It was a pretty chaotic slate last night. The Warriors were an important spot to get right, as both Draymond Green and Stephen Curry were questionable at lock. It was bit surprising to see both ruled in after, and it was even more surprising to see Green then ruled out two minutes before the game was scheduled to start. Jalen Brunson was also ruled out two minutes prior to lock, with no prior warning.
Tonight there is an eight-game slate with some decent value. De’Aaron Fox is out for the Kings. Jusuf Nurkic is out for the Trail Blazers. Tre Jones and Jeremy Sochan will join Devin Vassell and Romeo Langford on the Spurs sideline. Rudy Gobert, Joel Embiid and Tyrese Haliburton, among others, are questionable.
Be sure to pay attention to news and check out the Stokastic Deeper Dive and Live Before Lock shows to hear great analysis of how the news changes the slate. And as always, Stokastic’s NBA DFS projections and Boom/Bust Tool are great resources to help make DraftKings lineups that project well and offer some leverage points on the field.
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NBA DFS Picks Leverage & Optimizer Plays | Feb. 3
Joel Embiid ($11,300) has the highest projection on the slate, in a game in which the 76ers have the highest implied team total on the slate against the Spurs. Embiid is projected for 17% ownership with a 28% chance of hitting his boom score (5x plus 10) and a 13% chance of being in the optimal lineup, according to the Stokastic simulations.
Domantas Sabonis ($10,100) sees just a slight bump in usage and fantasy points per minute with Fox out. Facing his former team, the Pacers, Sabonis has the second-highest projection on the slate. He’s projected for 25% ownership, with a 35% chance of hitting his boom score and a 20% chance of being optimal.
James Harden ($9,600) has a nice leverage score, as he’s projected for just 7% ownership with a 15% chance of hitting his boom score and a 10% chance of being optimal. This is assuming Embiid plays. If Embiid sits, Harden will become a priority, though his ownership will rise as well.
Josh Richardson ($4,800) has played 254 minutes this season without Jones, Sochan, or Vassell on the floor, and has scored four more fantasy points than usual per 36 minutes. Richardson is projected for 22% ownership with a 20% chance of booming and a 15% chance of being optimal.
Malik Monk ($4,800) sees the biggest usage bump of anyone on the Kings with Fox out and should see increased minutes as well. Monk is projected for 20% ownership with a 19% chance of hitting his boom score and a 15% chance of being optimal.
Rudy Gobert ($6,800) currently has the best leverage score on the entire slate. He is projected for just 7% ownership with a 25% chance of booming and 14% chance of being optimal. If Gobert sits, Naz Reid is only $4,800 and in a nice matchup with the Magic.
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Davion Mitchell ($3,000) is currently the top point-per-dollar play on the slate. He is likely to get the start with Fox out and has a wide range of outcomes. He is projected for 27% ownership with a 19% chance of booming and a 16% chance of being optimal.
Drew Eubanks ($3,800) should get the start with Nurkic out and will make a solid value play. He is projected for 15% ownership with a 19% chance of booming and a 10% chance of being optimal.
Aaron Nesmith ($3,600) and Jalen Suggs ($3,600) have nearly identical projections. Nesmith is projected for 26% ownership with a 17% chance of booming and an 18% chance of being optimal. Suggs is projected for 16% ownership with an 18% chance of booming and a 15% chance of being optimal.
These are just some of the top plays of the slate in terms of projection, value and leverage. Things can change in a hurry on an NBA slate, though, so remember to track the news throughout the day and take advantage of potential late-swap opportunities.