This 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 Karl-Anthony Towns with your first pick, nobody else in your league can have him.
Before looking at specific players who are overrated or underrated on DRAFT tonight, let's examine how easy or difficult all of tonight's teams have been for opposing fantasy players:
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These players have a great chance to outperform their DRAFT projection.
Jamal Murray --SG-- at Philly (DRAFT Projection: 31.2 FP)
The Sixers haven't been an easy matchup for opposing PGs lately, but it's not as though they're in 'must-avoid' territory. Murray's projection puts him just ahead of Elfrid Payton, Trey Burke and Andrew Harrison, and just behind Nicolas Batum -- even though Batum is a game-time decision with Achilles soreness. The Nuggets have been leaning on Murray more than usual without Gary Harris (knee), and he's coming off a terrific 43.7-FP performance on Friday. He's exceeded tonight's projection in five of the past six games, and I'll bet that trend continues vs. the Sixers.
Brook Lopez --C-- at Detroit (DRAFT Projection: 30.4 FP)
The player news for Lopez on DRAFT.com states that he's 'probable' due to back stiffness, but that was actually his status for Saturday's game vs. Memphis. He played 35 minutes in that game and we've heard nothing about his back since then, so he should be ready to go. The false injury tag could scare away owners, as could his lackluster production in Saturday's game (19.0 FP), but I'm happy to double-down on him as my final pick in a 6-team league, or a late-round option in a 10-team league. The Lakers are missing Isaiah Thomas (hip), their highest-usage player, they still don't have Brandon Ingram (groin), and even Julius Randle rolled his ankle during Saturday's game. Lopez should be plenty busy tonight.
Almost any Celtics player, including Marcus Morris (DRAFT Projection: 24.2 FP)
Morris is questionable for tonight's game vs. Phoenix, but coach Brad Stevens said his ankle injury "doesn't sound like a long one," and his absence on Sunday may have been a simple precaution. The Celtics really rely on Morris to create offense, as evidenced by his 23.9% usage rate over the past two weeks, and I expect him to cruise past 25 fantasy points even if he does come off the bench behind Jaylen Brown. His appeal hinges on his availability, of course, so owners creating DRAFT lineups earlier in the day might want to steer clear of him.
The Celtics are rich with opportunity tonight, by virtue of a ridiculously good matchup vs. the Suns. Look once again at the matchup table above -- Phoenix is by far the most lenient team playing tonight, and they're getting destroyed at every single position. Terry Rozier is projected at 34.8 FP tonight...yes, please. Greg Monroe (26.0 FP) as my center in a 10-team league? Absolutely. Jayson Tatum (28.9 FP) and/or Jaylen Brown (27.1 FP) as cheap forwards? Yep. It's worth mentioning that Al Horford (32.2 FP) is also listed under forwards, not centers, and he's another worthwhile mid-range target. I want a lot of exposure to this matchup vs. the Suns.
These players may not live up to their DRAFT projection.
Josh Jackson --SF-- vs. Boston (DRAFT Projection: 37.5 FP)
Jackson is a solid option at forward tonight, especially since there aren't many appealing targets, but 37.5 fantasy points is a lofty goal. He's reached that mark exactly once in the past four weeks and draws a matchup vs. a stingy Celtics defense that just welcomed back pitbull defender Jaylen Brown over the weekend. The continued absence of T.J. Warren (out) and the likely absence of Devin Booker ("very questionable") does help Jackson by inflating his usage, but I'm not convinced he can get over the 35 FP hump.
Marc Gasol --C-- at Minnesota (DRAFT Projection: 37.9 FP)
Gasol hasn't gone for more than 35.5 FP in nearly two weeks. That's due in part to a pair of precautionary DNP-CDs, but even when he's active he's been mediocre lately -- 18 points, five boards and three assists vs. the Lakers on Saturday. Five points, six rebounds, four assists in a crushing loss vs. Philly on Wednesday. If you don't get one of the top-5 centers on the board tonight, there's a steep drop-off to guys like Gasol, Enes Kanter, Brook Lopez and Greg Monroe. Personally, I'd rather gamble on BroLo or at least focus on guards/forwards and take the best center remaining with my final pick. If that happens to be Gasol, so be it.
Jeff Teague --PG-- vs. Memphis (DRAFT Projection: 34.6 FP)
I'm not overreacting to Teague's dud vs. the Sixers this weekend (8.2 FP). The Wolves' starters were destroyed, the reserves played well, and as a result none of the starters fared well. Rather, I'm just not convinced of Teague's upside enough to actively target him in tonight's five-game slate. Terry Rozier, Will Barton, Jamal Murray and Nicolas Batum (if he's cleared to play) all offer safe floors with more explosive potential. I'd rather grab one of them or wait multiple rounds and see what Trey Burke and Andrew Harrison can do as a cheap second guard. Good luck tonight!