This article is part of our NBA DFS Breakdown series.
The game that interests me the most on this slate is Jazz at Hawks. These two teams played an exciting game during their first meeting, and the Jazz will be coming into Atlanta on the second night of a back-to-back.
DFS users who are looking for a sneaky game to stack should strongly consider this matchup. The game has the third-highest over/under (225.5), but the highest expected pace (100.5). If both teams hit their shots, this game could be bigger than many anticipate.
There are other games to pay attention to though, so let's dive into a breakdown of each matchup:
Nuggets at Wizards
Spread: DEN (-8.5)
|Michael Porter Jr.||F||Back||Out||4/1/2019|
These squads have yet to do battle this season, and they'll get the series over with by the end of the month. Denver has rattled off four wins in a row, while the Wizards are 3-3 over the past six. The Nuggets are in an especially good spot here, as the Wizards are on the second half of a back-to-back, might be missing Trevor Ariza, and play at the ninth-fastest pace in the NBA. It would be surprising to see Washington cover the spread here, and I'd be inclined to take the under as well.
Paul Millsap has come back alive for the Nuggets, posting 30-plus FP in each of the past four games, which includes a performance of 50.1 FP against the Mavericks. Aside from him and Nikola Jokic, it's tough to pin down other DFS options with confidence. Gary Harris still doesn't seem fully healthy, while Jamal Murray and Will Barton have been up-and-down across the past handful of tilts.
Bradley Beal got back on track Wednesday, crossing the 50 FP threshold in a loss to Chicago. Jabari Parker, with Trevor Ariza exiting the game early due to a groin injury, played 38 minutes and posted 46.7 FP. Ariza's potential absence could open up value for the Wizards here despite the less-than-ideal game script. Aside from Parker, we saw Bobby Portis play 38 minutes Wednesday. DFS users looking for a cheap value option should consider Troy Brown, who saw 30 minutes in the wake of Ariza's injury, recording 25.0 FP. On the season, he averages 0.9 FP/min.
Timberwolves at Hornets
Spread: CHA (-5.5)
The Timberwolves secured a 121-104 victory in the first game of this series. Karl-Anthony Towns was unstoppable, dropping 35 points, 12 rebounds, six blocks, three assists and two steals in 36 minutes.
The Wolves will be looking to turn things around, as they've lost four in a row. The Hornets are in a similar boat, having won just one of the past five tilts. Both teams are dealing with some significant injuries, and it seems Charlotte has been given the nod by oddsmakers largely due to home-court advantage. This contest may come down to who can carry their team to greater heights – Karl-Anthony Towns or Kemba Walker. Both squads are roughly league average when it comes to pace, so neither team is getting a significant boost in this matchup.
Aside from Towns, who has two 50-plus FP outings over the past four, Tyus Jones and Josh Okogie are intriguing DFS options. Jones has gone for at least 25 FP in three of the past four, while Okogie has totaled 66.8 FP across the past two. If Taj Gibson ends up on the shelf, Dario Saric and Anthony Tolliver are the ones in line to benefit. They represent GPP dart-throws on this slate.
Jazz at Hawks
Spread: UTA (-8.0)
Thursday marks the second and final matchup between these two squads. The Jazz won the first game 128-112 back on Feb. 1, with both Ricky Rubio and Rudy Gobert having 20-and-10 performances. Trae Young came up just shy, racking up 28 points and nine assists.
The Hawks have lost three straight, while the Jazz have won five straight. Despite the drastically different levels of success this season, oddsmakers predict this game to stay within single-digits, likely noting the Jazz are on the second half of a back-to-back set, traveling from New York to Atlanta. Though they'll be on tired legs, the Jazz will be paced up here. Utah is the 14th-fastest team in the NBA, while Atlanta checks in as the second-fastest squad. Interestingly, this contest has only the third-highest over/under on the slate, but the highest expected pace. As a result, DFS users looking to stack one game could pivot to this matchup, rather than Nuggets-Wizards or Mavericks-Kings.
Considering Rubio's performance the last time these two teams met, plus three straight games of 29-plus FP, he should be strongly considered Thursday. Joe Ingles has also played well lately, posting at least 30 FP in three of the past five contests. Jae Crowder could be a low-owned GPP option, as he's averaging 29.1 FP across the past two. Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell are always worth consideration.
It's been all Trae Young and John Collins lately, as the two have combined for 12 performances of 30-plus FP and three efforts of 50-plus FP across the past seven games. Dewayne Dedmon is another option, though he should be used in GPPs only considering his spotty play. He has two games of at least 30 FP across the past five.
Pistons at Suns
Spread: DET (-7.5)
The Pistons have no injuries
|Jimmer Fredette||G||Not Injury Related||GTD||3/21/2019|
The first matchup between these two teams occurred back on Nov. 25, and the Pistons secured a 118-107 victory. There were great performances across the board, as Devin Booker (37 points), Deandre Ayton (25 points, 13 rebounds, three blocks), Reggie Jackson (19 points, eight assists) and Andre Drummond (19 points, 16 rebounds, five steals) all had noteworthy performances.
The Suns have won two of the past six games, while the Pistons have won two of the past five. This matchup has the lowest over/under on the night, but you might be able to find some value on the Pistons. Detroit ranks 27th in pace, and Phoenix will speed them up, ranking 12th.
Blake Griffin sat out Monday's loss to the Cavaliers for rest, but he'll be back in action here. He hasn't played up to expectations lately, which may have been the reason for rest. Across his past four appearances, he's averaging just 28.2 FP. Over the past three games, Reggie Jackson and Andre Drummond have performed well, with the former going for 30-plus FP twice and the latter posting over 50 FP twice.
With Kelly Oubre ruled out for the remainder of the season, we can glean some insight about possible beneficiaries by looking at Monday's game against the Bulls – a game Oubre was out for. Deandre Ayton (60.9 FP), Devin Booker (42.1 FP) and Josh Jackson (28.4 FP) were the only players to crack 20 FP. Mikal Bridges might be worth investing in too, as he played 40 minutes.
Mavericks at Kings
Spread: SAC (-9.0)
The Kings emerged victorious by a score of 120-113 in the first matchup between these squads, though that was back in mid-December, when the Mavericks still had DeAndre Jordan, Harrison Barnes, and others. Luka Doncic, De'Aaron Fox and Buddy Hield all had 28 points, but Doncic's nine assists, six rebounds and one steal makes me give him the nod for best performance.
The Kings have lost four of the past five contests, while the Mavericks have just two wins since the All-Star break and are on the second half of a back-to-back, having played in Portland yesterday. Dallas could be worth targeting on today's slate, however, as the Kings – the fastest team in the NBA – will be speeding up the 10th-slowest team in the Mavericks.
With Maxi Kleber out Wednesday, Justin Jackson stepped up, posting 27.3 FP across 34 minutes. He's a cheap GPP flier if Kleber is out again. Jackson, Jalen Brunson (28.9 FP) and Luka Doncic (37.0) were the only players to post at least 20 FP yesterday. Contributions have ultimately been less-than-consistent for Mavs players, but it seems like we can turn to Brunson and Dwight Powell as guys who can get us near value often. Doncic has been great this season overall, though his performances haven't been as solid since he revealed he's nursing knee soreness.
For the Kings, Marvin Bagley, Nemanja Bjelica and Harry Giles are the most interesting options. Bagley looks healthy and has gone for 30-plus FP in two straight contests. Bjelica had one of his best games in a while Tuesday, posting 32.5 FP in 28 minutes. Giles has one 30 FP effort under his belt within the past trio of games.
Pacers at Warriors
Spread: GS (-11.0)
The Pacers suffered a 132-100 loss at the hands of the Warriors on Jan. 28, and oddsmakers, understandably, aren't being kind with the spread here. Considering the blowout, there weren't any true standout efforts, but DeMarcus Cousins had a nice game with 22 points, six rebounds and four assists in 25 minutes.
The Warriors have won three of the past four games, while the Pacers are on a three-game losing streak. The Pacers will get a bump in pace here, as they rank 24th in that metric compared to the Warriors 10th.
Without Collison available in the Pacers' most recent matchup, Domantas Sabonis (39.2 FP), Myles Turner (37.0 FP) and Tyreke Evans (36.1 FP) were the three Pacers to go for 30-plus FP. That trio would be enticing here if Collison remains out. Turner has been the most consistent top-tier player on the team lately, as he hasn't slipped below 32.0 FP across the past three games.
With DeMarcus Cousins out over the past two games, Steph Curry has caught fire, going for 50-plus FP in both contests. However, Cousins is expected back, so Curry's value may dip here. With the team essentially healthy, the usual thought applies to the Warriors: their upside is capped due to shared usage. As always, they remain fine cash options, but it's best to look elsewhere in GPPs.