Daily Fantasy

NBA DraftKings & FanDuel DFS Primer: May 18

FantasyPros considers the best player values in Yahoo fantasy leagues for Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals.

The Lakers look to redeem themselves after their Game 1 loss on Tuesday.

That Game 1 was fascinating. Denver looked like they would run away after a 72-54 first half, but LA actually had a chance to tie in the final minute. That was their only game-tying shot after the opening two minutes of the game. This series was tough to predict before that game, but it’s even more difficult now. Denver will surely be the favorite in this Game 2, but it’s a game L.A. needs to win as well.

Core Plays

Anthony Davis (PF/C – LAL): $11,600 DraftKings, $16,000 FanDuel
Jokic is not known for his defense, and if Game 1 is any indication, Davis should go off in this series. The big man collected 40 points, 10 rebounds, three assists, three steals and two blocks. Most importantly, he took 23 shots and played 41 minutes. As long as this superstar plays 40-45 minutes and takes 20-25 shots, he will be among the highest-scoring players on every slate.

Jamal Murray (PG – DEN): $9,400 DraftKings, $14,500 FanDuel
We had Murray in this section two days ago, and he provided us with a gem in Game 1. This point guard has been playing like an All-Star for two months now, averaging 40 DraftKings points per game in that span. He showed that in Game 1, tallying 31 points, five rebounds, five assists and three steals. That monster performance is less surprising when considering the matchup, with Los Angeles allowing the second-most fantasy points to opposing point guards in the regular season. Davis, LeBron, and Jokic are all easy choices, but Murray is well below those guys in salary and isn’t much worse.

Cash Game Considerations

Nikola Jokic (C – DEN): $12,600 DraftKings, $17,500 FanDuel
This guy is ridiculous. The two-time MVP has scored at least 72 DraftKings points in eight of his last nine games. He finished Game 1 with 34 points, 21 rebounds, and 14 assists. That’s hard to even fathom, especially since he took just 17 shots in that masterclass performance. Providing a 72-point floor can’t be matched by anyone in the NBA, and it looks even better since the Lakers allowed the fifth-most fantasy points to opposing centers during the year.

LeBron James (SF/PF – LAL): $11,200 DraftKings, $15,500 FanDuel
LeBron made some critical mistakes late in the Game 1 defeat, but he was superb until that point. The superstar totaled 26 points, 12 rebounds, and nine assists in that loss. That’s right on par with what King James has done throughout his playoff career, averaging over 50 DraftKings points per game. He’s also reached at least 40 fantasy points in all but a handful of games this year, and there haven’t been many players in the history of the NBA with a higher floor.

GPP Targets

Rui Hachimura (SF/PF – LAL): $3,600 DraftKings, $8,000 FanDuel
Hachimura played some great defense on Jokic in Game 1, and there’s some thought he’ll enter the starting lineup here. The feisty forward finished that game with 17 points on 8-of-11 shooting. Rui should never be this cheap if this guy is playing 28 minutes and taking double-digit shots.

Michael Porter Jr. (SF/PF – DEN): $7,200 DraftKings, $11,000 FanDuel
MPJ didn’t go off in Game 1, but he provided 15 points, 10 rebounds, and two blocks. That’s all we can ask for with Jokic and Murray both going off, with Porter posting a 32-point average over the last month. He’s also scored at least 26 DraftKings points in all three matchups with Los Angeles, and he’s one of the few players with a good matchup since Joker and Murray are swallowing up so much attention.

Value Plays

Bruce Brown (SG/SF – DEN): $6,600 DraftKings, $8,500 FanDuel
Using bench players can be risky, but Brown is one of the most valuable players on this Nuggets team. He played just 24 minutes in Game 1 but still had 16 points, four rebounds, and two assists. He’s actually the primary ball-handler when Murray is on the bench, averaging 29 DK points per game across his last 21 outings. That’s all you can ask for from such an affordable player, and he’s one of the only bench players with a legitimate floor in this series.

Dennis Schroder (PG/SG – LAL): $4,800 DraftKings, $7,500 FanDuel
We’ve seen Schroder start the last three games for LA, playing 30 minutes a night across his last four fixtures. He hasn’t done much with that workload, but it’s rare to see a player in this price range with that sort of playing time. It’s even more shocking when looking at Schroder’s resume, averaging over 30 DK points per game in a 30-minute role throughout his career. If D’Angelo Russell continues to struggle, Schroder should persist with a massive workload.

Advantageous Pricing

Rui Hachimura (SF/PF – LAL): $3,600 DraftKings, $8,000 FanDuel

Bruce Brown (SG/SF – DEN): $6,600 DraftKings, $8,500 FanDuel

Aaron Gordon (SF – DEN): $6,800 DraftKings, $9,500 FanDuel


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