I am now into my 3rd year of NBA DFS and I just can’t figure out how to work short slates. I lose them almost every time which is baffling since I am picking the same players going off as everyone else. No matter how high my score kept rising, the cash line kept going up. Seems like if I don’t get in that cash line at the beginning then it’s not going to happen. Why am I always coming up short no matter who I pick?
I did some digging today and noticed something interesting. It appears that Lebron James sunk my lineup. Here was my best lineup last night that won me a pathetic $2.50
Lowry – 54.5
Johnson – 15.4
Wade – 37.5
Clarkson – 30.3
James – 56.8
Butler – 44.9
Williams – 9.7
Gibson – 27.2
Lopez – 50.5
Despite having 30% of my lineup crush value with 50+ score, my lineup was sunk by Johnson and Williams. Using the 5X rule, Williams came up 15.3 pts short and Johnson 9.1. That’s about a 25 pt deficient that I needed to make up elsewhere. Lopez, Lowry and James definitely helped erase that deficient which is why I got over 300, but on a short slate, that’s not enough. Thousands of people were scoring 350-400. I still can’t figure out why their score so easily goes up there and I’m having to fight tooth and nail to just get over 300.
So I tried a lineup with no punts. I knew Marvin and Johnson were pontentially the weak spots going in and sure enough, they burned me bad. So I tried the same lineup without James this time. Now I could afford to pay up for D’angelo Russell and Julius Randle. Now my lineup would have looked like this:
Much higher total and I could have gone in feeling safer with Randle and Russell. I had James in every lineup and I think he was the main reason I lost. Of course, Russell almost never scores that high so maybe it’s just a fluke. Also James was 50% or higher owned in my GPP so how did so much of the competition still manage to score in the high 300s? I looked at several of their lineups and saw one thing in common. They simply got lucky with their punt. Most went with Bojan or Frank. Pure luck. Bojan almost never scores that high. Marvin Williams could have easily been the one to get the 30+ score, not Frank. Simply rotten luck on my part.
However, if I had avoided James, I would not even had to play the wack a mole game with punts. Does safe and balanced approach seem to work better for small slates or is it really just a night by night approach?