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QUICK HITTERS (7/6)
- Today's main slate features 1 game. Nobody is on a back to back.
- As of this writing, the game with the highest and lowest over/under is PHO v MIL at 219 points.
NBA FINALS Showdown Blueprint!
(MIL vs. PHO Game 1)
This section will provide you with my 3 favorite captain plays, my 3 favorite dark horse plays, and game-specific lineup construction strategy!
This section will highlight my 3 favorite Captain (DK) and MVP (FD) plays.
Note: For DK, picking a player as your captain means that they will receive 1.5x bonus on their normal points, but their price will increase by 1.5x as well. For FD, the MVP receives a 2x bonus without any adjustment to their price.
1. Devin Booker ($9,600 DK and $13,500 FD)
Chris Paul is likely going to draw the matchup of Jrue Holiday, so Devin Booker should be able to take advantage of whoever else is guarding him. Teams tend to have a really hard time figuring Booker out in game 1’s, and I expect the same to happen tonight. CP3 and the Suns are going to make a concerted effort to get Booker going early in my opinion; Paul can always be counted on and therefore won’t need to be fed the ball early on, whereas Booker has been inconsistent at times and has been in fewer big moments.
2. Jrue Holiday ($9,200 DK and $13,000 FD)
Jrue Holiday is underpriced on both sites in my opinion. Even if Giannis plays, I expect Jrue to continue to handle a lot of the ball handling duties, simply due to the fact that Giannis will likely not be himself and won’t have the same explosion. In the event that Giannis doesn’t play (which I think is slightly more likely), Jrue should have an excellent game; he’s been really aggressive without Giannis in the lineup, and I don’t see any reason why that would change tonight.
3. Brook Lopez ($7,400 DK and $11,500 FD)
I think Brook Lopez is set up to have a really solid series. He recently had the best game of his career in game 5 of the Hawks series, and I think this matchup is really solid for him; he gets to go up against Ayton, who isn’t going to make him have to sprint out to the 3 point line (b/c he doesn’t shoot threes), and he also won’t have to chase a Trae Young type player out of the pick and roll. On the other end, Lopez should be able to get some open threes, as Ayton will be concerned with defending the paint and might not be able to get out to Brook.
Dark Horse Plays
This section will provide you with some value towards the lower end of the price spectrum. These guys will also be low ownership plays that give you a good chance to differentiate your lineup from the field!
1. Brook Lopez ($7,400 DK and $11,500 FD)
I’m putting Lopez as my number one dark horse play because if you don’t want to play him at the captain/MVP spot, I think you still have to find room for him in your lineup. You can read my write up above to see why I like him so much; also, I don’t see any reason why he would be super highly owned, so he could be a good contrarian play on both sites.
2. Mikal Bridges ($6,000 DK and $9,000 FD) *especially on FD*
I love Mikal on Fanduel tonight, where he’s priced 1.5k and 1k behind Crowder and Payne respectively. The minutes are going to be there, as he’s going to be heavily needed to handle the likes of Khris Middleton and Jrue Holiday on the defensive end. Also, the Bucks are hellbent on not giving up anything in the paint, so I think Bridges should be able to excel from the three point line in this game 1, where the Bucks haven’t been great defensively.
3. Cam Johnson ($2,800 DK and $8,500 FD) *especially on DK*
As I just mentioned with Bridges, the Bucks defensive strategy is to force teams to beat them from the 3 point line and not give up anything easy in the paint. I think with Devin Booker and CP3 coming off of pick and rolls, Cam Johnson (and Bridges, Crowder, etc) will be able to get open looks, and that should allow him to easily return value on DK, where he’s 1k cheaper than Torrey Craig!
NBA FINALS Lineup Construction Strategy
This section will highlight some game-specific trends and adjustments. Remember, the playoffs force teams to beat their opponent 4 TIMES, meaning game 1 looks A LOT different than game 7 most of the time.
Obviously the biggest thing to keep in mind tonight is whether or not Giannis plays. I do think there’s a decent chance that he suits up, just because he was upgraded from Doubtful to Questionable earlier today, and that’s oftentimes a sign that a guy might play. However, even if he does play, he definitely won’t play his normal minutes, and he likely won’t be as productive as he normally is. This should result in Jrue and Khris continuing to have large impacts offensively, and it should also open up similar minutes for Portis and Connaughton.
The other thing that I think could happen in this series is a Brook Lopez break out series. First of all, I think he’ll do very well on Ayton defensively, especially given Ayton can’t hurt him from the three point line. On the offensive end, I think Lopez should be able to get some open threes as a result of Ayton’s size. Brook should also be very solid on the defensive glass, because he won’t be pulled out to the 3 point line by Ayton and will therefore be in a solid rebounding position.
The final thing I think you have to keep in mind tonight is the Bucks’ defensive game plan (at least thus far in the playoffs), which has been to limit teams in the paint and force them to beat you from the 3 point line. I think this should bode really well for guys like Crowder, Cam Johnson, Bridges, and others who will be spotting up on the 3 point line and will likely get open looks as a result of the Bucks over-help at times.
Datasheet for DraftKings and FanDuel Showdown
Note: The DK section of the Datasheet applies to yesterday's classic competition.
Each days newsletter will be posted no later than 2 hours before the main slate of games tips-off, see you tomorrow!