If you’re here it’s probably because you just saw the news. Luka is back so your plans to start Porzingis, Brunson or Tim Hardaway, Jr. aren’t looking as good. Or are they?
Story of the game
Luka Doncic is BACK in the lineup after missing three games due to an ankle and knee sprain. The Mavericks were competitive for three quarters but faltered in the 4th quarters of all three games in his absence. Now that he is back he will likely affect the way most of the team has played. Additionally, the Mavericks will be without Frank Ntilikina and Reggie Bullock instead which will dramatically impact the bench.
On the Clippers side, they get back Marcus Morris today but are still down Batum and obviously Kawhi Leonard.
Who to avoid
So which players are going to be hurt by the return of Luka? Jalen Brunson ($7300) is the main player to avoid tonight. On top of his price shooting up in Luka’s absence, he should lose a lot of touches and time with the starters to Luka. He is certainly capable of hitting his value but he is now an overpriced player.
Luka Doncic ($11,700) is a player to avoid himself. He has only gone well past value once this season and has coasted just below for some time now. If you can afford to swap him out late I’d say do it. He was moving gingerly in practice yesterday so he likely isn’t 100%
Tim Hardaway, Jr. ($5800) Much like Brunson, Hardaway, Jr. is certainly capable of hitting his value with Luka back but he is also capable of putting up a dud. It’s not worth the risk.
Finally, what about the bench unit? No Frank and no Bullock means someone is going to have to step up to help Brunson in the bench unit. You may be tempted to try to predict who will get those minutes between Josh Green ($3000) and Sterling Brown ($3100) and Trey Burke ($3000) but I wouldn’t do it. Brown appeared to have fallen out of the rotation before Ntilikina’s injury so between that and his shaky performances I’d avoid rolling the dice on him. Green was also completely out of the rotation and Burke minutes won’t be as necessary with Luka moving Brunson back to the bench.
I won’t recommend it, but I won’t stop you
Interestingly enough, Kristaps Porzingis ($8500) averaged more fantasy points (~48 per game) in the three games before Luka got hurt than he has in his absence (~46 per game). The issue is that his price was around $7000 before and has leapt to 8500. With that said he should hit his value so he isn’t a horrible play but his price has finally caught up to his production so he’s not a real BOOM candidate.
Dwight Powell ($3400) and Dorian Finney-Smith ($4000) are economical gap-fillers who are usually close enough to value to play but if you’re looking for a boom I’m not recommending them.
Maxi Kleber ($3300): Maxi is the guy I’m banking on tonight. He’s the only guy on the bench that I trust to get shots off with this depleted unit and he has been great from 3 thus far this season shooting 43%. He played 20 minutes in the last game (his first game back from injury) and should be ready to take on more work in this one. His price point is low so it should be fairly easy for him to hit his value.
That’s all I’ve got for you tonight!
If you’re interested in signing up for Draftkings hit this link: DraftKings Signup and use promo code TBPN!