For any slate featuring four games or fewer, we break down the game with the best plays relative to the small slate. On larger slates, we’ll highlight the best plays at each position.
Please note the advice below is relevant for daily fantasy purposes. A player or team might be better or worse from a fantasy perspective than in real life due to matchup, price, and lots of other factors. This is important to consider when constructing a roster.
Injuries play a huge role in NBA DFS on a nightly basis. Value plays on the various daily fantasy sites can arise at a moment’s notice so always, always check the starting lineups and injury news right before tipoff.
Finally, note there is a Showdown slate available and For one-game contests, the pricing and lineup structure is different on both DraftKings and FanDuel. In the “Showdown” mode on DraftKings, there are six utility spots with a $50k salary cap. DraftKings has also debuted a “Captain” mode in which there are five utility spots with a CAPTAIN. This specific player receives 1.5x multiplier but also costs more if deployed in that spot.
On FanDuel, the one-game contests include an MVP spot (2x multiplier), STAR (1.5x), PRO (1.2x) and two utility spots. The Full Roster contests on FD also include a new scoring system in which the lowest score of the nine selected players is dropped, allowing users to take more risks with a punt play or two.
11/6/18 NBA DFS TOURNAMENT PICKS
Van Buren: $8 entry, $500k guaranteed (DraftKings) – $100,000 to 1st!
Jefferson: $3 entry, $75k guaranteed (DraftKings)
Shot Machine: $7.77 entry, $444k guaranteed (FanDuel) – $100,000 to 1st!
Slam: $33 entry, $125k guaranteed (FanDuel)
NBA DFS Game Breakdown for November 6, 2018
Atlanta Hawks (+11.5) at Charlotte Hornets (Over/Under – 234)
The Hawks have routinely been blown out this year and are once again double-digit underdogs on the road. It’s tough to pay up for Kemba Walker ($9.3k, $9.2k) since he probably won’t have to provide any heroics down the stretch.
The Hornets do offer solid values on the wing in Malik Monk ($4.6k, $4.6k) and Tony Parker ($4.2k, $4.3k). Parker is averaging an impressive 1.42 DK points per minute over his last four appearances. Monk hit value in a blowout win over Cleveland Saturday and could easily see 20-plus minutes of run if the Hornets cover this spread at home.
Nic Batum ($6.5k, $6.7k) offers upside with a ton of risk. He has a scary projected plus/minus of -5.82 on FantasyLabs. Like Walker, he could ride the bench down the stretch in a blowout.
Charlotte allows the eight-fewest PPG (108.1) and ranks 21st in pace. The Hornets could dictate tempo at home and limit Hawks players such as Kent Bazemore ($5.9k, $6.4k) and Deandre Bembry ($4.3k, $4.5k), who thrive in the open court. Taurean Prince (ankle) is OUT tonight, so Bazemore is in line for increased usage, but his matchup is far from ideal. Bembry is worth deploying for salary relief since Prince’s injury guarantees him more minutes.
Trae Young ($7.3k, $7.5k) will be worth a look in tournaments against a Hornets team that gives up the fifth-most PPG (21.44) to opposing PGs this season. He dropped 15 dimes to blow up against the faster-paced Heat, but a repeat performance of that nature is unlikely. Finally, Dewayne Dedmon ($4.4k, $5.3k) and Alex Len ($4.7k, $5.4k) are in a value-sapping timeshare at center.
Washington Wizards (-1) at Dallas Mavericks (Over/Under – 227)
This seems like the best game to target tonight given how vulnerable both of these teams have been defensively. Washington ranks 28th in defensive rating and is giving up the most PPG (120.7) this season. Meanwhile, Dallas is 24th in defensive rating and is dead last in opponent 3-point shooting (.450) this year.
Bradley Beal ($7.4k, $8.8k) has been playing much better than John Wall ($8.8k, $10.4k) so far this season and offers better per-dollar returns in this matchup.
Kelly Oubre Jr. ($4.9k, $4.8k) loses appeal with Otto Porter Jr. ($5.1k, $6.1k) active tonight. Porter will be worth a look along with Markieff Morris ($5.3k, $5.3k) given the Mavs’ horrendous 3-point defense.
Dwight Howard ($6.1k, $6.8k) appears to be limited at this stage of his career, and Dallas is now formidable at center with DeAndre Jordan ($7.9k, $8.6k) starting. Jordan is arguably the best floor play at center tonight with a projection of 44 DK points per models on FantasyLabs.
Luka Doncic ($7.7k, $8.1k) returned to practice Monday and is expected to play despite his sore ankle. With a 24.8% usage rate, 20.5% assist rate, and 18.8% defensive rebounding rate, Doncic is as safe as it comes against the Wizards’ weak defense.
For value, Dorian-Finney Smith ($3.5k, $3.6k) is an extreme punt play. Wesley Matthews ($5.1k, $5.6k) offers appeal in tournaments given his ability to get hot from downtown. Finally, Dennis Smith Jr. ($5.7k, $6.5k) is clearly underpriced on DK. Along with Jordan, he has the highest bargain rating on FantasyLabs tonight with the potential for 5.6x salary returns.
Brooklyn Nets (PK) at Phoenix Suns (Over/Under – 219.5)
The initial thought on this game is to bet on the Suns getting a point at home in some spots. Phoenix is trending up with Devin Booker ($8.2k, $8.1k) working back from his hamstring injury, and the Nets don’t pose much of a threat with their inconsistent offense.
Despite the rise of Jarrett Allen ($5.2k, $6.7k), Brooklyn remains vulnerable down low. The Nets are giving up the ninth-most RPG (14.98) and allowing opposing centers to shoot an above-average 51.8% from the floor.
DeAndre Ayton ($7.5k, $8.5k) boasts a 29.7% defensive rebounding rate and is a great bet for a double-double in this matchup. Thus, he’s a strong play with a projection of 37 DK points.
Brooklyn is also allowing the ninth-most FPPG (36.41) to opposing SGs this season, and Booker averaged 25 PPG while shooting 50% from 3-point range over two meetings with the Nets last year. He offers slate-winning upside should this game go down to the wire.
For value, Isaiah Canaan ($3.8k, $4.5k) has shown the ability to produce 5x salary returns at times, and he’s extremely affordable on DK. His defensive deficiencies give Spencer Dinwiddie ($4.8k, $5.3k) a ton of per-dollar upside in turn.
Caris LeVert ($7.2k, $8.0k) is emerging as a go-to scorer for the Nets, and he’s safe to deploy in Cash games against a Suns team that ranks 27th in defensive rating.
Since the Suns rank dead last in opponent 2-point FG shooting (.594), LeVert and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson ($4.8k, $5.3k) are stronger plays given their ability to get to the rim. Then, Joe Harris ($4.6k, $4.7k) can offer salary relief with limited upside.
T.J. Warren (back) is expected to play, relegating Ryan Anderson to a very limited role. Trevor Ariza ($4.9k, $5.7k) has exceeded value in consecutive appearances and is a good option regardless of Warren’s status.
Milwaukee Bucks (+2) at Portland Blazers (Over/Under – 226.5)
This isn’t the best spot for MVP candidate Giannis Antetokounmpo ($12.6k, $12.8k). His price tag is now in a crippling range, and Portland is unlikely to yield a triple-double or the same production that fast-paced Sacramento coughed up to Giannis on Sunday.
The Blazers rank fifth in defensive rating and third in opponent FG shooting (.426) this year. They’re also sixth in 3-point defense, which could allow them to contain the 3-happy Bucks.
A more affordable option on the Bucks roster is Eric Bledsoe ($6.3k, $7.1k). He’s struggled to meet value of late, but Portland allows the most PPG (22.27) and third-most FPPG (43.34) to opposing PGs this season. Bledsoe carries a projection of 32.2 with a conservative ceiling of 44 DK points on FantasyLabs tonight. Along with fellow combo guard Malcolm Brogdon ($5.0k, $5.0k), he’s worth using in Cash games. Plus, Brogdon is significantly cheaper on FanDuel.
Damian Lillard ($9.6k, $10.1k) also comes with a ton of risk at his lofty price tag. The Bucks are tough on opposing PGs, and Portland may be able to win this game with balance instead of leaning on their superstar backcourt.
C.J. McCollum ($6.2k, $6.7k) is a far more conservative play if you want to target the Blazers’ main scorers. The best play from Portland’s roster and perhaps the best GPP option at center is Jusuf Nurkic ($6.7k, $7.6k). He remains affordable on DK, and the Bucks still can’t defend opposing bigs. They’re yielding the fifth-most FPPG (46.86) to opposing centers this season.
Al-Farouq Aminu ($5.4k, $5.1k) is a viable option in most formats since he’s the Blazers’ best option to cover Giannis. He also carries plenty of risk since Giannis often gets defenders into foul trouble.