The value picks & the studs? NBA Draftstars Friday Slate Preview

The value picks & the studs? NBA Draftstars Friday Slate Preview

We’re late in the NBA regular season so things are getting weird with sides already clinched for playoffs and others out of the race. Players are being rested, others are finding form after injury.

All that makes for some enticing options in Friday’s seven-game NBA Draftstars $15,000 slate, so we’ve assessed the value picks and the studs, plus those to fade.

LAST GAME LESSONS

Celtics guard Jayson Tatum (SF|PF $16,880) was among the best in Thursday’s slate with 47.5 DS points, although it’ll be tough to back up against the 76ers on Friday.

Nuggets center Nikola Jokic (C $24,780) top scored in Wednesday’s slate, as he does, with 73.25 DS points, but he cost $24k, yet was still owned by 8% of coaches. Jokic had 41 points with 17 rebounds in a loss to the Spurs.

Raptors big man Pascal Siakam (PF|C $18,530) had the fourth highest score with 62.25 DS points for only 3% coaches, with 31 points, 13 rebounds and six assists.

In Monday’s slate, Spurs guard Tre Jones (PG $8,520) had the highest ownership at 71% given his low price and starting role, returning an excellent 40.25 DS points, with 14 points and 10 assists.

Minnesota’s Anthony Edwards (SG|SF $14,180) attracted 44% ownership on Monday, a lot for someone priced at $14k, delivering 52.5 DS points.

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Spurs guard Tre Jones had the highest ownership at 71% given his low price and starting role, returning an excellent 40.25 DS points, with 14 points and 10 assists.

INJURY NEWS

The Bucks-Celtics game will be important to deciding the seeds in the east, but Giannis Antetokounmpo (PF|SF $20,980) is listed as probable with a knee issue, which will have trickle-on effects either way. Bucks guard Grayson Allen (SG|SF $7,330) is doubtful with left hip soreness.

If Antetokounmpo misses, it’ll increase scoring opportunities for the likes of Khris Middleton (SG|SF $13,440), Jrue Holiday (PG $15,620) and Bobby Portis (C $11,350).

The struggling Magic have a number of players out, with forward Franz Wagner (SF|PF $9,740) joining them with an ankle problem.

Toronto’s OG Anunoby (SF|SG $11,720) is questionable with a thigh issue against the 76ers, while Pelicans center Jonas Valanciunas (C $14,670) is in the same category due to an ankle problem.

Minnesota guard Malik Beasley (SG $7,410) is probable despite an ankle worry, while their opponents San Antonio have clinched a play-in spot. Spurs point guard Dejounte Murray (PG $18,330) will again sit out due to an illness which has impacted him physically, which will assist Jones (PG $8,520) who was popular earlier this week.

The Grizzlies have clinched the second seed thus little to play for against the Nuggets, so Ja Morant (PG $16,780) will remain out with his knee problem, although he’s listed as a game-time decision. Dillon Brooks (SG $11,640) is questionable.

Stephen Curry (PG $16,600) remains sidelined for the Warriors so Jonathan Kuminga (PF $6,000) and Andrew Wiggins (SF $11,560) will likely stay popular for their game against the eliminated Lakers, who have listed LeBron James (SF|PG $20,970), Anthony Davis (C $16,890) and Russell Westbrook (PG $14,430) as all questionable with ankle, foot and shoulder worries respectively.

If two or more of those three are out for LA, it’s worth considering Austin Reaves (PG $6,540) as a value pick.

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VALUE PICKS

Bucks center Brook Lopez (C $8,670) has missed a lot of this season due to injury but he’s starting to find his groove since returning in mid-March. Lopez scored a season high 46.75 DS points fueled by 28 points and seven rebounds as Milwaukee’s starting center.

Golden State pair Kuminga (PF $6,000) and Nemanja Bjelica (PF|C $7,210) were among the best value picks in Monday’s slate with scores of 33.75 and 49 DS points. Both got 30 minutes off the bench, with the latter getting more time with Kevin Looney struggling.

Orlando’s Ignas Brazdeikis (SF|PF $9,680) will have a more influential role, while New Orleans forward Jaxson Hayes (C|PF $9,050) may do well again if Valanciunas is missing.

Consider Portland’s Greg Brown (PF $8,560) whose three-game average is 25.7 DS points, up from a season average of 11, with the Trail Blazers having sat a lot of key players with their season over.

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Consider Portland’s Greg Brown whose three-game average is 25.7 DS points, with the Trail Blazers having sat a lot of key players with their season over.

PREMO STUDS & FADES

Very rarely does the slate winner pick either Jokic (C $24,780) or Embiid (C $24,060) given their inflated prices. Monday’s slate winner had Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns (C $17,730) who looms large with a season average of 46.6 DS points and three-game average of 50.8.

Siakam (PF|C $18,530) is around a similar price and had a good game earlier this week, but may struggle to reproduce that impact against a determined 76ers line-up with plenty at stake.

Monitor Giannis’ availability, as Holiday (PG $15,620) does feel under-priced, given he’s not dipped below 40 DS points in their past six games.

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