NBA Morning Thoughts 01.08.19

NBA Morning Thoughts 01.08.19

A surprisingly large eight-game Tuesday NBA DFS slate on our hands, featuring three games with serious blowout potential and a new head coach. Let’s get right to it…

Indiana Pacers @ Cleveland Cavaliers (o/u 208, IND -10.5)

Indiana is 2nd in defensive rating, 25th in pace.

Cleveland is 30th in defensive rating, 29th in pace.

The Pacers head to Cleveland a bit banged up as 10-point road favorites. While the Cavs are one of the worst defensive teams in the NBA I don’t have a ton of interest in Pacers players unless multiple Pacers are scratched. Darren Collison, Cory Joseph, and Myles Turner are questionable.

If Collison and Joseph are scratched we will see Victor Oladipo take more ball-handling responsibilities with Aaron Holiday and Tyreke Evans seeing more minutes. In this scenario I’d be ok targeting any of the three, Holiday is a decent punt. Victor Oladipo has surprisingly only played 1.5 minutes without Joseph and Collison, so there isn’t much historical data to back the thought process.

If either Darren Collison or Cory Joseph sits, then the other would see an appealing minutes bump. They both eat into each other’s minutes and production which keeps their prices low. When one sits, it becomes the perfect opportunity to exploit the other’s down price.

If Myles Turner can’t go Domantas Sabonis would become an elite target at PF. Sabonis is a production monster and would be locked in to around 30 minutes. Another stat worth noting is Sabonis is actually the biggest beneficiary if Collison and/or Joseph were to miss time as Sabonis sees a +16.8% usage jump with them off the floor. The Cavs slow pace seems to limit opposing bigs, but Sabonis is well worth paying up for in this scenario.

If Myles Turner can’t go Kyle O’Quinn becomes a usable punt. Anytime KOQ sees any sort of minutes, he produces. No Turner would ensure him 15-20 minutes and potentially more if the Pacers run away with it.

This is a brutal matchup for the Cavaliers, facing one of the league’s top defensive units in a slow paced game. I have close to zero interest in targeting Cavs players.

With Rodney Hood and David Nwaba out and Patrick McCaw waived the only two Cavaliers I have any interest in are Alec Burks and Jordan Clarkson. Both are cheap scorers who will see strong minutes at low cost. No matter what the matchup is, that has some appeal.