
Honestly the price on Strus is gross, but that alone should give you a ton of leverage in the ownership department. He scored 43 and 36 DK points in the final two games of the PHI series along with 35 and 37 DK points in the final two games of the regular season series against BOS. He clearly likes this matchup and I am more than willing to say he is a good play tonight even if not many others are willing to plant that flag with me.
PJ Tucker ($5,400)
Similar to Smart, Tucker is a big game player and will give it his all for every minute he is out on the court. He should play north of 30 minutes and even at a low usage I think he can get you what you want. There might be a few cheaper options below him that look better on paper, but Tucker is always live for a big score even if he is just as live to score under 5 DK points. I will take that volatility any day of the week at a low ownership like he will garner tonight.
Derrick White ($5,200)
White will likely see a slight drop in minutes the Robert Williams returning, but at the end of the day he is going to get a sizeable amount of the G minutes and can't be as bad as he was in that close out game against MIL. I don't think he is in a ceiling spot here, but down at these salaries you really are starting to dip into some really questionable plays regardless. I am fine taking a shot at White who will be lower owned and has been apart of one of Boston's most efficient lineups this postseason (Smart/White/Brown/Tatum/Horford).
Grant Williams ($5,000)
I think he will be a bit over owned tonight following his Game 7 heroics. His minutes will likely dip with Robert returning and getting his normal run, but I actually like him a bit more off of the bench. He was honestly better off of the bench in the MIL series and will still get a ton of 3's up. The only qualm I have with him is the Heat will 100% pivot to defend him if he starts to get hot shooting like he did in Game 7. Just remember, in Game's 4-7 he averaged 10 DK points/game. He is always live to get almost no usage and ruin your lineup.
Robert Williams ($4,800)
Williams is one of my favorite plays tonight. He is a high FPPM player when he gets the minutes and Udoka has said Williams will get his normal run tonight. While that might only be ~25 minutes, he can still produce 30+ DK points in that time. I just love his upside and price. The only thing that scares me is the ownership will likely be in the 40-60% range which is quite high. If you can find a low ownership guy to fit in your lineup then Williams is more than fine.
Gabe Vincent ($4,200)
Still no Lowry so Vincent will likely start and get 25-30 minutes. He will be chalk and likely for a good reason. I think if you want leverage, Vincent seems like the easiest guy to pivot off of to do that. However, he is likely to give you a really solid floor and is too cheap for the role he will play tonight. If you want to pivot off of Vincent, Strus, Oladipo and Herro seem like the best moves to go to.
Dewayne Dedmon ($2,000)
There isn't much to say here about Dedmon. He probably won't break 15 minutes and the usage won't be there. If you really want to get 3-4 studs though you might have to consider Dedmon. I think he is a better bet over Theis who might not even play. This is a tough guy to try to tout because I don't think there is any bit of a ceiling here. However, down in this price range he is about the only one guaranteed to get minutes.
Duncan Robinson ($1,000)
He barely got run in the PHI series but being that it is Game 1 that could change. He got run in the regular season series against BOS so you might see him make some appearances in this one as a shooting spark off the bench. My only issue with Robinson is he has atleast 5 guys ahead of him in the pecking order, so a DNP-CD is the likely outcome.
Fades (for me):
Al Horford, Tyler Herro, Victor Oladipo, Payton Pritchard, Daniel Theis
Thanks for reading and best of luck

NBA March 31st Starting Five

The NBA season in full swing and we have another great slate tonight! We have such an exciting season up ahead and plenty of opportunities to win some money! There are four key things I look for in a player to have the highest probability of being optimal!
1. Price
2. Opponent DvP
3. Recent Minutes/Rotation Time
4. Usage Rate
These four statistics paired together are the best suitors to find a gem. Almost everyone I mention below hits on atleast 2 of these if not all of them! Hopefully this will help you be more successful while building lineups and give you a higher chance of winning the big bucks!
I would also like to note that I write these articles early in the day. It is always beneficial to check @FantasyLabsNBA for lineup changes. Those changes could have a direct effect on some of my "favorite plays" in the sense that if a cheap guy that was one of my favorites doesn't start, then they might no longer be a favorite play or even a play at all. Check out my Twitter @HeatingUpDFS for any updates on favorite play changes!
If you enjoy all of the content, there are multiple ways to show support! We have a Twitter and Discord Channel that you can join for up to the hour line up discussion and slate overviews! Also be sure to subscribe to our YouTube for our video breakdowns! Click the links below to join/follow!
For Premium Draftkings Cash/GPP lineups, contest selection, or PrizePick/SuperDraft lineups, be sure to sign-up for NBA Premium! For just $25/month or $10/week, it will provide you with our NBA Clipboard which should be everything you need to dominate this NBA Season! Sign-up today using promo code NBA2021 for 50% off your first month!

PG: Caris LeVert ($5,800)

Smaller slate tonight so there is a limited number of good plays in general. Given LeVert has not gotten enough of a price bump he seems like an absolute lock. He has scored 28+ DK points in 3 straight games and is coming off of a 46 DK point outing. The stars are aligning for LeVert with his minutes, usage and matchup all in a prime spot tonight and he is way too cheap to pass up. Take what the slate is giving us in LeVert and don't look back.
High: Darius Garland ($10,100) or Jrue Holiday ($8,300)
Mid: Mike Conley ($6,000)
Low: Killian Hayes ($4,300)

SG: Malik Monk ($5,500)

Monk has 32+ DK points in 3 straight games and had 43 DK points without Lebron and Davis last game. His price only moved up a little bit and he is in the same situation tonight. Even better, Russ will be defended by Conley which is still a really tough matchup so we could see Monk go even higher than that 43 DK point mark here. They are going to need to score in bunches if they want a shot at beating Utah and that is exactly what they are going to get from Monk.
High: Paul George ($9,400) or Donovan Mitchell ($8,800)
Mid: Jordan Clarkson ($6,200)
Low: Lamar Stevens ($3,500)

SF: Giannis Antetokounmpo ($11,800)

The SF positions tonight leaves a lot to be desired. That really just makes me want to either pay all the way up for Giannis or go all the way down and punt the position. The BKN/MIL game has the highest implied total by nearly 20 whole points so you are going to want to get pieces from it. Why not get the best one when there is plenty of value in other positions? He is coming off of a 75 DK point game and probably has the highest ceiling on the entire slate. He is by far my favorite spend up option tonight and it isn't really close.
High: Kevin Durant ($11,400)
Mid: Seth Curry ($5,000) or De'Andre Hunter ($4,900)
Low: Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot ($3,100) or Patrick Williams ($3,200)

PF: Stanley Johnson ($3,800)

If Bojan Bogdanovic is out then my favorite PF play is Juan Hernangomez. However if Bojan is in then Stanley slots right in nicely. He has scored 23+ DK points in 4 of the last 5 games he has played and scored 31 DK points without Lebron and Davis last game. He is going to have to play a good amount regardless and is just too cheap for the implied ceiling. The matchup is a bit tough but he probably has one of the easier individual matchups of the starters (even if it is still bad). All in all, Stanley might be over owned tonight but for a good reason. He still grades out as a great play.
High: DeMar DeRozan ($8,400)
Mid: Kevin Love ($5,900)
Low: Juan Hernangomez ($3,800)** or Rudy Gay ($3,200)**

C: Andre Drummond ($6,000)

After seeing Nash give Drummond big minutes last game I think it is time I go back to him. He has 28 and 31 minutes in the last two games and put up 30+ DK points in 3 straight. His ownership is likely to be through the roof which is a bit concerning but for good reason. His ceiling is very high and the game environment is too good to pass up. I think the icing on the cake is that Drummond in the last two meetings against MIL has gotten big minutes as well. That is all I need to see to expect 30 DK points minimum from Drummond here.
High: Joel Embiid ($11,500)
Mid: Rudy Gobert ($7,700) or Isaiah Stewart ($5,000)
Low: Brook Lopez ($3,900) or Moses Brown ($3,200)
Thanks for reading, best of luck, and I hope you enjoy the holidays!

NBA March 29th Starting Five

The NBA season in full swing and we have another great slate tonight! We have such an exciting season up ahead and plenty of opportunities to win some money! There are four key things I look for in a player to have the highest probability of being optimal!
1. Price
2. Opponent DvP
3. Recent Minutes/Rotation Time
4. Usage Rate
These four statistics paired together are the best suitors to find a gem. Almost everyone I mention below hits on atleast 2 of these if not all of them! Hopefully this will help you be more successful while building lineups and give you a higher chance of winning the big bucks!
I would also like to note that I write these articles early in the day. It is always beneficial to check @FantasyLabsNBA for lineup changes. Those changes could have a direct effect on some of my "favorite plays" in the sense that if a cheap guy that was one of my favorites doesn't start, then they might no longer be a favorite play or even a play at all. Check out my Twitter @HeatingUpDFS for any updates on favorite play changes!
If you enjoy all of the content, there are multiple ways to show support! We have a Twitter and Discord Channel that you can join for up to the hour line up discussion and slate overviews! Also be sure to subscribe to our YouTube for our video breakdowns! Click the links below to join/follow!
For Premium Draftkings Cash/GPP lineups, contest selection, or PrizePick/SuperDraft lineups, be sure to sign-up for NBA Premium! For just $25/month or $10/week, it will provide you with our NBA Clipboard which should be everything you need to dominate this NBA Season! Sign-up today using promo code NBA2021 for 50% off your first month!

PG: Tomas Satoransky ($4,100)

If they are going to continue to give Satoransky 25+ minutes and the start then I am going to go with him. Especially on a small slate where he is a great value and has both G and F eligibility. He has scored 22 and 24 DK points in the last two games with minimal usage and only a few shots. He finally started to pick in up last game and was doing well with the peripherals. I think unless something opens up then there is a solid chance that Sato comes in as one of the better value plays on the slate. If he doesn't start then completely fade. It likely means they saw enough of Sato and will bring Neto back into the lineup and in that event I would pivot to him at just $3,600
High: Luka Doncic ($11,400) or Russell Westbrook ($8,800)
Mid: Jalen Brunson ($5,900)
Low: Raul Neto ($3,600)** or Killian Hayes ($3,900)

SG: Malik Monk ($5,200)

With no Lebron or Davis tonight Monk is going to be asked to take up a good amount of usage here. Monk has scored 32+ DK points in each of the last two games and those were with Lebron. At this price even with Lebron I think he is a good value but without there is a solid chance he hits his ceiling. The shots, usage and minutes are all there and he has been extremely solid without Lebron since early March. The only downside is the matchup against Dallas is not that good and the pace down nature for the Lakers is a large concern.
High: Zach Lavine ($8,200)
Mid: Deni Avdija ($5,100) or Kentavious Caldwell-Pope ($5,500)
Low: Corey Kispert ($3,900)

SF: Kevin Durant ($11,300)

So there was a lot of back and forth for me on Durant vs. Giannis. I am siding with Durant because Giannis is in a massive pace down spot and he has both Middleton and Jrue to contend with. Durant is really just vying with Kyrie and he has a much Killian Hayes to deal with and he is only good for his defense. Durant should get plenty of usage, big minutes and should be able to destroy in the paint. The Pistons are bottom 10 in points in the paint allowed so Durant should be efficient there and his mid range game is money even against the best. His last game against Detroit was a 79 DK points barrage giving me a lot of confidence for what Durant can do tonight.
High: Cade Cunningham ($8,800)
Mid: Bruce Brown ($5,800)
Low: Reggie Bullock ($4,200) or Pat Connaughton ($4,000)

PF: Marvin Bagley ($5,600)

No Grant for the rest of the season and Bagley is eating up a ton of his minutes. The game itself has the highest implied total on the slate and the numbers for Bagley lately are amazing for the price you are paying. He has 37 DK points in each of the last two games in a similar situation that I don't think is going to change here. All in all, Bagley checks just about every box tonight as long as the game itself holds up to the hype.
High: Kristaps Porzingis ($8,500) or DeMar DeRozan ($8,300)
Mid: Carmelo Anthony ($4,600) or Robert Covington ($4,400)
Low: Wenyen Gabriel ($4,000)

C: Isaiah Hartenstein ($4,700)

I really think the Clippers need to change things up with their approach to defending Gobert because the last few games have not worked. Gobert has been putting Zubac through the ringer and it has led to them rolling out Hartenstein for big minutes. He has 28+ DK points in each of the last 3 meetings against UTA and in each of his last 3 games in general. His price is still fairly tolerable and I think you can get him at solid ownership. I have been going with him over the last few slates so I am going right back to the well with Hartenstein here. Until he fails me or the Clippers choose to funnel him out of the rotation he is a solid play.
High: Rudy Gobert ($7,300)
Mid: Isaiah Stewart ($5,000)
Low: Daniel Gafford ($3,400)
Thanks for reading, best of luck, and I hope you enjoy the holidays!

NBA March 25th Starting Five

The NBA season in full swing and we have another great slate tonight! We have such an exciting season up ahead and plenty of opportunities to win some money! There are four key things I look for in a player to have the highest probability of being optimal!
1. Price
2. Opponent DvP
3. Recent Minutes/Rotation Time
4. Usage Rate
These four statistics paired together are the best suitors to find a gem. Almost everyone I mention below hits on atleast 2 of these if not all of them! Hopefully this will help you be more successful while building lineups and give you a higher chance of winning the big bucks!
I would also like to note that I write these articles early in the day. It is always beneficial to check @FantasyLabsNBA for lineup changes. Those changes could have a direct effect on some of my "favorite plays" in the sense that if a cheap guy that was one of my favorites doesn't start, then they might no longer be a favorite play or even a play at all. Check out my Twitter @HeatingUpDFS for any updates on favorite play changes!
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Update: Was probably 2 minutes away from finishing the article the first time with tons of detail when my laptop bricked. Nothing saved so this is my 2nd go of it and I don't have much time. Sorry if it is brief.

PG: Jordan Poole ($7,800)

Poole has been a beast without Curry. 38+ DK points in 4 straight with crazy high usage. Klay and Wiggins have tougher defensive matchups which should open up Poole to smash in an easier defensive matchup.
High: James Harden ($10,000)
Mid: Kyle Lowry ($6,500) or Patrick Beverley ($4,700)
Low: Kris Dunn ($4,500)

SG: Ben McLemore ($3,700)

This game has everything. A high implied total with both teams terrible on the defensive end. McLemore is getting great usage and minutes off the bench. His price is just way too cheap given he has 25+ DK points in 3 of the last 4 games and both Hart and Winslow are out again.
High: Donovan Mitchell ($9,000)
Mid: N/A
Low: Reggie Bullock ($4,400) or CJ Elleby ($4,200)

SF: Terence Mann ($5,500)

This is definitely a GPP play. The Clips came out and said Reggie, Batum and Morris would be on minutes limits for the rest of the season. There was no mention of Mann so 30+ minutes is a lock. Matchup might suck but the minutes and usage will be there along with the fact that he has been balling lately (35+ DK points in 3 of the last 4 games)
High: Cade Cunningham ($8,700)
Mid: Otto Porter ($4,600) or Evan Fournier ($5,000)
Low: Royce O'Neale ($3,900)

PF: Jae'Sean Tate ($4,200)

He is finally back to getting a decent usage and minutes. The price is a bit low and the game environment should be great. The PF position on DK is also not really that great so taking Tate at lower ownership could be a big winner (or loser given his volatility lately). I just think it is a good spot for him against some end of bench/G-Leaguer's.
High: Kristaps Porzingis ($8,300)
Mid: Tobias Harris ($6,900)
Low: Greg Brown ($3,400)

C: Rudy Gobert ($7,600)

This is definitely a Eubanks vs. Gobert slate, but the price gap isn't large enough for me to come off of Gobert especially given he is playing Charlotte who is terrible against bigs. He has destroyed them in the past and I fully expect him to do the same here at a half decent price tag as well. It is just too prime of a spot for Gobert to not want to go to him tonight.
High: Joel Embiid ($11,200) or Christian Wood ($8,300)
Mid: Drew Eubanks ($6,300)
Low: Dwight Powell ($4,800)
Thanks for reading, best of luck, and I hope you enjoy the holidays!
Heating Up DFS