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Today's Optimizers and Datasheets
(Note: Needs Excel Version 2010 or later)
QUICK HITTERS (6/14)
- Today's main slate features 2 games. Nobody is on a back to back.
- As of this writing, the game with the highest over/under is PHI v ATL at 225.5 points. The game with the lowest over/under is LAC v UTA at 223.5 points.
Welcome to our brand new section for the NBA Playoffs! This section will provide you with a full breakdown (or 'blueprint') of both players and strategies we like for tonight's games. Our goal is for this section to replace our usual 'Need to Know' and 'Core Plays' sections, as there is typically much less injury news in the playoffs and we want to focus in more on matchups and lineup construction!
Tonight's Lineup Construction:
This sub-section will briefly breakdown lineup construction strategies to consider for tonight's slate. Are there high tier must plays? Is there a ton of cheap value? Should you go Stars and Scrubs? Etc.
I think the low-tier is really strong tonight. First of all, I think you’re able to exploit what happened with Solomon Hill in the second half of last game; there’s a good chance that he gets phased out, in which case guys like Snell, Huerter, and Gallinari (all guys in the low-tier) would have potential to get the start and see far more minutes tonight. Snell started the 2nd half for Hill last game but is the site minimum today, so I would like to take a flyer on him tonight. I also could see either Huerter or Gallinari getting the start, in which case I would lock them into my lineup as well. Besides them, I really like Batum in this low-tier; LAC went back to small ball and they’re going to do it again tonight, so Batum is definitely underpriced. Locking in some of these low-tier guys into your lineup (especially Snell at 3k) would allow you to spend up on some guys in this top-tier (you could potentially even get BOTH Kawhi and Embiid into your lineup).
Tier 1 ($8,000+)
Each of the following tiers will provide our top 2-3 value plays (depending on how many games there are) of the night from within the specified price range.
Note: We will be using DraftKings prices for the price-range classifications.
1. Kawhi Leonard ($10,000)
The Clippers have been down 0-2 in both of their first 2 series, and Kawhi has responded quite well both times. He put up 34-5-12 in game 3 on Saturday night, but more importantly he had that look in his eye; he raised his intensity level, and showed that he’s a completely different player with his back against the wall. He’ll come out tonight with the same level of intensity, because going down 3-1 would likely end their playoff run. Also, I don’t expect George to play as well tonight, which means Kawhi will likely have to take over earlier in the game as opposed to later.
2. Donovan Mitchell ($9,000)
Donovan Mitchell has taken 30, 29, and 24 shots in the first three games of this series, so I’ll be shocked if he doesn’t take a similar amount tonight. He’s everything for this UTA offense, and I expect him to have another high usage, high points night in a super important game 4. If Conley plays, I would be a little less excited about Mitchell (unless Conley is on a significant minutes restriction), but I would be surprised if Conley plays tonight anyway. Mitchell has been successful from all 3 levels (3, midrange, basket), and I think that bodes really well for his dfs numbers moving forward.
3. Joel Embiid ($10,500)
The Hawks put a little more pressure on Embiid in game 3, but all it resulted in is more assists for Embiid. He handled the double team really well and was able to pass out of it super effectively, so I could see ATL playing him straight up tonight. Either way, Embiid has proven he can be successful no matter what defense they throw at him, and I think it’s super important that they win this series as quickly as possible, especially because Embiid is battling a partially torn meniscus; if Embiid is able to get a lot of rest between this series and the ECF, he’ll be far more prepared to make a finals run.
Tier 2 ($5,000-$7,900)
1. Seth Curry ($5,100)
Without Danny Green, Curry should see a slight increase in both his minutes and usage tonight. They play similar roles (shooters), so Curry should steal some of those threes that Green gets as a result of Embiid being doubled at the rim. Curry’s locked in for tons of minutes, and I really like his chances of returning value at only 5.1k tonight. The Hawks definitely won’t let Korkmaz get that hot again from 3, but perhaps they’ve forgotten a bit about how lethal Curry can be from 3, which could mean he sees slightly looser coverage tonight.
2. Joe Ingles ($5,000)
Assuming Mike Conley sits again tonight, Ingles is going to get the start and see starter-type minutes. At the absolute bottom end of this mid-tier, you’re getting a guy that has a ceiling potential of 20 and 10, which is a lot better than most guys near his price tag. If Conley plays (and doesn’t have a minutes limit), I would like Ingles less, but I would still feel pretty solid about his floor. He’ll get spot up threes, and he’ll have lots of opportunities to make plays for Gobert off of that high screen and roll. If Mitchell somehow isn’t playing well, he’ll become a focal point of the offense.
3. Ben Simmons ($7,600)
Ben Simmons knows perfectly well how to succeed while Embiid is being doubled; he makes excellent cuts to the hoop, and he gets out in transition before the Hawks have a chance to set up their defense. I like his chances to have another solid game tonight with his ability to get literally every stat in the book. He’ll probably see a slightly higher workload tonight as a result of Green being out, and I think he comes out tonight with tons of intensity, because he knows the importance of finishing this series as quickly as possible.
Tier 3 ($3,000-$4,900)
1. Tony Snell ($3,000)
Tony Snell has been nonexistent in these playoffs so far, but he got the start ahead of Solomon Hill in the second half of game 3, so I could see the same happening tonight. I know he’s been really bad in the minutes that he’s played, but that could easily change tonight, especially if he has the confidence of getting the start; he can hit open threes, and he’s not bad at driving the closeout, so I could actually see him being an x-factor tonight in that starting 5.
2. Nicolas Batum ($4,500)
The Clippers went back to small-ball in game 3, and it went well for them. They’re definitely going to start the same lineup tonight, which means Batum will see 30+ minutes and the start. He’s able to take advantage of the rim protection of Gobert by spotting up at the three point line and aggressively driving the closeout, and he’ll continue to look to do that tonight. At only 4.5k, you’re getting excellent value for Batum tonight.
3. Kevin Huerter ($4,800)
Huerter had a rough game 3 as he got into some early foul trouble, which really limited his ability to get any kind of flow offensively. I think Hill could be phased out of the lineup tonight (he didn’t start the second half in game 3 and he’s played really poorly this series), so Huerter should see more minutes than normal. Before last game, Huerter was showing new developments in his game by the minute, and I think we could continue to see those skills tonight.
NBA PLAYOFF MKF PLAYS OF THE DAY
Seth Curry MORE Three Pointers Made than Furkan Korkmaz (+0.5 Made Threes)
Even though Korkmaz got Danny Green’s minutes last game, it’s possible that PHI does something different tonight. He was far less successful in the second half of game 3, and I could potentially see them going to Hill, Thybulle, or Milton instead of him. Even if Furkan does start, the Hawks won’t let him get off as many threes as he did last game, and Curry could potentially fly under the radar after having a slow game 3.
Kawhi Leonard MORE than 29.5 Points
You probably know this already, but Kawhi Leonard is a different player when his back is up against the wall; he showed it against the Mavs in the first round, and he showed it in game 3 just two nights ago. His back is still up against the wall (as going down 3-1 would likely mean a series loss, especially going back to UTA), so he’s going to come out firing tonight. Additionally, I don’t expect PG to shoot as well, so Kawhi will probably have to take over a little earlier tonight.
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Each days newsletter will be posted no later than 2 hours before the main slate of games tips-off, see you tomorrow!