NBA DFS Picks: Building Blocks for Sunday, April 11th | Zion Williamson

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Eric MacPherson
·6 min read
NBA DFS Picks: Building Blocks for Monday, May 3rd | Zion Williamson
EMac gives his favorite NBA DFS picks for Yahoo, DraftKings + FanDuel daily fantasy basketball lineups, including Zion Williamson | 5/3/21
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NBA DFS action on Sunday, April 11, locks at 7:00 p.m. ET with an eight-game main slate on Yahoo, DraftKings and FanDuel. Before locking in lineups, make sure to check out Awesemo’s daily fantasy basketball picks, rankings and projections. Let’s dig into some NBA DFS picks and daily fantasy basketball, including Zion Williamson, Khris Middleton, Jrue Holiday and more.

Don’t forget to head over to the Awesemo NBA DFS HOME PAGE for more great written daily fantasy basketball content, including the FREE Deep Dive — the most in-depth article in the industry.

NBA DFS Picks: Building Blocks, Sunday, April 11th

Yahoo Play of the Day — Zion Williamson: New Orleans Pelicans at Cleveland Cavaliers

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 44.54 | DraftKings: 45.11

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 24.2% | FanDuel 22.8% | DraftKings 19.6%

  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $46 | FanDuel $9,700 | DraftKings $9,400

Cleveland was destroyed last night by the Toronto understudies 135-115, and it is scary to think how they will even remotely be able to deal with Zion Williamson. Jarrett Allen and Larry Nance Jr. are both on the shelf, which leaves Kevin Love (if he plays on the back-to-back), Isaiah Hartenstein and Dean Wade as the underwhelming frontcourt options.

Lonzo Ball, Jason Hart and Nickeil Alexander-Walker are all out, but Brandon Ingram is back from his injury. While it may seem farfetched, Williamson could be in the mix for a triple-double. He led the team with eight and six assists in the last two games, and he should easily reach double-digit rebounds against the Cavaliers. Add in the 20 field-goal attempts, and he is an amazing cornerstone option.

Khris Middleton: Milwaukee Bucks at Orlando Magic

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 40.67 | DraftKings: 42.62

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 12.8% | FanDuel 23.6% | DraftKings 14.8%

  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $35 | FanDuel $7,800 | DraftKings $8,000

The Bucks are unlikely to have the services of Giannis Antetokounmpo tonight, as he is dealing with a sprained ankle. On Friday most of the regulars stayed on the sideline as the Hornets handed the Bucks their third straight home loss. They have also lost their last three games and six of their last nine. It is time for them to refocus and start taking care of business.

NBA WOWY shows that when Khris Middleton is alongside Giannis, he averages 1.01 Yahoo fantasy points per minute and a 21.6% usage rate. Without Giannis on the floor, Middleton sees nearly a 20% increase in production to 1.25 fantasy points per minute and a 31.3% usage rate. For perspective, that usage rate would land him in the top 10. As a side note, Giannis has a 32.2% usage rate on the season.

Jrue Holiday: Milwaukee Bucks at Orlando Magic

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 38.96 | DraftKings: 39.4

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 22% | FanDuel 9.6% | DraftKings 9.6%

  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $34 | FanDuel $8,700 | DraftKings $8,200

Similar to his teammate, Jrue Holiday also sees a boost in production when Antetokounmpo is sidelined. Holiday averages 1.01 Yahoo fantasy points per minute and a 18.5% usage rate with Giannis. Without him, he gets a mega-boost to 1.32 fantasy points per minute on the strength of a 28.0% usage rate. Most of this increase is the result of additional field-goal attempts.

Good Value

Los Angeles Clippers vs. Detroit Pistons

Detroit has put a giant stamp on the season, as they are now mailing it in unabashedly. Kawhi Leonard is getting a long weekend, having been ruled out for rest. The Clippers’ next game is on Tuesday against the Pacers in Indianapolis, which should be a fun matchup. Los Angeles is favored by a dozen points, and even though there were some wild outcomes last night, with both the short-handed Lakers and Raptors pulling off wins, it is highly unlikely that the Pistons can manufacture that kind of miracle.

Paul George has reasonable salary on Yahoo at $36 and DraftKings at $8,400, and he can rack up the fantasy production quickly. There is risk here regarding his upside, but in each of his last two games he dropped 50 Yahoo fantasy points in 34 minutes against Phoenix and Portland.

Marcus Morris and Nicholas Batum stand out as the players most likely to benefit from Leonard’s absence. Luke Kennard has a nice revenge matchup, and he may actually get 25-plus minutes after having fallen out of the rotation for stretches this season. Terance Mann is a wild card who has performed well in mop-up duty, and there should be plenty of that tonight. Ivica Zubac is also a solid option, but he is more of a late-slate play, as projecting him for more than 24 to 26 minutes does not seem likely. Finally, for those in need of an absolute dart throw on the late slate, Patrick Patterson is the guy. Stay away from DeMarcus Cousins, who is unlikely to exceed 8 to 10 minutes tonight.

Risky Value

Ja Morant: Memphis Grizzlies vs. Indiana Pacers

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 35.19 | DraftKings: 37.18

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 23.2% | FanDuel 21.2% | DraftKings 17.0%

  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $27 | FanDuel $7,000 | DraftKings $7,000

There is no questioning the talent of Ja Morant, but like many young players he is maddeningly inconsistent. Typically this manifests when he is not looking to score which results in single-digit field-goal attempts and poor overall fantasy production. The other wrinkle is that Memphis does not usually have any player on the court for more than 32 to 34 minutes, and only Morant is averaging more than 30 minutes this season, at just 31.6 per appearance.

The Awesemo Boom/Bust Tool gives Morant a solid 16.2% probability of being in the DraftKings optimal lineup. This is appropriately reflected by his projected popularity of 17.0%. However, there is only an 18.3% chance of him exceeding his boom score (5x salary + 10) of 45.0 DraftKings points. Conversely, there is a 40.0% likelihood of him falling below his bust threshold (5x salary) of 35.0 DraftKings points. Indiana is not an easy opponent, and in tournaments the preferred play would be to let other gamers assume the risk of a pedestrian performance from Morant.

Yahoo Daily Fantasy Basketball Discount Dandies

  1. James Ennis: ORL vs. MIL – $10

  2. Isaiah Hartenstein: CLE vs. NOP – $14

  3. Marcus Morris, Reggie Jackson and Nicholas Batum: LAC vs. DET – $10

Final Thoughts on the Sunday, April 11th NBA DFS Slate

Tonight the slate comes in three waves, with a pair of games at 7 p.m. ET, four at 8 p.m. ET and a twin-bill late-night hammer at 10 p.m. ET. Be on the lookout for unexpected news after lock. Keep in mind that salaries and scoring formats differ across the various fantasy sites, and a slam-dunk play on Yahoo may be a below-average NBA DFS pick on DraftKings or FanDuel.

The post NBA DFS Picks: Building Blocks for Sunday, April 11th | Zion Williamson appeared first on Awesemo.com.