NBA Grind Down: Sunday, March 1st

Welcome to the RotoGrinders NBA Grind Down Article. Each day, we’ll break down all of the matchups with a focus on defense vs. position stats. The Grind Down shows you Vegas lines, defense stats and projected starting lineups for each and every game.

The analysis should point you in the right direction, but it is still up to you to decipher the information and make your own selections. Use this article to help you gain a better understanding of the matchups for the coming week and build from there. We have everything you could possibly need on our Daily Research console for you to be a successful daily fantasy player!

Note: Fantasy Point Average Listed Uses FanDuel Scoring. For more info on FanDuel’s NFL Scoring System, check out the scoring systems section of our FanDuel Review.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter and lineup alerts for the most up-to-date DFS NBA news.

grind down article faq

L.A. Clippers at Chicago – 1:00 PM EST

  • Vegas LineChicago -2.5, 199 Over/Under
  • L.A. Clippers Proj. StartersPaul-Redick-Barnes-Hawes-Jordan
  • Chicago Proj. StartersBrooks-Butler-Dunleavy-Gasol-Noah
L.A. Clippers Chicago
Vegas Total 199 Vegas Total 199
Vegas Sprd 2.5 Vegas Sprd -2.5
Team Proj. 98.3 Team Proj. 100.8
Team Pace 96.76 Team Pace 95.58
Matchup – Opponent DvP Ranks and Projected Starters Matchup – Opponent DvP Ranks and Projected Starters
Proj Starter Chris Paul J.J. Redick Matt Barnes Spencer Hawes DeAndre Jordan Proj Starter Aaron Brooks Jimmy Butler Mike Dunleavy Pau Gasol Joakim Noah
Opp. Season 14 3 17 18 10 Opp. Season 3 16 27 15 16
Opp. Last 7 20 22 7 6 1 Opp. Last 7 5 23 22 22 10

L.A. Clippers

The early game of the day has the Clippers traveling to Chicago for a matinee game. The Clippers were able to get back on track after losing back to back games and crushed the Grizzlies in Memphis by 18 points. They continue to be led by DeAndre Jordan, who has had at least 17 rebounds in 6 of his last 7 games. If you are playing the morning only slate, I can see playing J.J. Redick as a value shooting guard and Jamal Crawford, but they will have to go up against Butler, who will most likely play the majority of the game and is a great defender.

Elite Plays

Chris Paul – He is the man right now for the Clippers and needs to take this team on his back in order for them to keep winning. He should be able to dominate either Brooks or Hinrich throughout the game and a double-double should be in store for Paul again here today.

DeAndre Jordan – Like I said, he has huge rebounding totals since Blake has gone out and has actually put up some pretty high point totals as well. During this seven-game stretch, he has put up at least 35 fantasy points in each and has had four games with 50+. It is not the greatest matchup in the world, but with no Taj, Jordan may get to see a bit of Mirotic and Naz Mohammed on the court today. I expect another big game for him.

Secondary Plays



Just when the Bulls start to get going, Rose seems to get injured year in and year out. It is very hard to watch and be a Bulls fan, but the good news is he should be back in a few weeks and is not as bad as some initially thought. With Rose out, the majority of the offense now falls into the rest of the stars on the team. Check the status of Taj, but at this point he is doubtful and I do not expect him to play after a pretty nasty ankle roll on Friday night.

Elite Plays

Jimmy Butler – When Rose has been out this year, Butler has stepped his game up to be the top offensive guard on this team. He does a bit more of everything: he shoots more, he drives more and facilitates more. This should result in a pretty big game for Butler in a matchup against the Clippers, who are a middle of the road defensive team. He is a great play today at the SG position, especially at DK where he is a bit cheaper than FD.

Joakim Noah – I like Pau here as well, but Pau is very expensive across the industry. Joakim on the other hand is very cheap and Thibs has begun to throw him into big minutes. The injury to Taj will continue to force big minutes for Jo and he should come close to that triple double he seems to flirt with on most nights lately. On the early slate I do not mind playing both Jordan and Noah in this spot.

Secondary Plays

Aaron Brooks – All I can say is he had a terrible game on Friday where he went 2-15 from the field, yet he was still able to put up 17 fantasy points. He has a bad matchup against one of the best point guard defenders in the league, but is very cheap and should at least reach value today with getting around 30 minutes.

Cleveland at Houston – 3:30 PM EST

  • Vegas LineCleveland -0.5, 207 Over/Under
  • Cleveland Proj. StartersDellavedova-Smith-James-Love-Mozgov
  • Houston Proj. StartersBeverley-Harden-Ariza-Jones-Motiejunas
Cleveland Houston
Vegas Total 207 Vegas Total 207
Vegas Sprd -0.50 Vegas Sprd 0.50
Team Proj. 103.75 Team Proj. 103.25
Team Pace 94.89 Team Pace 99.16
Matchup – Opponent DvP Ranks and Projected Starters Matchup – Opponent DvP Ranks and Projected Starters
Proj Starter Matthew Dellavedova J.R. Smith LeBron James Kevin Love Timofey Mozgov Proj Starter Patrick Beverley James Harden Trevor Ariza Terrence Jones Donatas Motiejunas
Opp. Season 2 24 16 19 18 Opp. Season 12 22 25 17 14
Opp. Last 7 21 7 2 15 28 Opp. Last 7 18 18 19 13 9


The other early game is one I am pretty excited to watch, as the Cavs take on the Rockets. I wish the teams were fully healthy for this matchup, but that is not going to happen today. Irving will not be available for this game, which will put a lot more of the offensive load on the shoulders of LeBron, who should be back today. This game should be up and down, as both teams are in the top ten in the league in points scored and are both in the middle of the road in points allowed per game.

Elite Plays

LeBron James – With no Irving, LeBron will take full responsibility for winning this game against a very good Rockets squad. He sat for a day of rest on Friday, but is coming off one of his best games of the season against the Warriors in a statement game. I believe he is going to want to make another statement against one of the best Western Conference teams today and should be in play as the top stud in the early slate.

Secondary Plays

Kevin Love – No Kyrie also gives a bit of a boost to Love. His salary is around the 8K mark at both FanDuel and DraftKings, which means he needs to hit that 40 point mark to reach value. I think that is a possibility against the Rockets, who have the 19th-ranked defense against the PF position.

Matthew Dellavedova – Clearly just a cheap pick who is going to get a bunch of minutes today. He got 38 because of the absence of both Irving and LeBron on Friday and was able to put up 34 fantasy points. I do not expect him to get both of those numbers again today with LeBron back, but 30 minutes should be expected, which I think should allow him to hit value at his close to minimum price across the sites.

J.R. Smith – Smith may not be a bad option today, especially in the early slate only games. He should reach value, as without Irving he should launch even more shots than normal today.


On the other side of the game we continue to have a Rockets team without Dwight Howard. This allows for Harden to be the stud and has also given an opportunity to Terrence Jones, who has restored his starting role for this Houston squad. This game has a huge 209 total with a basically pick’em spread.

Elite Plays

James Harden – If I had to pick between Harden and LeBron, I might go LeBron in this one because of Irving being out. That does not mean I do not think both have monster games in this matchup though. Harden is the top shooting guard as well as the most expensive shooting guard on the slate today.

Terrence Jones – He has become an amazing play each night and should continue to exceed value until his price gets to a point in the 7K range. He hit that 35-40 point range again in this one and should be in play in all formats.

Secondary Plays

Trevor Ariza – He is very consistent and will get you around 25-30 fantasy points, which is value. He will not win you any tournaments, but you know what you are going to get from him.

Golden State at Boston – 6:00 PM EST

  • Vegas LineGolden State -8, 214 Over/Under
  • Golden State Proj. StartersCurry-Thompson-Barnes-Green-Bogut
  • Boston Proj. StartersSmart-Bradley-Turner-Bass-Zeller
Golden State Boston
Vegas Total 214 Vegas Total 214
Vegas Sprd -8.0 Vegas Sprd 8.0
Team Proj. 111.0 Team Proj. 103.0
Team Pace 101.09 Team Pace 98.81
Matchup – Opponent DvP Ranks and Projected Starters Matchup – Opponent DvP Ranks and Projected Starters
Proj Starter Stephen Curry Klay Thompson Harrison Barnes Draymond Green Andrew Bogut Proj Starter Marcus Smart Avery Bradley Evan Turner Brandon Bass Tyler Zeller
Opp. Season 18 2 23 26 23 Opp. Season 6 8 14 16 19
Opp. Last 7 19 5 26 10 20 Opp. Last 7 4 20 29 7 4

Golden State

The Warriors travel to the new look Boston squad in what should be a high scoring, high tempo matchup tonight. With the game being played in Boston, the spread is only eight points in favor of Golden State, which, to me, puts it at the cusp of a blowout potential game. The potential is there, but I think the starters should get close to their full minutes tonight, which is huge in a game with a total of 216.

Elite Plays

Stephen Curry – With no Westbrook tonight, Curry is the elite option at the point guard position. Curry has been a little off and on in certain games lately and it is just due to the fact that his teammates are having big games and he does not care if he just facilitates. At the same time, he has 50+ point upside and is in a great spot here today with the highest total of the night.

Draymond Green – If you played Draymond at his depressed price the last few games, you were probably pretty successful. He is coming off back to back 40 fantasy point games and should be poised for another big performance tonight against the Celtics, who are ranked last (30th) in the league in points allowed to the SF position in the last 3 weeks.

Secondary Plays

Klay Thompson – Klay sticks out a bit at FD where he is close to 7K. That is about where I think he should be able to hit value today and makes a decent play if you cannot afford Harden or Butler.


The Celtics have been a decent squad as of late since their trade. Both Jerebko and Thomas have put around 30 fantasy points in each game since they started playing after getting traded. Boston will need a big game out of Thomas off the bench again if they want to keep this one close against arguably the best offense in the league. The only problem I see recently with Boston, is all their guys are getting around 25 minutes, which makes it tough to trust them in cash games. Guys like Bass, Jerebko, Turner and Zeller could all reach value/exceed value, but I am going to be playing the guys I know are going to get 30+ minutes tonight.

Elite Plays

Avery Bradley – Bradley has quietly had a really good run recently. He has had at least 28 fantasy points in 4 of his last 5 games and had games of 42 and 50 mixed in there. He is one of the few players on the Celtics getting consistent minutes in each game for the Celtics and I think is most trustworthy today.

Secondary Plays

Isaiah Thomas – It is not easy to pay 6K+ for a guy who is coming off the bench, but this matchup fits Thomas perfectly. The Celtics are giving him about 30 minutes per game and those minutes are basically locked in regardless of the outcome of the game. If he hits his first couple shots, he could be in line for a big game. He makes for a great tournament play tonight.

Philadelphia at Indiana – 6:00 PM EST

  • Vegas LineIndiana -11.5, 189.5 Over/Under
  • Philadelphia Proj. StartersCanaan-Richardson-Covington-Richard Mbah a Moute-Noel
  • Indiana Proj. StartersHill-Miles-Hill-West-Hibbert
Philadelphia Indiana
Vegas Total 189 Vegas Total 189
Vegas Sprd 11.5 Vegas Sprd -11.5
Team Proj. 89.0 Team Proj. 100.5
Team Pace 98.11 Team Pace 95.55
Matchup – Opponent DvP Ranks and Projected Starters Matchup – Opponent DvP Ranks and Projected Starters
Proj Starter Isaiah Canaan Jason Richardson Robert Covington Luc Richard Mbah a Moute Nerlens Noel Proj Starter George Hill C.J. Miles Solomon Hill David West Roy Hibbert
Opp. Season 16 27 4 2 12 Opp. Season 23 29 22 29 30
Opp. Last 7 23 26 3 29 6 Opp. Last 7 22 10 11 18 19


The Sixers are in a pretty rough state at the moment as they just try to get through this season and scoop up the number one pick and continue to load up with young talent. All that young talent leads to being an 11-point underdog tonight against the Pacers. This is the biggest blowout worry on the slate and the Sixers are tough to like in a bad matchup against a decent defensive Pacers squad.

Elite Plays


Secondary Plays

Nerlens Noel – The only guy I would look at from the Sixers is Noel, who has big time tournament potential. He has 45 point upside, but has a tough matchup inside against the Pacers, so he does have a lot of risk attached to him.


The Pacers look to beat up on the Sixers tonight and continue their playoff push in the Eastern Conference. The Sixers are one of the worst defensive teams in the league, so the Pacers should be able to take advantage of them and have a few big fantasy performances.

Elite Plays

George Hill – His price is great and has not risen too much, as he starts to get more minutes for the Pacers. He recently played 34 against the Cavs and put up a 49 point performance. I don’t know if we can expect that, but I think he is good for a 30-35 point fantasy performance, which makes value.

Secondary Plays

Rodney Stuckey/C.J. Miles – I like both of these guys, who are both in great spots to put up a big game. I will most likely have a bit of exposure to both tonight and I think both hit value, but one most likely has a big game.

Charlotte at Orlando – 6:00 PM EST

  • Vegas LineCharlotte -1.5, 189 Over/Under
  • Charlotte Proj. StartersWilliams-Henderson-Kidd-Gilchrist-Zeller-Jefferson
  • Orlando Proj. StartersPayton-Oladipo-Harris-Frye-Vucevic
Charlotte Orlando
Vegas Total 189 Vegas Total 189
Vegas Sprd -1.5 Vegas Sprd 1.5
Team Proj. 95.3 Team Proj. 93.8
Team Pace 95.22 Team Pace 95.76
Matchup – Opponent DvP Ranks and Projected Starters Matchup – Opponent DvP Ranks and Projected Starters
Proj Starter Mo Williams Gerald Henderson Michael Kidd-Gilchrist Cody Zeller Al Jefferson Proj Starter Elfrid Payton Victor Oladipo Tobias Harris Channing Frye Nikola Vucevic
Opp. Season 25 5 29 23 26 Opp. Season 7 19 3 21 5
Opp. Last 7 1 11 27 9 16 Opp. Last 7 16 15 6 27 22


It has been the Mo Williams show since the trade over to the Hornets and tonight they go into Orlando. This game has the lowest total on the slate at 187, but is another pick’em, meaning it should be close throughout.

Elite Plays

Mo Williams – He is cheap for his production with his new team and has hit value in each of his starts while putting up two 40 points fantasy games in his last four. Charlotte is giving him 35+ minutes a game and he is running with it. He is a great mid-tiered option tonight at the point.

Secondary Plays

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist – I just wanted to make a note that he has exceeded value in three of his last four games now and is finally getting the minutes. He has a decent matchup against Orlando and should continue to reach value.


Orlando is trying to stay afloat and sadly actually have a chance of making the playoffs if they could turn things around soon. I do not know if that will happen, but they do have some talent on the team and could make a run at this sorry excuse of an Eastern Conference.

Elite Plays

Nikola Vucevic – No one has a great matchup on the Magic side, but Vucevic is basically matchup proof and always has 50 point upside. He is the highest priced center on the late slate assuming Cousins is out and is probably the most trustworthy. I will most likely have Noah in my cash games to save some money, but I can see spending up for Vuc as well.

Secondary Plays


Jump to Page 1 2 Next

About the Author

  • Ryan138 (Ryan138)

  • Ryan (Ryan138) is from Chicago and has been playing fantasy sports for over 10 years. He has been playing daily fantasy sports for over 2 years since he was introduced to Daily Joust in late 2010. In the last year, Ryan has risen into the Top 100 of the RotoGrinders leaderboards by playing at DraftDay, DraftKings and FanDuel in all the major sports.



    I’m wondering about Ajinca’s instead of Asik? Ajincas listed at center on DK and seems way more efficient than Asik (19.7PER vs 15.7PER). Also, averages .67 fppt vs .57fppt.

    Is there any reason why you didn’t list him that I maybe didn’t notice about Asik?

    Thanks for all the help!

  • Ryan138

    Yea, Ajinca is a fine play and I should have mentioned him. The minutes/foul problems are always my concern for him. Ajinca does have some upside today and should be considered for a GPP. Thanks!

  • suhweetness

    Denver vs NO could be one of those double OT games where I can see Ty Lawson who is waaaaay under priced $7,900) going off for 50+ also I think ajinca at $4,800 with a small slate of Late afternoon centers is a crazy steal against a weak Denver Front Court with no Nurkic. Paying up for D Lillard over Lawson is a 50/50 both are underpriced I feel. Lastly Klay Thompson has gotten better on D as the yr has gone on. I’d spin of Avery to Turner who has the same upside and with a much better matchup. Tobias Harris will be very under owned and healthy again. Watch him pop as well with a very sexy price tag. He can play the 3/4 so expecting heavy minutes today.

    Also if there is concern about a Port blowup. Lawson makes a great Contraian play with 50+ pt upside

    Today has 3 slates Early.All day and Late. So everyone will have many different angles to look at

    Good Luck!

  • Jay2136

    Top two in the early slate with higher upside: j.r., j.j. dunleavy, mirotic, or Crawford.

  • suhweetness

    @Jay2136 said...

    Top two in the early slate with higher upside: j.r., j.j. dunleavy, mirotic, or Crawford.

    Just my opinion. Jr,Craw,jj,mir,dun

    With Gasol back Mir could have 6 or 30. So depends on how much risk you wanna take on.

    Jr will get more shots with no Irving. Craw and JJ will get their shots. I am not a dun fan under any circumstance.. That’s just my thoughts.

    Good Luck.

  • suhweetness


    I’m wondering about Ajinca’s instead of Asik? Ajincas listed at center on DK and seems way more efficient than Asik (19.7PER vs 15.7PER). Also, averages .67 fppt vs .57fppt.

    Is there any reason why you didn’t list him that I maybe didn’t notice about Asik?

    Thanks for all the help!

    Asik starts at Center. He doesn’t have a ton off upside without or with AD playing. Ajinca can play both PF and Center. He is much more of a scorer and much more upside. In my opinion. That does not mean Asik is not a good play. Just depends on how much risk your willing to take for upside. I am starting Ajinca today because Nurkic is out and his price tag is very appealing.

    Good Luck.

  • kon81

    do u think it2 will go off against golden state

  • DK_Ninjaaaaa

    Ajinca has a higher ceiling. Asik has a higher floor. Depends what kind of lineup you are building. Ajinca is going into a few of my GPP squads

  • raven4gold

    Thx for the advice some of it i listened too and some of it i went with my own instincts and it paid off. I placed 2nd in yesterdays 150k $2 buy-in on FanDuel and hit for $6,000! Greek Mafia!!!

  • natsboy06


  • thechovanone

    nice call on turner sir! atleast so far ;)

  • suhweetness

    @raven4gold said...

    Thx for the advice some of it i listened too and some of it i went with my own instincts and it paid off. I placed 2nd in yesterdays 150k $2 buy-in on FanDuel and hit for $6,000! Greek Mafia!!!


  • X Unread Thread
  • X Thread with New Replies*
  • *Jumps to your first unread reply

New to DFS?

Be sure to click through our links and use our exclusive promo codes to receive the industry's best sign-up bonuses, including free access to our premium content. is the home of the daily fantasy sports community. Our content, rankings, member blogs, promotions and forum discussion all cater to the players that like to create a new fantasy team every day of the week.

If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, crisis counseling and referral services can be accessed by calling 1-800-GAMBLER (1-800-426-2537) (IL). Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER (NJ/WV/PA/MI), 1-800-9-WITH-IT (IN), 1-800-522-4700 (CO), 1-800-BETS OFF (IA), 1-888-532-3500 (VA) or call/text TN REDLINE 1-800-889-9789 (TN).