NBA DFS Picks: Boom Boom Pau
NBA DFS Picks: Boom Boom Pau
Happy New Year! It's 2016, year of the Monkey and my time to shine. Last year was pretty cool, but 2015 is so out of style now as we're bringing in the year with a five game slate featuring a Sixers/Lakers game, a fantasy players' dream. Make your resolutions now, but I doubt you'll be able to keep them.
PG: John Wall
Perhaps the most popular point guard play tonight will be Ish Smith against the Lakers, but I can't seem to shake John Wall. Wall has been awesome. Actually, awesome might be an understatement. After preserving a tough stretch to the beginning of the year, Wall has dragged his DK points per game to nearly 45 – scoring less than that only twice in his last 10. His price has climbed to match his production, but he's still well below Westbrook levels while carrying a similar upside and floor. Wall has increased his usage rate to nearly match his career high, while increasing both his assist and steal percentages this year. He's averaging nearly 17 shot attempts per game while giving you a pretty safe floor with all the assists. I don't know what else to say, just use the guy. He's going to win tournaments tonight.
SG: Kobe Bryant
If this was written like six years ago, you'd keep me from even explaining the rationale for selecting Kobe. But, Kobe is old now, and frankly not the same guy. Nevertheless, he is still shooting a ton and as a result carries a pretty nice upside should he find an efficient stroke. Good news, he plays the Sixers tonight and everyone finds their stroke against the Sixers. Kobe is still sporting a usage rate above 30% while attempting nearly nine threes a game, and 20 field goals total per 36 minutes. The bad news is, Kobe is shooting 34% overall, and only 26% from beyond the arc. That should concern you a bit, but hey, it's the Sixers.
SF: Nic Batum
To make up for all of Kobe's missed shots tonight you'll need some peripheral statistics – insert Nic Batum. Since leaving the Blazers, Batum has been able to flourish a little bit more on the offensive end, increasing his usage rate to a career high 22.9%. While he has taken a bit more on his shoulders offensively, he's still been able to inflate his floor on the back of his propensity to claim rebounds and add in assists. Batum has increased both his rebound and assist rate this year, averaging 6.6 rebounds and 5.1 assists per game to go along with his 16.3 points. For only $7,500 on DK, he won't need much to hit value, and he's built in a triple-double upside since moving to Charlotte.
PF: Nerlens Noel
If you're a Twitter user, you've seen all sorts of tweets about Nerlens' performance since the arrival of Ish Smith. Here's the short story - he's been way better. I know it's a small sample size, but in his last three with Ish, Noel has scored 37 DK points or more each time, topping out at 41.25 last time against the Kings. Tonight his matchup couldn't be any better as he'll be taking on the Lakers, and yes, Ish Smith will be playing alongside him. Per Statmuse, Noel has shot 51.8% with Ish Smith on the floor in his career, compared to 44.8% without him. That seems to be pretty telling, as most of Noel's shots are going to come at the basket, meaning more good looks with Ish. Don't only be concerned about his offensive performance though, as Nerlens has the ability to add in points on the defensive end via blocks and steals.
C: Pau Gasol
On a five game slate without any top superstars (aside from John Wall) you'll be able to roster a bunch of middle-upper tier players, and you'll have to in order to win. Pau is the top of the line in terms of centers tonight, and while he doesn't have an incredible matchup against Robin Lopez (who just owned Andre Drummond), I think he'll be just fine. The price tag has been down for Pau this year after a slow start, but this is a great time to take advantage as Pau scored less than 40 DK points just five times in all of December. He's averaging a double-double this year, while adding in 2.2 blocks per game, giving you a pretty safe floor to go along with a nice upside should the Bulls look to feature him offensively. While this game won't feature a super fast tempo, or a high total, it should stay competitive, giving Pau plenty of minutes to prove his worth.
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