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AP NBA Game Theory Decisions 3/17

“Live Blog” today – Check back throughout the day for updates!

CORE 5 – Evening

PG- Chris Paul, PG, 6,700  [Core Play]

SG- Kris Dunn, PG/SG, 5,400 [GPP Value]

SF-  Bogdan Bogdanovic, SG/SF, 4,800 [GPP Value]


C- Karl Anthony Towns, C, 10,000 [Core Play]

G- Tyus Jones, PG, 4,700 [Core Play]

This core leaves you with 6,133 left per position. Be mindful with roster construction; if Harden is in fact ruled out, Chris Paul and Eric Gordon would become locks IMO. We most likely won’t get this news until after the first games lock up.


*Game Notes*

CHI/SAC -6.5, 231- Hutchison OUT

Kings are still fighting in the West but pretty much need to win every single game from here on out. My only issue with the Kings is they have a deep rotation.

[Solid to Elite GPP Value] Bogdan Bogdanovic, SG/SF, 4,800 -> Bogdan hasn’t had a good game in quite some time. Simply put, “he is due”.

[Elite GPP] Buddy Hield, SG/SF, 7,000 -> This is the type of game where Hield will be chucking. If he gets hot, he could put up a big number.

Fox -> I’m guessing he will be chalk tonight. He makes for an interesting GPP fade given his low floor. He has been consistent lately, but its not like he has absolutely been smashing value.

[Elite GPP] Kris Dunn, PG/SG, 5,400 -> Most will be looking at Zach LaVine, who is obviously a solid play. However, Dunn will surely go overlooked tonight. He started off on fire against LAC and then picked up multiple quick fouls to start the 2nd half. It was all down hill from that point.

[Solid] Lauri Markkanen, PF/C, 7,300 -> Lauri hasn’t flashed his upside in quite some time. His price has come way down since its highs. He is in play tonight.


ATL/ORL -7.5, 225- Plumlee, Mozgov OUT

Hawks are on the back end of a b2b. I’m slightly concerned with their minutes, it wouldn’t surprise me at all to see someone like Trae Young held back just a bit (maybe 26-30 minutes). A match up against the Hawks is generally intriguing; however, the Magic can be a tough team to trust. They always seem to get off to a hot start and then completely fade in the fourth. This is a spot I’m going to limit exposure on this slate.


MIN/HOU -7.5, 225- Covington, Deng, Teague OUT, Rose Q, CP3 IN, Harden Q

Main thing to watch here is Harden’s status. . . I really wonder if the ‘neck strain’ is just a good excuse to give him some rest. Rockets should have no problem winning this game with Harden sitting out. This situation makes CP3 very intriguing given his cheap price tag. If Harden ends up sitting and you don’t have CP3, your line up probably has zero chance.

[Core] Karl Anthony Towns, C, 10,000 – Towns has been on an absolute tear recently. With all of these injuries, the entire offense is basically flowing through him. He’s an elite play on this four game slate.

[Core] Tyus Jones, PG, 4,700 – Teague has already been ruled out and Rose is questionable. I’m locking Tyus in as a core play.

[Elite] Andrew Wiggins, SG/SF, 5,500 -> Wiggins price is insanely low & if Rose gets ruled out, he should see big minutes tonight.

[Core/TBD] Chris Paul, PG, 6,700 – As I said above, if Harden is ruled out, I’m locking CP3 in. If we don’t get news prior to LOCK, I’m going to lock him in. If news drops that Harden will play, we can pivot off CP3 and Harden would become an intriguing play. However, I still think CP3 is in play given his cheap price tag.

[TBD] Eric Gordon, SG/SF, 5,300 -> if Harden is ruled out, I’m going to make sure I lock him into my builds.


BKN/LAC -6, 232- Napier Q, Crabbe OUT

If you are familiar with my writeups, you know my frustrations with both of these teams and their fairly unpredictable rotations.

Montrezl Harrell, PF/C, 6,600 [GPP]- Harrell has been on fire lately, he is an intriguing GPP play against the Nets. However, Lauri gives us a much higher MINUTES floor. Get up to Lauri if you can.

Other solid plays-> Pat Bev, Zubac (GPP), Jarrett Allen (solid),  D Russ (GPP), Lou Williams (GPP)




11:36 Update- *Early Slate Core* 

PG – Goran Dragic (GPP/Leverage)

SG – Reggie Jackson (GPP/Leverage)

SF – Giannis Antetokounmpo (Core Lock)

PF – Kelly Olynyk (GPP Core)

C – Marc Gasol (Core Lock)

Early 3-Game Slate

*Update* -> Derrick Jones is getting a spot start today. He is a viable risky punt value option.

CHA/MIA -3.5, 212.5 Zeller OUT, Wade Doubtful, Winslow OUT, Biyombo Starting

Miami sits in the 8th seed in the East followed closely by the Magic, Hornets & Wizards. Thus, both squads should be treating this game as one they must win. Even with Zeller OUT, the Hornets rotations are somewhat unpredictable. The optimal way to get exposure to this game will be through the Heat players. AP Favorite plays in this game ->

[Value GPP] Goran Dragic, PG, 4,500-> Dragic has barely sniffed 20 minutes in his last four games. Three of those were blowouts and Dragic just wasn’t needed. With Wade likely OUT, Dragic is in a very similar spot just a few weeks ago when we were on him and he put up 38 DK points. I expect something similar today and hopefully we get him at low ownership.

[Core/Cash Play] Bam Adebayo, PF/C, 5,200-> Bam has been seeing 25 to 29 minutes in his starting role. Bam is a solid FP/M producer and is a safe bet to pay off his cheap price tag. My only concern is that he will likely be up against Biyombo, who is a solid defender.

[Solid to Elite GPP] Kelly Olynyk, PF/C, 5,300-> This is an ideal spot to fire up Kelly O. He hasn’t done much lately, so he could be off everyone’s radar. I like pairing him with Goran Dragic in GPPs.

[Solid to Elite GPP] Hassan Whiteside, C, 5,700-> Whiteside is a FP/M beast. He is coming off the bench but appears to be locked into an 18 to 20-minute bench role. Despite his limited minutes, he has put up b2b 30+ pt games.

Richardson & Waiters? Honestly, both are fine to solid plays as well. My opinion is those two might be a bit more popular. On a three-game slate, I want to maximize my leverage, so I’ll be looking for ways to pivot off those two.


PHI/MIL -6.5, 230 – No major injuries/rest

This will be an entertaining game to watch as two of the top teams in the East battle it out. I’m always trying to target predictable spots. What makes a spot more predictable? 1) Injuries-> these situations lead to tighter rotations and greater production distribution. 2) Depth (less predictable)-> deep teams loaded with stars, we tend to see production spread out, which brings some risk into the equation. So, what about this game? This is not a spot to fade, we will see players hit value in this game. My preference is to target the highest usage players.

[Elite Core Lock] Giannis Antetokounmpo, SF/PF, 10,800-> Giannis is by far the top play on this small three game slate. He has one of the highest floors and ceiling on the slate. I’m going to lock him in.

[Elite GPP] Brook Lopez, C, 5,400 -> Lopez has had great success in this matchup. He has played 30+ minutes in seven straight games. If he hits that number today, I can’t see how he doesn’t pay off his price tag.

[Elite Play] Joel Embiid, C, 10,000 -> Embiid is still under priced and could put up a massive number this afternoon. I love this match up for him and I’ll probably try to pair him and Giannis. If I had to pick between the two, I’d side with Giannis.


TOR/DET +1.5, 215.5 – Lowry, VanVleet Questionable, Ibaka OUT, Leonard Q (b2b), Jackson/Green Prob

One of the main issues with this slate is the uncertainty of Leonard and Lowry. Tomorrows game is an easier one to win against the tanking Knicks, so I’d imagine Leonard plays today against the Pistons.

[Elite] Marc Gasol, C, 6,400-> With Ibaka OUT, Gasol should see all the minutes he can handle to match up with Detroit’s big front court. Gasol is a guy we need to lock in, if possible, in all formats.

[TBD] Norman Powell, SG/SF, 3,200-> If you are MME’ing and want to gamble on this spot… if both VanVleet and Lowry get ruled out, Powell is a fabulous value punt play to add into the mix. *Risky*

Jeremy Lin, PG/SG, 3,800-> Similar spot to Powell, but honestly, even if he starts, he could just see his normal 18-22 minutes like he did in his last start.

[GPP Value] Reggie Jackson, PG/SG, 4,700-> Jackson is probable and should play today. He has 30+ minute upside and makes for an elite value option on this slate. The match up isn’t ideal but all that should do is lower his ownership.

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