NBA DFS Projections Preview: November 21

Just a five game slate today, and although no teams are on a back-to-back, every team is on the front of a b2b tomorrow. The biggest news is the potential return of Malcolm Brogdon and the continued absence of Donovan Mitchell, and the clear game to target today is IND/ATL, which is currently sitting at a 251.5 total.

Let’s check out all the news and notes before some DFS picks!

This is a daily weekday NBA article that can hopefully show you some lineup-building tools on RotoGrinders, as well as provide some picks and analysis based on those tools.

Today’s FanDuel & DraftKings NBA DFS Projections Preview

There are ways to get edges in DFS NBA, such as tracking injury news right up to lock and swapping in top value plays if a questionable player gets ruled out, knowing which teams are on a back-to-back and not fully rested, and adjusting to daily positional matchups and team pace matchups to always be targeting the players and teams with the highest daily upside. I will be focusing on the “main slate” each weekday, but you can still find plenty of analysis for any other slates, including weekends, on RotoGrinders.

This article is meant to highlight some of RG’s most helpful tools for NBA, including our industry-leading NBA DFS projections and NBA lineup optimizer, with some picks and analysis along the way. Let’s get to it!

NBA DFS Injury Roundup

Before we take a look at the projected lineups and picks for the day, it’s important to get a feel for any injuries that we’ll need to monitor throughout the day and how these injuries will affect our builds if a questionable player ends up out. For cash games, I’m looking for big minutes, high usage, and fast-paced games with bad defenses. So knowing who is dealing with any kind of injury and might not get 30+ minutes is critical, as well as how a regular starter being out will affect other players’ usage rates and if their replacement starter is worth using.

Looking at The Situation Room, we can see who is definitely out, likely out, and questionable for the upcoming slate and how it will affect lineups if certain questionable players end up sitting.

  • LBJ continues to be listed as questionable with his left calf contusion. If he ends up out, look for Rui Hachimura to start and be a top value play, while Davis would get a big usage bump and be a top spend up.
  • Brogdon is questionable to return from his hamstring strain that cost him the last five games, and if he does it would likely move Mays back to the bench and hurt the ceilings of the other starters. If Brogdon remains out, then we’ll see a similar lineup and rotation for Portland from the last few games.
  • LeVert is questionable after missing last game with knee soreness, and if out, Garland, Strus, and Mobley would have to carry a lot more offense, while Porter and Merrill would see increased roles again as the top bench guards.
  • Nembhard missed the last game with back soreness and is questionable today, so all of Hield, Nesmith, and McConnell would pick up his minutes if he remains out.

If you want to see how someone out will affect the rest of the team, check out the CourtIQ tool, where you can see what players’ usage rates and FPPM (fantasy points per minute) rates are for any player with certain teammates on or off the floor.

NBA Projected Lineups – Notes & Analysis

Let’s take a look at NBA Starting Lineups to see any major lineup news, such as guys missing or interesting depth chart changes. This page is my favorite tool for NBA DFS as we get betting lines, DFS salaries, projected ownership, and updated depth charts that we can refer to as we build our lineups or see what is affected by any news throughout the day, so make sure to take advantage of this page to keep you up to date on a variety of beneficial DFS info.

  • Fultz and Carter remain out for Orlando so Black and Bitadze should keep their starting roles.
  • Mitchell remains out for Cleveland, so Wade will likely start for him, and all the other starters get big usage bumps.
  • Batum should continue to start for Oubre, and Gordon should keep starting until Beal returns.

NBA FanDuel & DraftKings Lineup Optimizer Picks

With a good feel for injuries, projected lineups, and top games to target, let’s check out LineupHQ, where you can create lineups in seconds with our lineup optimizer tool as well as the “build” tool where you can create up to 300 lineups at once based on your custom settings.

If we click on the “P/$” column header in the LineupHQ grid, it will rank all the available players from high to low based on their expected fantasy points per dollar of salary on the specific DFS site you have selected — this is one of the best starting points for finding value on any slate.

On FanDuel:

  • Eric Gordon ($5,300) and Grayson Allen ($4,900) continue to be top p/$ values as locked in starters, and if you don’t spend up on Embiid or AD at center or go cheap with Bitadze, Jusuf Nurkic ($6,600) is a great mid-range option who should have some extra motivation against his former Portland team.
  • Keyonte George ($5,200) and Jordan Clarkson ($7,100) continue the trend of great p/$ guard options, especially Clarkson who has gone for 40+ FP in five straight games yet his price only went up $100 from last game.

Looking at DraftKings:

  • Young ($9,100) is at his lowest salary in over two weeks and is the clear top cash game play of the slate, while Haliburton ($10,400) also remains at a great price in the highest projected game of the slate. Mathurin ($5,300), Brown ($5,500), Hunter ($4,900), and Johnson ($6,100) all remain strong value options for more exposure to this game.
  • Gordon ($5,200) and Allen ($5,100) remain excellent values from Phoenix along with Nurkic ($6,300), and it’s going to be hard fading Jordan Clarkson ($7,300) until his price starts getting closer to $8k.
  • Pascal Siakam ($8,200) saw a $300 price drop and is at his second lowest salary of the season, so I like targeting him in cash games as he will certainly be closer to $9k most of the year, and the same can be said for Evan Mobley ($7,700) who also dipped $300 in price after going for 40+ FP in three straight and will continue to see more usage with Mitchell out.

Keep checking LineupHQ for any projections changes throughout the day, as the best p/$ plays could change in an instant if someone gets ruled out or some other type of news makes someone likely to see more or less minutes or usage.

NBA DFS – RotoGrinders Premium Tools Pre-Lock

If you have any tough lineup decisions or need some quick picks, be sure to check out the Consensus Value Rankings, Expert Survey, and LineupHQ tags from our DFS experts.

For up-to-the-minute news and analysis leading right up to lock, make sure to follow the RotoGrinders NBA twitter feed, read our NBA DFS Alerts page, and watch NBA Crunch Time.

Good luck today!

Image Credit: Getty Images

About the Author

  • Erik Wardenburg (naapstermaan)

  • Erik Wardenburg, aka naapstermaan, has been playing fantasy sports since 2005 and DFS since 2010. He went to UC Davis, majoring in Economics, and began working with RotoGrinders in 2015. He currently manages the lineups page for MLB, NBA, and NFL and writes a slate preview article for those three sports on weekdays. He also does consensus value rankings for MLB and NBA and manages The Situation Room for NBA. He’s made multiple live finals in MLB, NBA, and NFL on a variety of sites and enjoys grinding small/medium stakes every day.

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