Fantasy Basketball 2021: Daily Fantasy Advice for Monday's NBA Playoffs

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistMay 24, 2021

Fantasy Basketball 2021: Daily Fantasy Advice for Monday's NBA Playoffs

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    Lynne Sladky/Associated Press

    Two key themes emerged from Game 1 between the Miami Heat and Milwaukee Bucks that could help daily fantasy basketball players for the rest of the series. 

    Miami shot the ball better from three-point range, with 20 shots from downtown compared to five from Milwaukee; and the Bucks earned an edge in the frontcourt matchup, with Brook Lopez finishing with 18 points and eight rebounds.

    Adjustments will be made throughout the series, but those two trends could continue. Miami is expected to shoot better from three because its defense is better on the perimeter and Lopez had a size and width advantage against Bam Adebayo.

    The theme for Monday's second game should be fairly simple. Nikola Jokic, Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum and Michael Porter Jr. all scored over 20 points in Game 1 between the Portland Trail Blazers and Denver Nuggets. 

    Rostering the stars from the Western Conference matchup and the role players from the Eastern clash may be the most profitable strategy for Monday's two-game slate. 

Find Value in Role Players from Bucks and Heat

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    Carlos Osorio/Associated Press

    Miami is set up to win the three-point battle in its series against the Bucks because it has an abundance of shooters who can get hot. 

    Goran Dragic and Duncan Robinson combined for 12 of the team's 20 three-point shots in Game 1, while Kendrick Nunn, Tyler Herro, Jimmy Butler and Trevor Ariza knocked down two each.

    Most of Miami's volume shooters carry salaries around $5,000 in FanDuel's main slate contest for Monday night. They are also aligned at different positions so you do not have to choose between the group. 

    At $5,500, Dragic carries the largest salary of the role players and is listed at point guard. Herro ($5,100) and Nunn ($4,800) are eligible at shooting guard, Robinson ($5,000) is available at small forward, and Ariza ($5,200) is on the power forward list. 

    If you mix and match a few of those players, you should receive decent production while keeping salary open for the big names on the slate. 

    Brook Lopez is a bit more expensive at $5,700, but he still carries value compared to Bam Adebayo and Nikola Jokic at center.

    The 33-year-old tortured the Heat down low in Game 1 and is known to hit an occasional three-pointer or two to pad his stat line. 

    If you combine Lopez with most of Miami's shooting depth in a DFS lineup, it would give you enough salary space to start Lillard, McCollum and Porter, who are expected to shoot at a high volume in the nightcap. 

Trust the Stars from Blazers-Nuggets Game 2

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    Jack Dempsey/Associated Press

    The nightcap presents you with the best opportunity to take advantage of the star players in DFS lineups. 

    Lillard produced 34 points and five three-pointers in Game 1, while Jokic earned 34 points and 16 rebounds. 

    If your strategy is to start as many big names as possible, you should do it from the series that felt less like a street fight at times. Miami and Milwaukee could score an abundance of points in some games, but the defense—at least in Game 1—was much tighter on both ends. 

    If you load Lillard, McCollum, Porter and Jokic into a FanDuel lineup, you would have $24,100 remaining to fill five other positions. 

    That total should allow you to add at least two of Miami's top shooting options. Lopez would not be in play in this scenario because Jokic would be the selected center. 

    You would have to find a low-salary option, like Carmelo Anthony ($4,400) or Aaron Gordon ($5,600), to add into the mix at the two forward positions, but starting the big four from the Blazers-Nuggets series would not force you to struggle for roster options. 

    If you go for Adebayo or Lopez at center, it would open up more salary for other positions, but you would not get the guaranteed high volume of points and rebounds from Jokic. 

    It might be the square play, but with only two games on the slate, you have to trust the high-volume players—like Jokic and Lillard—to give you a chance to place high in DFS contests. 


    Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90.

    Statistics obtained from Basketball Reference.

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