Welcome, to the Judge’s Verdict. We have a fascinating 11-game NBA slate tonight, so let’s get down to business.
Here are some of my top tournament plays for tonight’s NBA slate.
Note: The numbers in parenthesis refer to the salaries of that particular player. The first number is the FanDuel (“FD”) salary, while the second number is the DraftKings (“DK”) salary.
We are going to change the format for tonight due to the fact that this slate is pure madness. You have numerous teams resting their best players. Data, advanced analytics, and the normal research techniques that we used all season might not do us a lot of good tonight. So, I am just going to give you my top four tournament plays on the slate. Otherwise known as my Core4.
Kemba Walker – I am not sure people realize just how historically bad Sexton’s defense has been this year. We always talk about attacking Trae Young, but according to advanced analytics, Sexton’s defense is actually worse (Hawks just play at a much faster pace, so opposing PG stats can be a tad misleading). Charlotte miraculously (thanks to two absurd Lamb game winners) is still hanging on for the eighth seed, so they are playing to win tonight – one of the few teams we can say this about. Because of all the value, most people will flock to Russ tonight or even the goat Caruso – but I am not going to overlook a 15% Kemba in a must-win game against one of the worst defenders in the history of basketball.
James Harden – I will eat this piece of chalk tonight. Harden wants the NBA MVP, and the Rockets/OKC game is fascinating with all kinds of playoff seeding implications. Please play one lineup tonight where you use both Russ and Harden – as they could have an epic duel tonight. I know the entire world loves narratives, so Wade is another elite play tonight in his final home game in Miami. I also like Lemon Drop from the Bulls if you want to pivot right off Wade, and my favorite tournament play of the night at SG is Doncic against the Suns. However, with all of that said – if I had one lineup, I am not fading Harden tonight.
Super Mario – This is what I wrote last NBA slate for Super Mario:
I know some will look at Mario’s price (7.4/5.6) on FD as absurd, but it honestly is a fair price tag given his current role on the disgraceful Knicks. He’s the starting PG right now and put up an insane triple-double in 42 minutes last game against Houston (16 pts, 16 rebs, 11 assists). Do I expect this again tonight? No. However, against the Wizards, he is going to put up stats.
Well, against the Wizards, Mario put up 30 pts, 6 rebs, 5 assists, and 2 steals in 35 minutes. And he took a whopping 21 shots. I have no idea why he’s still only 5.7K on DK, and he still has upside at 7.7K on FD. The Knicks are basically only using eight guys right now, so against the Bulls tonight – he is going to put up a huge stat line again. I also love Sampson and Lemon in this same game.
Jemerrio Jones 50%!?!? – I feel like the past 7-10 days, we’ve had numerous minimum priced PFs put up monster games. Lucky for us, we have several more candidates on tonight’s slate. Jones, Theis, Spalding, the corpse of Dirk (narrative game, as probably his final game in Dallas is tonight), and even Yabusele could all have massive games. Jones was phenomenal last game with 16 rebounds in 37 minutes for the Lakers, but he refused to look at the basket and took only 5 shots. He is projected to be the most popular player on the slate with Russ/Harden, so that means in tournaments I will probably look to fade him. I actually am going back to Spalding, who put up 53 fantasy points two games ago before getting abused by Capela last game. I really do think Dirk gets some extended minutes tonight for Dallas, so Phoenix should be thrilled to destroy his rotting corpse-like body. I honestly don’t mind Bender either tonight because he is going to be the one most likely matched up against Dirk for most of the game. So, a Spalding/Bender PF combo in tournaments could be glorious.
Alright, the Judge’s Verdict is in and it is final. Good luck tonight!
If you have any comments/feedback, I’d love to hear from you. You can find me on Twitter @DanielAGreen1 and Instagram @DGCourtroom.