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DRAFT NBA Strategy: Wednesday

by Spencer Limbach
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

This new column covers daily rankings and strategy for Draft.com's DFS games. If you aren’t familiar with DRAFT, it’s an innovative DFS game with a live draft feature -- instead of building within a salary cap, you're participating in snake drafts that typically last 2-5 minutes. The scoring system is identical to FanDuel, and anyone you draft is yours alone -- if you take LeBron James with your first pick, nobody else in your league can have him.

 

 

You can find more information at Draft.com or quickly join a contest from anywhere after downloading the app!

 

 

Below, I will highlight several players who are projected too high/low on DRAFT’s default rankings. This should provide insight to potential values and avoidable land mines for your squad. We will then parse through some game theory and overall strategy for tonight’s DRAFT slate.

 

 

Best of luck and happy drafting!

 

 

Editor’s Note: Compete in a live snake draft right now! Drafts take as little as 2 minutes to complete and last just one night. For a limited time, DRAFT is giving Rotoworld readers a FREE entry into a real money draft and a Money-Back Guarantee up to $100! Here's the link

 

 

 

UNDERRATED PLAYERS

 

These players have a great chance to outperform their DRAFT projection.

 

Kyle Kuzma – F – LA Lakers (DRAFT Projection: 25.6 FP)

 

This situation is dependent on the status of Brandon Ingram – who is currently listed as questionable. If Ingram misses another game, Kuzma will have a clear path to 36-40 minutes. That would surely be enough to enhance his floor/ceiling projection well beyond this 25.6 FP mark. In fact, Kuzma is averaging a strong 37 FPPG over his past four games, and that wouldn’t be out of the question with a confident matchup vs Dallas. I wouldn’t mind listing him around 35 FP, putting him as the sixth or seventh best forward on DRAFT.

 

 

Harrison Barnes – F – Dallas (DRAFT Projection: 31.4 FP)

 

I’m expecting Barnes to beat this 31.4 FP projection tonight. Dallas has injury concerns in the frontcourt (Powell & Noel questionable), meaning Barnes may need to fill-in at power forward. He’ll stand to benefit either way, facing a Lakers team that ranks second in pace and 25th vs opposing frontcourt players. I am confident Barnes can exceed this projection, viewing him as a more solidified forward option than the similarly-listed likes of JaMychal Green (more on him later), Taj Gibson, and others.

 

 

Robert Covington – F – Philadelphia (DRAFT Projection: 26.5 FP)

 

I’m putting Robert Covington one notch under Harrison Barnes in the forward rankings, making him viable in drafts of six people or more. Covington has beaten this projection in three of his past four games, also notching 30 or more fantasy points in eight of his past 11. The matchup looks good too, facing a Knicks team that ranks 28th in defensive efficiency vs opposing small forwards. In fact, Covington totaled 32 FP in 31 minutes in his last meeting vs NYK (3/15), and that’s a realistic expectation tonight.

 

 

 

OVERRATED PLAYERS

 

These players may not live up to their DRAFT projection.

 

Elfrid Payton – G – Phoenix (DRAFT Projection: 30.5 FP)

 

I just don’t trust Elfrid Payton’s minutes at this stage in the season, and you shouldn’t either. Even with Devin Booker and TJ Warren out of the lineup (both doubtful tonight), he has posted fantasy performances of 13, 6, and 8 FP. A 43 FP effort at Orlando last Saturday serves as the lone outlier. Simply put, he’s not worth the risk tonight. This current 30.5 FP projection puts him in the mix for drafts of eight or more people, but I’m not taking the bait.

 

 

JaMychal Green – F – Memphis (DRAFT Projection: 31.6 FP)

 

It’s not that I’m avoiding JaMychal Green on DRAFT tonight, I just don’t believe his 31.6 FP projection comes with much confidence. Sure, he’s seeing plenty of minutes, but his efficiency has really sputtered over the past few weeks. He has only surpassed this 31.6 FP projection in two of his past six games. Each of those performances came against fast-paced teams with shaky defenses (BKN & LAL). Tonight’s draw vs Portland doesn’t fit the bill, as the Blazers rank 19th in pace and 16th vs power forwards (fourth in team defensive efficiency). I’ll take Harrison Barnes, Joe Ingles, Robert Covington, or Al-Farouq Aminu over JaMychal Green tonight.

 

 

 

OVERALL STRATEGY

 

The Center position is deep. You are splitting hairs between Karl-Anthony Towns, Joel Embiid, Nikola Vucevic, Dwight Howard, and DeAndre Jordan – listed in order of preference. Even Rudy Gobert serves as a fine fallback option in six-person leagues. In leagues with eight or ten people, I’ll prioritize the top five for my lineups. If you’re league is six people or smaller, you can afford to wait until the later rounds. It seems that Towns and Embiid are going early, so I like to wait for Vucevic later on. He’s in a competitive matchup against a bad Brooklyn defense while playing up in pace.

 

 

C.J. McCollum as the top overall guard. I’m boosting McCollum ahead of Lou Williams, Ben Simmons, and Lonzo Ball at the guard position. Granted, all four of these players have very similar projections, but McCollum has the best floor/ceiling combination in my opinion. Damian Lillard will not play tonight, meaning McCollum will look to run the show against a Memphis team that ranks 28th vs opposing backcourts in the last ten games.

 

 

Aaron Gordon as the third ranked forward. I’ll push Aaron Gordon ahead of Josh Jackson and Tobias Harris at the forward positon. He follows the same rationale listed earlier with teammate Nikola Vuevic – playing up in pace against a Brooklyn team that ranks 27th vs power forwards and 25th in rebound rate. This is a competitive, high-scoring matchup that could really unleash Gordon’s upside. Perhaps we’ll see something close to his beautiful 63 FP breakout vs Phoenix on Saturday?

Spencer Limbach
Spencer Limbach is a multi-sport daily fantasy specialist for Rotoworld. He can be found on twitter @Spencer_JL.