Easy Breezy: Chalk Stack
The Houston Rockets have been slaying at one of the slowest paces in the NBA this season, ranking only 29th in the league in pace thus far. They get a matchup against the Oklahoma City Thunder, who currently rank fifth in the NBA in pace. Houston has found plenty of success, though, ranking fourth in the league in offensive rating through 32 games. With that being said, Oklahoma City ranks second in the NBA in defensive rating this season. The Rockets are -1.5 point favorites in a game set at 221 points, giving them an implied total of 111.3 points.
James Harden has been an elite option this season, posting a 37.4% usage rating through 29 games. He has also caught fire recently, averaging 39.7 points, 6.8 rebounds, 9.5 assists, and 2.5 steals (70.0 DK points) in 39.0 minutes per game over the last 10 days. He has also scored 66+ DK points in five of his last six games, including an 86.5 DK point performance against the Los Angeles Lakers. P.J. Tucker is another player that has been locked into big minutes, and he has found plenty of success over his last five games. Over that span, he’s averaging 12.2 points, 8.6 rebounds, 1.4 assists, and 1.0 steal (29.0 DK points) in 36.2 minutes per game. There are limited salary relief options on this five game slate, and Tucker is one of the safest cheap plays on this slate. Clint Capela also comes with a surprisingly low price tag for how well he has been playing. Over the last 10 days, he’s averaging 15.7 points, 14.5 rebounds, 1.0 assist, 2.0 blocks, and 1.0 steal (41.5 DK points) in 33.6 minutes per game. He has scored 38+ DK points in in five of his last six games, adding another safe option for a reasonable price tag to this stack.
Wildcard GPP: Low Owned Stack
The Milwaukee Bucks and New York Knicks have been playing at an above average pace in 2018, ranking sixth and 13th in the NBA in pace, respectively. Milwaukee also ranks second in the league in offensive rating, while New York ranks only second in the NBA in defensive rating. The Bucks are currently -10 point favorites in a game set at 227 points, and they feature an implied total of 118.5 points.
Giannis Antetokounmpo will feature some ownership because of his name value, but it’s impossible to avoid him in a Milwaukee stack. Mario Hezonja disrespected Antetokounmpo by stepping over him after a dunk. That will give Antetokounmpo a little added motivation to dominate in this game. He has been playing well recently, scoring 50+ DK points in four of his last five games, including a 77 DK point performance against the Cleveland Cavaliers. Antetokounmpo is also averaging 68 DK point per game against New York. Khris Middleton has caught fire since returning injury, averaging 18.8 points, 5.8 rebounds, 5.0 assists, and 1.5 steals (36.3 DK points) in 34.3 minutes per game. He has scored 30+ DK points in each of those games, and he has also found plenty of success (1.27 DK points per minute) against the Knicks in two matchups. Malcolm Brogdon has only played in two games since returning from injury, averaging 13.0 points, 8.0 rebounds, 4.0 assists, and 1.0 steal (30.3 DK points) in only 25.4 minutes per game. He had been playing minutes in the high-20s or low-30s prior to his injury, and that could be the case today. Furthermore, he is averaging 32.0 DK points in 34.0 minutes per game against the Knicks. Brogdon certainly comes with some risk, but he’s an extremely cheap option, as well.
Hidden Gem: Value Guard
I have outlined Brogdon above, so I won’t go into too much detail here. Over his last 10 games, he’s averaging he’s averaging 30.5 DK points per game, while displaying tremendous upside. He gets a good matchup against the New York Knicks, who have featured a below average defense. Brogdon comes with some risk because of his recent injury, but he makes an outstanding salary relief option on this slate.
Hidden Gem: Value Big
I have outlined Tucker above, so I won’t go into too much detail here. He has been an absurdly consistent option, while also flashing upside over his last five games. He gets a decent matchup against the Oklahoma City Thunder, who have struggled against power forwards this season. Tucker should feature a plethora of ownership today, and it would be wise to use him in all leagues.
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