Finding Value in NBA Slate for 3/28/2016
If you have never read my article before, here is a little background on what I am trying to accomplish. I normalize the defenses using a Poisson Distribution model. If you are unfamiliar with math, it basically means if the defense is averaging a 1, they are a typical defense. If the defense has a number lower than 1, they are a better defense than average. If the defense has a number higher than 1, they are a worse defense than average. From those numbers I multiply them to a formula I came up with for how I expect a player to do based on recent and long term trends. That gives me the projection for the day. I then find something I call $PP (Dollars Per Point) for each player, which is based on a score of 250 points. If a player has a $PP less than 200 he’s undervalued and over 200 he would be overvalued. The farther away from 200 the more over or under valued a player is for the given night. All of this data is based on Draft Kings currently, but will soon be available for Fan Duel.
*Note*: These are not meant for you to look at and take every player I have mentioned on this list. This list is simply players that are undervalued and in good positions. You need to look at the data and situations and make your own decisions on who you believe to be in the best position for the night. Also, some players may be ruled out that are in the data set, make sure to follow some sort of injury app like Basketball Monster or Fantasy Labs NBA to get the most up to data information on Twitter. We also have a link on the front of our webpage.
Interesting night we have tonight. Before I get to the guys that are in good value positions, I need to say that at the late stage in the season I think it is wise to target teams that are fighting to get into the playoffs. Last night, Harden played a ton of minutes because the Rockets desperately needed the win to stay out of playing the Spurs. Just little things like that need to go into your thinking this late into the season.
Target DvP: NOP, DAL, CHI, MIN, POR
Stay Away DvP: TOR, UTA, MIA, BKN
The name that pops up to the top of the list is Jordan Farmar of the Grizzlies. The Grizzlies have tried a ton of different point guards and have finally found one that is giving them some decent minutes. He is still battling with McCallum for a full lot of minutes, but in his time he has played relatively well. Jeff Teague is in a fantastic position tonight against the Chicago Bulls. They have not defended the point guard position well over the last few games, and Teague has really been playing better since the All-Star Break. If Millsap is ruled out, it could mean the workload will increase for guys like Teague and Horford on the offensive end. Please look at the spreadsheet for the more value, there is really a ton tonight at the point guard position. If you are looking for the top projections on the night they are Lowry, Westbrook, and Lillard with Lowry being the cheapest price tag out of that bunch. Parker being ruled out for the Spurs will open up a lot more minutes for Patty Mills, he didn’t perform great against the Thunder the other night, but the Grizzlies should prove an easier matchup for him.
Target DvP: DAL, BKN
Stay Away DvP: SAS, UTA
As usual, Zach LaVine jumps to the top of the list for shooting guards. This guy seems to never get a price increase and continues to play a lot of minutes, even in the late part of the season. He is going against the Suns, who have been decent defending the shooting guard, but nothing outstanding. The Trail Blazer crew is second on the list with Crabbe and Henderson with Henderson playing a little better than Crabbe in the second half of the season (Could it be because the Trail Blazers traded Goyle? Sorry bad Harry Potter Joke there). One name I really like tonight is Normal Powell. If he is starting, he has been over 30 minutes the past two games and has played well for his price. Obviously, he is a bang or bust guy, but he doesn’t need much to hit value (only a GPP play). The highest projections on the night are Demar DeRozen, C.J. McCollum, Andrew Wiggins, and Dwayne Wade. Wade is actually in the best spot tonight out of those guys, but seems like he will only play about 25 minutes.
Target DvP: BKN, DEN, BOS
Stay Away DvP: UTA, SAC
Interesting few names jump to the top of the value list for small forwards. One interesting name is Jordan Hamilton, who got his first game with the Pelicans and played relatively well. Obviously, he is a stretch if you are worried about him getting the minutes, but the Pelicans are basically in a D league situation at this point and could throw him in for a long period of time. Al-Farouq Aminu of the Trail Blazers has been doing a good job in the past few weeks, and seems to really have figured out his spot in the offense (he struggled early on and was way overpriced… now figuring it out and underpriced… imagine that). Another real punt play is Justice Winslow. He seems like he is getting a decent amount of minutes now, but doesn’t know what to do with them. If you are into trying to get minutes out of players he is an option, a frustrating option, but could help you win a GPP. Top level projections are Carmelo and Durant with Carmelo being in a better position. However, Durant and Westbrook are in a high profile game tonight against the Raptors and I am really interested to see how that game goes. Could get into a star vs star situation with Lowry/DeRozen vs Durant/Westbrook.
Target DvP: SAC, LAC
Stay Away DvP: TOR, OKC, SAS
Nikola Mirotic has jumped to the top of the value board at $4,300 tonight. He is just such a bang or bust guy that it really skews his projections, but makes him a nice GPP play for some exposure. An interesting name is LaMarcus Aldridge. I have no clue what Pop is going to do tonight, I know a lot of the guys from the Spurs have been ruled out, which puts LMA in a great spot if he plays. He will be the primary option tonight and the Spurs have a knack for staying in games, even if their best players aren’t all out there. Another interesting play is Kristaps going against the Pelicans tonight. He could be in for a huge night as the Pelicans are down to their third string power forward. Top level options include Cousins (if he plays) and Dirk. Both need to be monitored for their status as the day continues.
Target DvP: SAC, MIN, MEM
Stay Away DvP: TOR, OKC, DEN, LAC
Big night tonight for the centers, tons of good value at the top of the board. Nurkic, Chris Anderson, Sullinger, and Olynyk all jump to the top of the board for low level options. Nurkic is the best statistical option out of those, but may not get the minutes that Anderson and Sullinger can offer. If you are looking for a more stable options, Karl-Anthony Towns is in a fantastic position tonight and will not have to deal with Chandler. He could really put up a 30/15 night tonight. Other options include both Lopez brothers and Pau Gasol with Brook and Pau being the highest projected on the night (other than KAT).
Thanks for reading and good luck tonight! If you have any lineup questions feel free to ask me on twitter, but I don’t much care just telling someone to play a certain player because in projections there is never a sure thing.
Chris Hollander (@UndoneRSG)