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🏀 Slate Starter: NBA DFS Strategy for DraftKings + FanDuel | Tuesday, 3/30

Eric Lindquist



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Monday was the sort of slate expert late-swappers dream of: Studs that actually played well on a stars-and-scrubs slate, lots of post-lock news that opened up amazing value, and the public failing to react strongly enough to it. Although I couldn’t quite put the pieces together for a takedown, it was still a very profitable night. The week got off to a nice start, so let’s find more NBA DFS picks and strategies to keep this momentum going on DraftKings and FanDuel‘s for Tuesday’s four-game main slate.

Be sure to check out the Slate Starter podcast, featuring yours truly and Rynpak, to get the first look at the slate and make NBA DFS picks for DraftKings and FanDuel!

NBA DFS Slate Starter: Picks & Strategy | March 30

Going Crazy for Clippers

It is nice to have an abbreviated four-game slate on the heels of Monday’s mammoth 11-gamer, although it could be anything but leisurely. Bradley Beal news will likely come well before lock, but Paul George‘s status could realistically be up in the air until well after lock. He was scratched less than half an hour before tip-off of the Clippers’ 10 p.m. EST game and should at the very least carry some sort of questionable injury designation into Tuesday — not that the Clippers care too much about injury reporting, as there have been multiple late-scratches and DFS debacles from them already this year.

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But assuming there will be news in the afternoon that George is indeed out or questionable — or perhaps Kawhi Leonard is rested on the back-to-back just like he was against the Spurs less than a week ago — this could turn into quite the straightforward slate. There are only eight teams to pluck players from, and considering the prices on these Clippers value pieces haven’t had time to react to Monday’s impressive performances, they could be mega-chalk in Tuesday’s tilt against the Magic.

Here is a look at the breakdown from Monday’s beatdown of the Bucks:

Luke Kennard got the surprising start and took full advantage, knocking down five 3-pointers en route to 31.75 DraftKings points at only $3,200. Should any combination of Leonard or George be ruled out, Kennard could very well be the highest-owned player of the day on DraftKings. On FanDuel, where the $3,500 salary threshold isn’t as important as the near-minimum-priced plays on DraftKings for this slate, he could have teammate Terance Mann challenge Kennard for shooting guard ownership considering the more guaranteed role and still-cheap $4,700 salary.

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But the real guy to keep tabs on for Tuesday is Marcus Morris. It has been apparent the Clippers like playing small whenever they get the opportunity lately, and the Magic certainly have no massive interior presence that should cut into that plan. Morris saw a price bump to $5,100 on DraftKings, which the public might shy away from should the Clippers stars play, but even that number won’t make him unattainable. And at $4,500 on FanDuel, he remains a priority regardless of the news.

One last reason the Clippers value should garner crazy ownership today: Even if George or Leonard get ruled in, there is another game locking at 10 p.m. EST to mix-and-match pieces with. That means 50% of the available players on this slate lock at 10 p.m. EST, meaning you can wait to get on the best plays of the slate if George/Leonard sit, or pivot elsewhere if they go over-owned upon news both Clippers stars play. So as always, follow the Newzgod at the @AwesemoNBA Twitter feed and remain ready to react to whatever goes down.

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The Westbrook Encore

It would be hard to blame anyone that saw “35-14-21” and thought it was some obscure way to write today’s date. But if you played NBA DFS on Monday, you probably know that’s the ludicrous triple-double stat line Russell Westbrook put up versus the Pacers. It was one of the true great fantasy performances of all-time, and all eyes will be fixed on Westbrook yet again to see what he does in the aftermath of that outburst (assuming he does not sit on the second half of this back-to-back).

But regardless of Beal’s status on Tuesday, Westbrook has proven his NBA DFS worth time and time again in recent years. From his days on the Thunder with or without Kevin Durant, and to a lesser extent alongside fellow stat hog James Harden, Westbrook has proved to be matchup-proof due to the number of ways he fills up the stat sheet. There are a number of studs on this slate  that could be rostered elsewhere, most notably Nikola Jokic against a 76ers team lacking size in the absence of Joel Embiid and the trade of Tony Bradley.

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But while no one expects a replica 94.5-DraftKings-point explosion out of Westbrook on Tuesday, it’s hard to shy away from his current form. He has eclipsed 58.5 DraftKings points in eight of his past nine games, 70 in three of his past six and now gets an even better matchup than he had Monday in the Hornets. So throw any preconceptions of this being points-chasing out the window; Westbrook is the priority spend on this slate once more.

Final Thoughts for Your NBA DFS Lineups

  • We should all be cautiously optimistic about Aaron Gordon‘s prospects in his second game as a Nugget. He only had an 18.9% usage rate, which is understandable playing alongside Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr. But as the cheapest of the four, there’s some hidden upside as he begins to insert himself into the flow of this offense. Plus, this game against the 76ers should theoretically be much closer than in his debut against the Hawks, where his services were only needed for 21 minutes.
  • Just play Rui Hachimura.

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