NBA December 11th, 2019: How To Be Contrarian Without Being an Idiot

Malcolm Brogdon is priced appropriately and gets a matchup against Boston’s league best DvP against the PG position as well as the lowest total on the slate. Easy fade right? Let me ask you a question. What does Dennis Smith Jr, Spencer Dinwiddie, Jamal Murray and Patrick Beverley have in common? They are the last 4 starting point guards to face the Celtics away from Boston. Their fantasy point totals are as follows:

*Smith Jr, 32.8
*Dinwiddie, 65.3
*Murray, 40.5
*Beverley, 57

Brogdon has not been good lately, and I don’t expect him to garner much ownership. But he’s in a sneaky spot here and its worth some consideration.

One of my favourite things about DFS is recency bias. I use recency bias to target players in good spots that have not performed well and vice versa. Most casual players will look at a player’s game log and if it looks good, plug them in. When you look at D’Angelo Russell’s game log, what do you see? Do you see a guy who missed a bunch of games due to injury and then put up mid 20s with a peak at 35 upon his return against bottom feeding defense? Or do you see a guy who played 34 minutes, took 22 shots, who’s price hasn’t moved, and gets a Knicks teams that gave up 31 real points against Damian Lillard. Do you scroll down further and see that Russell has put up a season high 82.75 FPTs, while regularly hitting 50 FPTs? Yes, you could play Ja Morant or Ricky Rubio, or Donovan Mitchell, or pay up for a Westbrook or Harden. These are all obvious plays and with obvious plays, comes more ownership.

Kawhi Leonard makes his highly anticipated return to Toronto tonight. Kawhi will be celebrated by the team and the fans tonight, he will also receive a bunch of ownership. People love narratives. Narratives can be a way to determine if a certain player will be more motivated in certain games. I have no doubt that Kawhi will be motivated tonight, except he’s playing the Toronto Raptors. The Toronto Raptors, coached by Nick Nurse who schemes to limit the best in the game. The Toronto Raptors, who have the length with Pascal Siakam and OG Anunoby to bother Kawhi on the wing, as well as Marc Gasol defending the paint any time Kawhi tries to get inside. The Toronto Raptors who have a 9-2 record at home. In the last game between these two teams, Kawhi was doubled at every chance he could. He struggled to a respectable 12-11-9 line that game or 43 FPTs. That game was also without Paul George. Kawhi Leonard has averaged nearly 20% less FPTs this season with Paul George in the lineup. If we apply that number to the 43 that he got last game, we can expect Kawhi to finish with 35 FPTs. Lastly, as a member of the Toronto Raptors last season, in his first game back in San Antonio, Kawhi scored a whopping 32 FPTs. I would advocate a fade of Kawhi Leonard tonight, I think the Raptors will make it difficult on him, which will benefit others like Paul George and Patrick Beverley, who should have an easier path to rebounds and open looks after Kawhi passes out of a double team.

Generous, is how I would describe Charlotte’s interior defense. Tonight they get a combination of Jarrett Allen and DeAndre Jordan. Last time these two teams played, I was very high on DeAndre Jordan as a GPP play. The reason for this, is Jarrett Allen went off in the first meeting and I figured he would be highly owned, while Jordan was in the exact same spot as Allen. Today I’d expect both to garner a decent amount of ownership and neither are bad plays today, however, I present to you Spencer Dinwiddie. I’d expect him to go relatively low owned today, after his price has increased over 8,000. Dinwiddie has played better in the most recent outing, when facing the same team so far this season. He’s also played better at home and he is capable of completely taking over the game, as shown by his performance against Boston. Charlotte is coming off a B2B against a fast paced Washington team, so its entirely possible that they can’t keep up with Brooklyn’s pace tonight.

Last but not least, the biggest news of the day is that Giannis will sit this one out against New Orleans. Most of the ownership is going to move to Bledsoe, and Middleton as well as some of the Milwaukee depth (as it should). But if you take that approach and stack Milwaukee, you will need to bring it back with New Orleans for Correlation yada yada. Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, and Josh Hart are all deserving candidates. Giannis hasn’t missed a game so far this year, but if we go back to last year, the Bucks have given up a lot of big games to opposing players when Giannis sat. When a star player gets rested, most people will build their lineups around that specific team due to increased usage and more minutes to be played. Most people will also forget to add players from the opposing team. In this case, if the game goes into overtime, or is high scoring in regulation, and you only have 3 or 4 Bucks, you will be behind all of the lineups that did a game stack with the Pelicans players. Correlation is key, and it’s also easy to forget.

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