NBA DFS Picks: Building Blocks for Friday, April 9th | Nikola Jokic

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Eric MacPherson
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NBA DFS Picks: Building Blocks for Friday, April 9th | Nikola Jokic
EMac gives his favorite NBA DFS picks for Yahoo + DraftKings + FanDuel daily fantasy basketball lineups Nikola Jokic | Friday 4/9/21
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NBA DFS action on Friday, April 9, locks at 7 p.m. ET with a nifty nine-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 Nikola Jokic, Kelly Oubre, Draymond Green 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.

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NBA DFS Picks: Building Blocks, Friday, April 9th

Yahoo Play of the Day — Kelly Oubre: Golden State Warriors vs. Washington Wizards

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 34.58 | DraftKings: 34.84

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 31.8% | FanDuel 32.4% | DraftKings 25.8%

  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $24 | FanDuel $6,400 | DraftKings $6,300

Tonight there is a tremendous matchup between the two fastest-paced squads in the league. Washington has the fifth-worst defensive efficiency in the NBA this season, and Golden State has the third worst over its last 10 games. This all comes together with a 238.5-point projected point total that is miles ahead of the next-highest game on the slate. If there ever were an environment built for Kelly Oubre specifically, then this is it. Make sure he is on the majority of rosters tonight in all contest formats.

Nikola Jokic: Denver Nuggets vs. San Antonio Spurs

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 51.26 | DraftKings: 53.58

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 7.4% | FanDuel 24.2% | DraftKings 23.0%

  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $55 | FanDuel $10,100 | DraftKings $10,500

This is going to be a key victory for the Nuggets, who need to start securing wins if they want to host a first-round playoff series. Their next game is Sunday afternoon against Boston, which is going to be a much tougher tilt. Though they have lost nine of their last 11 games, the Spurs have been frisky. Only three of their losses would be classified as a blowout, which bodes well for Nikola Jokic seeing 32 to 34 minutes.

Jokic is in the midst of a splendiferous season. He is eighth in the NBA with 26.3 points and 10.9 rebounds per game, and his 8.7 assists rank fifth overall. This has resulted in a dozen triple-doubles, which trails only the 20 tallied by Russell Westbrook. The Spurs do not have an answer in the paint for Jokic, and in the two prior meetings, he averaged 34.4 minutes, 30 points, 9.5 rebounds, 7.5 assists and 1.5 combined blocks/steals.

Russell Westbrook: Washington Wizards at Golden State Warriors

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 55 | DraftKings: 58.82

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 9.8% | FanDuel 10.0% | DraftKings 17.8%

  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $55 | FanDuel $11,200 | DraftKings $11,000

Oscar Robertson’s all-time career triple-doubles mark of 181 is within range for Russell Westbrook, who has 166 in his career. He leads the league in triple-doubles with 20 in just 43 games as a Wizard. Even with Bradley Beal back after missing half a dozen games with a hip injury, Westbrook cruised to a 23-point, 15-assist, 14-rebound triple-double with 68.5 DraftKings points in Orlando on Wednesday. Beal leads the league with 31.2 points per game, and he is second in usage. Westbrook is second with 10.6 assists and 11th with 10.5 rebounds per game, and his 21.8 points ranks him 25th. This gives him the seventh-highest usage of any player with at least 1,400 minutes this season.

Washington is about to fall out of contention for the play-in tournament. They play again tomorrow in Phoenix and again on Monday in Utah. Tonight is a winnable game, and they should pull out all the stops while likely accepting a schedule loss Saturday and potentially resting one of their dynamic duo.

Good Value

Draymond Green: Golden State Warriors vs. Washington Wizards

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 36.25 | DraftKings: 36.32

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 24.2% | FanDuel 12.8% | DraftKings 24.6%

  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $27 | FanDuel $7,500 | DraftKings $6,700

Washington has been a bottom-five rebounding team this season and over their last 10 games, they have the third-worst turnover rate. The pace and number of missed shots bodes well for Draymond Green. Though the totals are not particularly flashy, Green’s production across the board, with 6.4 points, 6.5 rebounds, 8.5 assists and 2.2 combined blocks/steals, has him averaging nearly 1.1 fantasy points per minute. Though he has just three triple-doubles this season, this matchup aligns nicely with his skillset. The salary is not going to break the bank, and gamers will not want to overlook the unconventional center when other gamers flock to the inevitable stars-and-scrubs build.

Risky Value

Jalen McDaniels: Charlotte Hornets at Milwaukee Bucks

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 12.31 | DraftKings: 12.89

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 0.1% | FanDuel 1.4% | DraftKings 21.6%

  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $12 | FanDuel $4,300 | DraftKings $3,300

Not all NBA DFS value picks are created equal. Jalen McDaniels is picking up some traction today, and gamers need to understand the risks. McDaniels has appeared in just 25 games this year. Sitting near the minimum salary on DraftKings has him popping in early projection models. McDaniels drew a spot start on Wednesday against Oklahoma City, appearing for only the 25th time this season. With LaMelo Ball and Gordon Hayward out, it makes sense that coach James Borrego will take a look at how McDaniels can compete. Through his first two seasons, he has played in 41 games and averaged 14.2 minutes and a pedestrian 0.75 fantasy points per minute. If he draws a second start, then he may approach 30 minutes again. However, if he comes off the bench, he will likely see less than 20 minutes. Awesemo is projecting him to play 15 to 16 minutes in the absence any starting information.

Awesemo’s Boom/Bust tool shows that there is a miniscule 0.8% chance of McDaniels appearing in the DraftKings optimal lineup tonight. That gives him a -20.2 leverage score. His boom score (5x salary + 10) of 26.5 DraftKings points has less than a 1% chance of hitting. Conversely, he has a 73.7% likelihood of falling below his bust score (5x salary) of 15.5 DraftKings points. Minutes are everything, and unless McDaniel is in the starting lineup, he should not be in gamers’ player pools.

Yahoo Daily Fantasy Basketball Discount Dandies

  1. Deni Avdija: WAS at GSW – $10

  2. Kevin Huerter: ATL vs. CHI – $10

  3. Mo Bamba: ORL vs. IND – $12

Final Thoughts on the Friday, April 9th NBA DFS Slate

Tonight there are five games tipping off within the first hour, and then there are four late games. 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.

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