NBA DFS Contrarian Picks: Battle of Against the Grain Centers in Phoenix (December 1)

We’re back with a six-game NBA slate on Friday. Using Stokastic’s NBA DFS Boom/Bust tool, let’s dive into the player pool to discuss the best NBA DFS contrarian picks on DraftKings this evening, which include Nikola Jokic and Seth Curry.

NBA DFS Contrarian Picks — Plays For Today

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Contrarian Stud — Nikola Jokic: Denver Nuggets-Phoenix Suns

It’s always nice to be able to roster Nikola Jokic at low ownership, and he’s the top contrarian stud on DraftKings at $12,400. Coming off another monster performance on Wednesday against the Rockets, Jokic finds himself in another really good spot on Friday, matched up against his former teammate Jusuf Nurkic and the Suns. He enters tonight’s contest averaging 64.8 DraftKings points per game, and Jokic is undisputedly the top projected player on pretty much every slate he is on.

Despite his nightly dominance, the field is struggling to get to Jokic at his expensive $12,400 price tag on DraftKings. As such, only 9.60% of the field is expected to roster him against a 13.10% optimal percentage. As DraftKings continues to progressively price up players, getting to the top-tier studs becomes harder. That certainly applies to Jokic tonight, but he’s about as good of a “spend up to be contrarian piece” as there is.

Contrarian Mid-Tier — Jusuf Nurkic: Denver Nuggets-Phoenix Suns

Speaking of Jokic’s former running mate, Jusuf Nurkic is the top contrarian mid-tier play at $6,900 on DraftKings. He has acclimated himself nicely in his first season with the Suns, coming into tonight’s game averaging 10.9 points, 9.3 rebounds, 4.0 assists, 1.3 blocks and 1.1 steals per game. While he doesn’t have the ball in his hands as much as he did in Portland, Nurkic has found ways to impact the game in other areas en route to averaging 33.2 DraftKings points per game. That number doesn’t stand out at his $6,900 price tag, but Nurkic should have a bigger role tonight with Devin Booker unlikely to play and Bradley Beal still out.

Update: Booker has also been ruled out.

As of this writing, Stokastic’s tools have Nurkic optimal 8.10% of the time this slate plays out on DraftKings. The field isn’t getting to him at this number, however, as only 5.70% of lineups are projected to roster him. While there’s surely some sticker shock based off his $6,900 price tag, that’s a theme throughout the entire slate, with a ton of players overpriced at every position. Although Nurkic’s price tag is high for his median projection, his upside is undeniable and he grades out as one of the top leverage plays on the board.

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Contrarian Value — Seth Curry: Memphis Grizzlies-Dallas Mavericks

With Luka Doncic getting ruled out for personal reasons, the entire Mavericks roster becomes viable on DraftKings. Players like Kyrie Irving and Jaden Hardy are getting a ton of well-deserved love, but Seth Curry stands out as the clear top contrarian play at the flat $3,000. As price tags have risen across the board, teams that aren’t priced correctly due to injury news are starting to become almost impossible to get away from. Such is the case with Dallas tonight, and Curry is a great way to get exposure to the Mavericks without following the masses.

While these numbers could change as we get closer to lock, Stokastic’s tools have Curry optimal a whopping 31.10% of the time this slate plays out on DraftKings. With only 5.40% of the field projected to roster him, Curry is arguably the best contrarian value play there has been all year. Curry doesn’t need to do that much at $3,000 to become viable, and more importantly, he opens up doors to roster construction.

Looking for more NBA DFS advice? You’ve come to the right place. Sign up for Stokastic’s NBA DFS Premium Package for access to player projections, ownership projections and Stokastic’s state-of-the-art NBA DFS simulation tools.

Matthew Belman
Matt Belman graduated from Tulane University with a degree in Consumer Behavior. He has been playing and analyzing DFS full time since 2018. He has qualified for the 2023 DraftKings NBA World Championship (5x), the 2023 DraftKings MLB World Championship (2x), the 2023 FanDuel MLB World Championship (2x) and the 2023 DraftKings NFL World Championship. You can find him on X at @fantasytipsmatt.

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