Daily Fantasy

NBA DraftKings & FanDuel DFS Primer: March 23

FantasyPros considers the best player values for DraftKings and FanDuel NBA DFS on Thursday's slate.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and the Thunder face the Clippers on Thursday.

What happened to Paul George on Tuesday was really unfortunate, and I was happy to hear that nothing too serious transpired. It will be a huge factor on this slate, though, because we only have eight teams in action. LA is one of those, and it’ll be interesting to see who steps up in his absence. With that in mind, let’s kickstart our picks with the biggest beneficiary on the Clippers!

Injury Report

As of 10:30 a.m. ET:

  • Paul George (knee) OUT
  • Norman Powell (shoulder) OUT
  • Kenrich Williams (wrist) OUT
  • Chet Holmgren (foot) OUT
  • LaMelo Ball (ankle) OUT
  • Mark Williams (thumb) OUT
  • Zion Williamson (hamstring) OUT
  • Ben Simmons (knee) OUT
  • Jalen Suggs (concussion) OUT

Core Plays

Kawhi Leonard (SF/PF – LAC): $9,900 DraftKings, $10,000 FanDuel
It will be nearly impossible to fade Kawhi for the remainder of the season with George likely out two to three weeks. With George off the floor, Leonard leads the team with a 32% usage rate. That’s awesome when you consider his recent form, with Kawhi scoring at least 36 DraftKings points in 27 straight games. He’s also got a 49-point average in that span, and that should be his floor against a 20th-ranked Thunder defense.

Terry Rozier (PG/SG – CHA): $8,200 DraftKings, $8,400 FanDuel
Rozier is averaging nearly 40 DK points per game when LaMelo Ball is out. He’s also scored at least 39 fantasy points in six of his last seven outings, generating a 44-point average in that span. This matchup is brilliant, too, with the Pelicans allowing nearly 120 points per game over the last two months. In their last matchup, which Ball missed, Rozier registered 57 DK points in his highest-scoring game of the year.

Brandon Ingram (SF/PF – NOP): $9,000 DraftKings, $8,700 FanDuel
Ingram is averaging 41 DK points per game across his last 18 outings, totaling a 45-point average across his last four fixtures. That should be easy to reach against Charlotte, sitting 23rd in points allowed while posting a 29th OPRK against opposing forwards. When they played earlier in the year, Ingram dropped 54 DK points in a masterclass performance.

Cash Game Considerations

Julius Randle (PF/C – NYK): $9,100 DraftKings, $10,300 FanDuel
Randle has scored at least 41 DraftKings points in 45 of his last 49 games, averaging nearly 50 DK points per game in that span. He also provided 66 DK points just a few days ago, and the big man is clearly feeling it in his 40-minute role. Orlando is an outstanding matchup, with Randle scoring at least 49 fantasy points in four of their last five meetings.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (PG – OKC): $9,600 DraftKings, $10,600 FanDuel
This tricky point guard is averaging 50 DraftKings points per game this season, scoring at least 40 DK points in 54 of 61 games. That ceiling and average are absurd from a player below $10K, and we just saw him collect 31 points, seven rebounds, and four assists against the Clippers a few days ago.

GPP Targets

Jonas Valanciunas (C – NOP): $7,100 DraftKings, $8,000 FanDuel
Valanciunas has scored at least 45 DK points in three straight outings and is finally playing over 30 minutes a night. If you look at the 24 games that Valanciunas has played at least 28 minutes, he’s averaging 41 DK points per game. That’s bad news for Charlotte, surrendering the most fantasy points to opposing centers.

Mitchell Robinson (C – NYK): $4,600 DraftKings, $5,900 FanDuel
Robinson is averaging nearly 30 fantasy points per game this season and has flashed a 50-point upside. That makes this price tag hard to understand, dropping 27 or more DK points in two of his last three outings. We also saw Robinson provide 30 fantasy points in his last matchup with the Magic, and he should be locked into a 30-minute role against that large frontcourt.

Value Plays

Wendell Carter Jr.(PF/C – ORL): $6,900 DraftKings, $7,200 FanDuel
Speaking of Orlando’s frontcourt, let’s get Carter Jr. into our build. The Magic big man has been averaging nearly 35 DK points per game as a starter. He also comes into this matchup scoring at least 31 DK points in six straight outings while amassing a 39-point average in that span. That makes the $7K price tag hard to believe, especially since he has at least 33 fantasy points in five of his last eight matchups with the Knicks.

Nick Richards (C – CHA): $5,000 DraftKings, $5,700 FanDuel
Richards has been starting at center since Mark Williams got injured and has at least 32 DK points in four of his last six outings. He’s also scored at least 42 fantasy points in two of those, and it hard to understand why he’s not above $7,000 on both sites. Facing New Orleans isn’t too bad either, with the Pelicans posting a 24th OPRK against opposing centers.

Ivica Zubac (C – LAC): $6,100 DraftKings, $6,700 FanDuel
We were concerned about Zubac’s role once LA acquired Mason Plumlee, but he has played at least 27 minutes in 14 of his last 16 games. The big man is also averaging 31 DK points per game in that span, scoring at least 30 fantasy points in six of his last eight outings. The matchup with OKC is the icing on the cake, with the Thunder allowing the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing centers.

Advantageous Pricing

Julius Randle (PF/C – NYK): $9,100 DraftKings, $10,300 FanDuel

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (PG – OKC): $9,600 DraftKings, $10,600 FanDuel

Mitchell Robinson (C – NYK): $4,600 DraftKings, $5,900 FanDuel

Jalen Brunson (PG – NYK): $7.800 DraftKings, $9,000 FanDuel

Moritz Wagner (C – ORL): $3,700 DraftKings, $5,000 FanDuel

Donovan Mitchell (PG – CLE): $8,400 DraftKings, $9,700 FanDuel

Darius Garland (PG – CLE): $7,200 DraftKings, $8,200 FanDuel

Nic Claxton (C – BKN): $6,800 DraftKings, $7,900 FanDuel

Jarrett Allen (C – CLE): $6,300 DraftKings, $7,700 FanDuel

Caris LeVert (SG – CLE): $5,200 DraftKings, $6,900 FanDuel

Naji Marshall (SF – NOP): $3,500 DraftKings, $4,900 FanDuel

Larry Nance Jr.(PF – NOP): $3,600 DraftKings, $5,100 FanDuel

Jaylin Williams (C – OKC): $3,500 DraftKings, $5,300 FanDuel


Joel Bartilotta is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Joel, check out his archive and follow him @Bartilottajoel.