The Academy Awards can try to steal basketball's thunder, but Sunday belongs to the NBA now.
With start times ranging from 1 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. ET, daily gamers can choose from several time frames best suited to attack the competition. Not to leave anyone out, this DraftKings lineup includes all nine games from start to finish.
And the Oscar for Best Lineup goes to...
|DraftKings Lineup for Sunday, Feb. 22|
|PG||Russell Westbrook, OKC||vs. DEN||$10,600|
|SG||Gerald Henderson, CHA||@ DAL||$5,600|
|SF||Wilson Chandler, DEN||@ OKC||$5,700|
|PF||Serge Ibaka, OKC||vs. DEN||$6,600|
|C||Nikola Vucevic, ORL||vs. PHI||$8,400|
|G||J.R. Smith, CLE||@ NY||$4,800|
|F||Ed Davis, LAL||vs. BOS||$5,200|
|UTIL||Isaiah Canaan, PHI||@ ORL||$3,000|
|Prices via DraftKings, $100 under budget|
PG Isaiah Canaan, Philadelphia 76ers ($3,000)
Anybody running the Philadelphia 76ers' frenetic offense becomes a huge fantasy asset, and Isaiah Canaan is next in line to make his team debut at the minimum cost.
Philadelphia plays at the sixth-fastest pace, often operating an uptempo offense under a deficit. Its style works wonders for the point guard, as apparent by Michael Carter-Williams' massive stat-stuffing before getting dealt to the Milwaukee Bucks.
Before getting dealt, Carter-Williams amassed an NBA-high 100.5 touches per game. Through just four games, Tim Fraizer stepped in to rank sixth with 90 touches, placing him ahead of superstar point guards such as Damian Lillard, Russell Westbrook and Stephen Curry.
Based on what general manager Sam Hinkie told CSNPhilly.com's John Finger, Canaan will likely slide into prominent minutes upon arriving from the Houston Rockets.
I suspect he’ll play quite well. I don’t want to oversell him after trading our starting point guard. I don’t want to put too much pressure on him. He’s an interesting prospect and he’s anything but a throw-in. He’s a player we chased in the draft with a similar zeal we had in chasing other players. He’s someone we have high hopes for.
Give him a shot for $3,000, as a modest 20-25 DraftKings points turns into a major score.
SG J.R. Smith, New York Knicks ($4,800)
Tabbing J.R. Smith for his return to Madison Square Garden isn't a "revenge game" pick. It has much more to do with the New York Knicks stinking at basketball.
For better or for worse, Smith will shoot the ball, even if Carmelo Anthony often preferred otherwise.
Since joining the Cleveland Cavaliers, he has embraced the role of spot-up shooter camped behind the arc, attempting an absurd 7.6 three-pointers per game since the trade. Only Stephen Curry hoists up more deep balls per contest throughout the season.
That makes the Knicks Smith's perfect victim, as they're terrible guarding the perimeter. They allow a league-worst 39.0 three-point percentage, also surrendering the highest opposing rates from 20-24 feet and 25-29 feet.
Gamers who roll with the polarizing shooting guard will end the day celebrating like this.
SF Wilson Chandler, Denver Nuggets ($5,700)
When in doubt, Wilson Chandler is always there. He's the solid comedy that never gets old after multiple viewings, even if it was never incredible the first time.
During the Denver Nuggets' first game back from the break, Chandler took an uncharacteristic 20 shots, 12 from behind the arc. That produced an inefficient 19 points, yet nobody will complain about his 30.5 DraftKings point tally.
Six small forwards on Sunday average more fantasy scoring than Chandler (26.2 points per game). Four of them are out or questionable. James costs a pretty penny, and Giannis Antetokounmpo gets an Atlanta Hawks defense that yields the sixth-least DK points to small forwards.
The Nuggets and Oklahoma City Thunder both rank in the top 10 in pace, which led to Chandler tallying a 23-point outing on Feb. 9's 124-114 loss. He gets the job done at a position derailed by injuries.
PF Ed Davis, Los Angeles Lakers ($5,200)
Jordan Hill's return from a five-game absence didn't steamroll Ed Davis' soaring stock; both big men recorded double-doubles off the bench against the Brooklyn Nets on Friday night. The question remains why Byron Scott wouldn't start a 25-year-old with a 58.9 field-goal percentage and 7.5 rebounds per game through 24.0 minutes.
Oh well, he'll just have to make the best of what he's given, which has proven enough. He's averaging 29.5 DraftKings points over the past 10 games, heating up during a bitterly cold February.
|Ed Davis: February Averages|
The Boston Celtics place No. 29 in DK points allowed to power forwards, and the identically prized Carlos Boozer was a healthy scratch on Friday night. While the Los Angeles Lakers possess several moving parts, Davis has the most upside if given the playing time he deserves.
C Nikola Vucevic, Orlando Magic ($8,400)
Center typically lends itself well to discounts, yet Nikola Vucevic is the recommended play despite costing more than anyone else at the position.
Already averaging a double-double (19.6 points, 11.3 rebounds), the All-Star snub will have little trouble notching another against the 76ers, whom he scorched for 19 points and 17 boards when they last met. Only the Dallas Mavericks relinquish more rebounds per game. Per 82games.com, centers contribute 15.2 of Philly's 45.9 boards given up while also offering 2.9 blocks.
|Centers vs. Philadelphia 76ers|
|82games.com; *Player Efficiency Rating|
An otherwise dreadful display between two Eastern Conference doldrums will transform into a fantasy delight with 40-plus DraftKings points from the stud center.
All advanced stats courtesy of NBA.com unless otherwise noted.