Fantasy Basketball Pick: Best NBA DFS DraftKings Selection Strategy For Kings vs. Lakers Showdown November 26


Friday night’s NBA Showdown is a showdown between the Kings of Sacramento and the Los Angeles Lakers at 10:30 p.m. ET. As usual, DraftKings features a huge Showdown contest for this game, and below are specific targets on the slate for Friday’s Last Drink.

Define your DraftKings the fantastic basketball lineups here: NBA Showdown $ 120,000 Fadeaway [$30K to 1st] (SAC vs. LAL)


The captain’s choices

Russell Westbrook ($ 17,700)

LeBron James ($ 16,800 CP; $ 11,200) and Anthony Davis ($ 17,100 CP; $ 11,400) receive all the praise, but Westbrook is the guy who shows up every day and gets the job done. The Lakers ‘surprise win at Indianapolis on Wednesday is attributed to LeBron James’ return, but Westbrook was the real star – his Over / Under was +14 while James was -3, and Davis didn’t even bother to to dress because it was under the weather. James edged out Westbrook and dealt an extra pass, but Westbrook bounced off James and was only one block away from James’ two. Additionally, James scored twice as many points as Westbrook – 39 pts to 20 pts – because he took twice as many hits – 29 FGA to 15 FGA (both have to work on their shot, but that’s another story).

The question becomes, “Why won’t James play hero ball again?” It could happen or James could go back to safe mode and build up his energy reserves. The Lakers had lost seven of 10, were finishing a six-game road trip, and LeBron had been out for most of those trials and tribulations. He needed to step up and kick some front row fans out, and he ticked those two boxes in Indianapolis. With that on the sidelines and a clash with the Kings on deck, it would seem likely that James would hand the keys back to Russell Westbrook. In the game before the Pacers won, Westbrook recorded a triple-double against the Knicks while LeBron was suspended.

The perception is that Westbrook is having a bad season, but it’s anecdotal and heavily influenced by highlighting specific games (i.e. his 33% shooting percentage against the Pacers). The reality is that he shoots 43.1% from the field and his career average is 43.7%. The notoriously average 3-point shooter shoots the long ball the same way (30.3% this season versus 30.5% in his career).

This choice is fairly straightforward, and for the most part the statistics are boisterous. There is only one thing that matters Friday night: Is LeBron playing, and if so, how much? If LeBron is all-in, then he’s the captain’s choice. If it’s the LeBron light, turn on Russell Westbrook.

Buddy Hield ($ 9,900)

At the start of Alvin Gentry’s interim era, Buddy Hield established himself as the star of the Kings. Hield played for Gentry in his rookie season (New Orleans 2016-17), so there might be some old chemistry. Hield’s emergence could be the result of someone having to carry the load of the second unit in Gentry’s accelerated offensive. Maybe nothing has changed, it’s just that a few other three fell in love with Hield in the last two games.

He could be cold tonight and be an absolute bust, or he stays hot and the new coaching staff is ramping up his role because no one else on the squad is doing anything. Whether the shots fall or not is another thing, but his minutes will be there (over 30 minutes in each of the last three games) and so will the shots – 16 FGA on November 22 against the 76ers and 16 FGA on November 22. 24 against the Trail Blazers.

The Lakers play at the third-fastest pace in the league and are in the middle of the road defensively. It’s not that they’re bad defensively, but considering it’s regular season, this veteran team doesn’t put in maximum effort every night. Veterans don’t even dress every night. Westbrook only plays every night because he’s the new kid on the block. Anthony Davis and LeBron James could play and they could sit down, or they play but barely play because these are the 7-12 Kings after all. All of this to say that Buddy Hield should be in a favorable location for DFS purposes on Friday night.


UTIL plays

Antony Davis ($ 11,400)

If the big three of LA play, Davis suffers the least. That being said, even with Davis ‘numbers taking the smallest hit when the three are on the pitch, it will be hard to consider signing one of the Lakers’ stars in for the captain. Of course, if LeBron James sits down, then all systems are working for Davis and no statistical analysis is needed. However, if all three are playing, why is Davis safer?

The why is simple. Davis has a role in court. His rebound rate is 14.1% with the three on the court and 15.2% without LeBron James on the court – not much change. His use rate takes a small hit from 28.5% to 25.8%, but overall he’s stable and productive with his game relying heavily on rebounds and a high shooting percentage. While LeBron depends on dropping low probability shots, fewer rebounds, and Russell Westbrook not heating up. Plus, there’s a chance that only Davis and Westbrook will get dressed or that LeBron will let loose. James is unlikely to play without Westbrook or Davis on Friday. Unless Anthony Davis pulls one of his frequent Mr. Glass routines out and quits sooner.

De’Aaron Fox ($ 8,600)

To say the least, Fox has been disappointing this season. However, there is an advantage, if he ever decides to go out. There are some valuable games on that slate that get Fox to fit into most lineups with a few Lakers stars. No one doubts Fox’s talent, but Luke Walton’s slow-motion offense hasn’t worked very well for Fox or the Kings. Fox didn’t do much better under Alvin Gentry, but this is only the third game of the new regime.

In his second game with Gentry, Fox was 8-for-13 from the field with two rebounds and six assists, but he only played 27 minutes because he was ejected. Even though he played the entire game, he wasn’t able to break the slate with that score. However, this type of performance does not come very far from securing a place in the winning roster on a Showdown slate.

Fox leads the team in minutes per game (35) and the next player closest to his 28% utilization rate is Buddy Hield at 24%. Harrison Barnes has the third highest utilization rate (21%), but it’s questionable for Friday and some of that work will likely go to Fox. This is a point of acceleration against an average defense. It would be a mistake to overlook the Kings’ best player at an affordable price.

Alex Len ($ 1,000)

Richaun Holmes ($ 7,200) was unable to play on Wednesday due to a knee injury and is questionable for Friday’s game. Alex Len took the start against the Trail Blazers, but he didn’t see much action. However, in his 17 minutes, Len was 5 for 6 on the pitch with three rebounds, two assists and one block. How can we be confident that Len will get minutes on Friday night? We can’t, but his limited action on Wednesday was a direct result of a foul issue – he made two quick fouls to start the second half and got shot. If Holmes sits down again and Len stays clear of fouling issues, it will easily be one of the best value games on the Showdown slate. Even though Holmes is playing and Len is getting closer to 20 minutes by 30 minutes, he can still work. In three of his last four games, he’s averaged 14.6 minutes and 19.2 DKFP. That’s 1.3 FPPM and it will work with just 15 minutes, but at 25 minutes that rate breaks the slate with 32.8 DKFP for a $ 1,000 player.


Molten

LeBron James ($ 11,200 CP; $ 10,500)

Go big or go home. It’s a bold move that will either hit the slate or lead to queues far from the cash line. In fact, if James leaves and owns properties, the queues without him will end near the bottom. However, James wears the Q tag again in Friday night’s game.

Long before the Lakers injury report was announced, it looked like it would be a day off for James, or at the very least, it would be a light night for him. Now that he’s moot again, he’s very unlikely to dress and if he does, how much will he push him against the Kings? The Lakers are just seven favorite points at home on DraftKings Sportsbook. That line is low, and it looks like the Sportsbook doesn’t think LeBron James is going to try Friday night.


The result

The Lakers aren’t good, but they’re not bad either. NBA fans expect this team to win every night, but they don’t have the list to run the league. They certainly won’t win every night, if LeBron James rarely plays. Eventually everything will be fine, but for now it will be a night-to-night struggle. However, at home against inferior opponents, this team has more than enough firepower to win without LeBron.

Final score: Lakers 118, Kings 110

Define your DraftKings the fantastic basketball lineups here: NBA Showdown $ 120,000 Fadeaway [$30K to 1st] (SAC vs. LAL)


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