This article is part of our DraftKings NBA series.
We've got another slate that kicks off early at 2:30 p.m. ET with six games on the docket.
Targeted Games are in BOLD. Faded Games are in ITALICS.
UTA vs. MEM (+6) O/U: 221
SAN vs. DEN (-5) O/U: 225.5
WAS vs. PHI (-10.5) O/U: 231.5
LAL vs. OKC (+6) O/U:217.5
ORL vs. TOR (+6.5) O/U: 223
BOS vs. BKN (+9) O/U: 226.5
(odds subject to change)
As we move forward through the seeding games, it's of paramount importance to know what's at stake for the 22 teams in the bubble. As we saw on Tuesday with Milwaukee, elite teams with nothing to gain or prove are beginning to sit their marquee stars. While it's critical to keep your eyes on the wire to learn as much as you can, your safest roster move is to focus on teams that have something at stake. When we have matchups where only one team needs to make a statement, the opposing team may very well lay down their arms, especially if there's no motive to compete. I highlighted the Jazz-Grizzlies game for one obvious reason – the Grizzlies need to keep winning. The Jazz also need to get their house in order, as their 1-2 record in Orlando leaves a lot to be desired. I'm not going to use these scenarios as a tried and true method of selecting players, but it's useful when deciding between two players with similar metrics.
INJURY SITUATIONS TO MONITOR
Caris LeVert (thigh) - QUESTIONABLE
It was relatively simple to figure out who would benefit from LeVert's absence on Tuesday. Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot started and continued his excellent play in the bubble. If LeVert sits, he's still decently priced at $5,200 and looks to be an excellent (and probably popular) value play.
Jaren Jackson, (knee) - OUT FOR SEASON
This is a huge blow for the Grizzlies and very unfortunate for Jackson, who was enjoying an excellent campaign in the bubble. At least for Wednesday, Brandon Clarke ($4,600) should be taking Jackson's place in the starting five, and I imagine that Kyle Anderson ($4,300) will shoulder an expanded role as well.
Dennis Schroder (personal) -OUT
Schroder has left the bubble to be with his family as they welcome their second child, so he'll have to quarantine before returning to Orlando. Both Luguentz Dort ($3,200) and Hamidou Diallo ($3,100) are standout value plays in this scenario, but it's Dort who's seen the most minutes in Orlando, and if I had to dig this deep for a candidate, Dort is a safer bet overall.
Jamal Murray (hamstring) -QUESTIONABLE
Will Barton (knee) - OUT
Gary Harris (hip) - OUT
The injury quagmire in Denver continues. Fans and critics alike have had issues with how the Nuggets are utilizing Michael Porter Jr., ($6,200), but his 27/12 double-double over 44 minutes goes a long way to deciding matters for DFS players. The debate between Monte Morris ($5,100) and Torrey Craig seems settled as well, although you'd need to wait on Murray's status before making this move.
I'm going to continue what I've been saying about the Lakers, despite Anthony Davis' huge 42-point game on Monday. LeBron James has given us every indication that his output isn't going to beat value as long as he is above 10k, and though I have no doubt that Davis can blow up for 74 points on any given night, I think the probability of this goes down with every passing game. One exception might be their tangle against the Rockets on Thursday where there's a pride element involved, but I hold firm to my belief that the optimal lineup won't have Davis in it.
Nikola Jokic, DEN ($9,700) @ SA
The biggest knock on Jokic earlier in the season was usage, as you rarely saw the standout center play more than 30 minutes per game. He's averaged 32.5 minutes over two games in the bubble, and I'm encouraged by scores of 53 and 66 DKFP as well. The Spurs are also rolling with Jakob Poeltl among a host of other big men to replace LaMarcus Aldridge, and with all the maladies in Denver's lineup, Jokic is the obvious offensive and defensive workhorse for Wednesday's matchup.
Also consider: Joel Embiid, PHI ($10,300) @ WAS
EXPECTED CHALK AND OTHER TARGETS
Ja Morant, MEM ($8,200) @ UTA
Jonas Valanciunas, MEM ($7,400) @ UTA
I stacked these two together because they will decide whether or not the Grizzlies make the playoffs now that Jaren Jackson is done for the year. Morant will need to do more offensively and find guys like Valancuinas more often, but I think both of them will rise to the occasion. I especially think Valancuinas' usage will get a nice boost moving forward.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, OKC ($6,700) @ LAL
SGA averaged 38 DKFP over two games against the Lakers this season, and we're due to see him log 3-5 more minutes per game with Dennis Schroder out. The Lakers boast one of the league's best defenses, but the losses of Rajon Rondo and Avery Bradley have had a negative impact on their perimeter defense.
Marcus Smart, BOS ($6,500) vs. BKN
Reports say that Kemba Walker is going to rest in Wednesday's game, and it appears to be official as of late Tuesday evening. A Walker absence results in the greenest of green lights for Smart, who will slide into the point guard slot. I would expect Jaylen Brown ($6,900) to have a good night playing off the ball as well, and have no problem with stacking them, although I have to give a nod to Smart as the higher producer.
Also consider: Aaron Gordon, ORL ($7,200) vs. TOR
Refer back to the injury section for the primary value selections on this slate.
Mike Conley, UTA ($5,800) vs. MEM
I am not ready to give up on the Jazz, and Conley has turned out to have the most reliable floor of the group over three games. He put up a bubble-high 18 shots against the Lakers on Monday and his 38.5 DKFP total was good enough for over 6x value. Even though he's restricted to PG only on DraftKings, I still think you can find a spot for him in many builds with only one elite.
Dillon Brooks, MEM ($5,200) @ UTA
I see myself stacking as many as four Grizzlies in a few GPP lineups, and Brooks will be one of the guys that fill up the Morant/Jonas/Clarke build. With the radical changes happening in the wake of Jaren Jackson's injury, there's a potential jackpot if you hit the guy with the boost in usage, and it's going to come down to how the Grizzlies choose to implement their offense. If you think the offense will flow out of Morant, then I like Brooks. If you think Valancinas can hold his own against Rudy Gobert, I'd go with Clarke.
In conclusion, I should reiterate that the mentions in the injury sections will be key in finding value on the slate. I also should mention that I completely avoided Toronto, but it was mostly unintentional. I still think Pascal Siakam ($8,800) and Kyle Lowry ($8,400) work, but they come at a high price compared to other value you can find at their positions.
The best way to keep tabs on your lineups is by coming back our way, and our Advanced Lineups tool is a great way to get the latest information. Enjoy!