WIzards @ 76ers (76ers -8.5, O/U: 231)
TOP PERFORMERS (GAME 1)
PHI Tobias Harris 51.2 FDFP, 37 minutes
PHI Ben Simmons, 50.5 FDFP, 38 minutes
PHI Joel Embiid 39.2 FDFP, 30 minutes
WAS Bradley Beal, 51 FDFP, 41 minutes
WAS Russell Westbrook, 40 FDFP, 43 minutes
WAS Daniel Gafford, 25.2 FDFP, 20 minutes
The performances of Harris and Beal put them atop the chart on a rare night where they outscored a usually more productive teammate, as both Embiid and Westbrook did not meet value respective to their salary. The downtick for Westbrook is probably the most glaring issue when combing through the box score, as it appears Doc Rivers has figured out a way to tamp down Westbrook's output with Simmons and Seth Curry. The question is whether the Wizards will adjust, and the answer is probably in the negative. Although the Wizards pulled off a fantastic run to get to this point, they are outmatched defensively and will rely almost exclusively on Beal and Westbrook to get them to a win. The addition of Gafford is probably interchangeable with a few other players, as Rui Hachimura and Davis Bertans were in the neighborhood of Gafford's total. Although we can probably expect more from Embiid against this frontcourt, the salaries of Simmons and Harris are simply too good to ignore. I'm also more in favor of a pivot to Beal over Russell Westbrook ($11,600), as his prohibitive salary limits what we can do at other positions.
1. PG Ben Simmons, PHI ($7,400)
2. PF Tobias Harris, PHI ($8,100)
3. SG Bradley Beal, WAS ($9,500)
Hawks @ Knicks (Knicks -2, O/U: 213)
TOP PERFORMERS (GAME 1)
ATL Trae Young 53.4 FDFP, 35 minutes
ATL Bogdan Bogdanovic 30.8 FDFP, 34 minutes
ATL Clint Capela 30.6 FDFP, 35 minutes
NYK Alec Burks 35.6 FDFP, 26 minutes
NYK Julius Randle 32.4 FDFP, 38 minutes
NYK Derrick Rose 31.5 FDFP, 38 minutes
For the Hawks, it's Trae Young ($9,000) and then everyone else. As you can see, Young's production mirrors that of Beal, and for $500 less. While the pace of this game is slower and the Hawks caught the Knicks on an off night, Young should be able to stick close to this total. On the other end, we have to expect a resurgent game from Julius Randle ($9,800), and recency bias may limit his popularity. When you consider his 40-point games versus the Hawks in the regular season, he's impossible to ignore, but he'll need to recover from a horrible shooting night in Game 1 to meet value here. Derrick Rose ($5,900) and Alec Burks ($5,500) are about as cheap as you'll find top performers, but I far prefer taking Rose and his playoff experience over the streaky Burks, who saw 12 minutes less on the floor and is vert shot-dependent.
PG Trae Young, ATL ($9,000)
PG Derrick Rose, NYK ($5,8900)
PF Julius Randle, NYK ($9,800)
Grizzlies @ Jazz (Jazz -9, O/U: 219)
TOP PERFORMERS (GAME 1)
MEM Dillon Brooks 53.4 FDFP, 36 minutes
MEM Ja Morant 38.8 FDFP, 35 minutes
MEM Jonas Valanciunas 34.9 FDFP, 39 minutes
UTA Mike Conley 49.7 FDFP, 33 minutes
UTA Bojan Bogdanovic 37 FDFP, 33 minutes
UTA Rudy Gobert 35 FDFP, 25 minutes
This game will be a tough one to figure out, as the potential return of Donovan Mitchell ($8,000) could put a wrench in things when selecting Utah targets. The Jazz seemed a bit shell-shocked by his late scratch, and they played one of their worst quarters of basketball this season to begin the playoffs. They weren't great defensively either and had no answer for Dillon Brooks ($7,200), who was able to create his opportunities out in space and was also effective slashing to the basket. Regardless of the outcome, the Grizzlies are the less volatile team tonight. Mike Conley ($7,800) is likely safe, but we've already endorsed too many point guards as it is. If Mitchell can't go, Bojan Bogdanovic ($5,600) would again be a great option. The reduced minutes from Rudy Gobertshouldn't be a huge concern, as he fouled out for the first time this season and should see a decent uptick in Game 2.
SG Dillon Brooks, MEM ($7,200)
C Rudy Gobert, UTA ($8,000)
C Jonas Valanciunas, MEM ($8,800)
BUDGET PLAYS AND OTHER OPTIONS
We've already mentioned Rose and Burks as decent value options. Let's look at some additional cheap plays and other players who didn't make the lists.
SF Danny Green, PHI ($4,100)
Green looked pretty good despite nursing a nagging hip injury. He put up 24.4 FDFP in 31 minutes, and he should be able to beat value if the team utilizes him in a similar fashion. He could also play a key role in garbage time if this game gets out of hand.
SF Rui Hachimura, WAS ($5,100)
Small forward seems to be the spot to go for value, and with uncertain news for Bogdanovic and Mitchell's return, using Green and Hachimura look like decent calls to make. He only put up 18 FDFP in Game 1, so we need more from him to be worthwhile.
Here is a small list of additional targets with considering:
SG Seth Curry, PHI ($4,900)
PF Royce O'Neale, UTA ($4,000)