Saturday’s NBA slate features Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals between the Milwaukee Bucks and Toronto Raptors at 8:30 p.m. ET on TNT.
If you’re new to single-game formats, be sure to check out my previous work on the subject:
- 5 Tips to Dominate the DraftKings NBA Showdown Format
- How Does the Single-Game NBA Format on FanDuel Differ From DraftKings?
Milwaukee Bucks @ Toronto Raptors (-1) — 213.5 total
Kawhi Leonard is coming off a monster performance in Game 5, scoring 63.25 DraftKings points. He scored 35 points while recording nine assists and seven rebounds, and the scary part is he didn’t even shoot that well from the field. He made just 11 of 25 field goal attempts, but he did make up for it by shooting 5-8 from 3-point range and 8-8 at the free throw line. Head Coach Nick Nurse said Kawhi was feeling better heading into that contest, and his right quad injury didn’t appear to limit him in any fashion.
That said, he’s now become more expensive than Giannis Antetokounmpo on DraftKings. Giannis has been the best fantasy asset in basketball on a per-minute basis this season, but the Raptors have done a good job of limiting him over the past two games. He’s scored just 42.5 and 53.0 DraftKings points after scoring at least 58.75 in five of his previous six games.
Rebounding is one area where it’s easy to see some positive regression for Giannis on today’s slate. He grabbed just six boards in his last contest after recording at least 10 in each of his four previous games. His current rebound prop is listed at 12.5, so expect better production on the glass in Game 6. More rebounds equals more fantasy points and should lock in a double-double.
His offensive production is a bigger question mark. The Raptors have packed the paint against him recently and dared anyone else on the Bucks to make them pay from deep. Giannis has compounded that issue by struggling at the free throw line, making just 12 of 26 attempts over the past three games. Don’t expect the Raptors’ defensive philosophy to change much in Game 6, so a big offensive explosion from Giannis seems unlikely.
Overall, choosing between Leonard and Giannis at Captain is a difficult decision. We give Giannis a slight edge in our NBA Models, but Leonard might be the safer choice. Regardless, you’re going to want both in your lineups.
This has been a rough series for the next tier of fantasy players. Kyle Lowry has been the best option, and he’s scored at least 36.75 DraftKings points in each of his past two games. That said, he relies on efficiency way more than volume for scoring fantasy points, so it’s tough for him to return value on nights where he shoots below 50%. He’s also averaged nine free throw attempts over his past two games after averaging just 3.0 during the regular season. He could be worth some fade consideration.
Khris Middleton has struggled during this series, but he could be someone worth buying low. He’s seen less of Kawhi on defense as this series has progressed, and Lowry has served as his primary defender more than any other Raptor over the past two games. He was able to score the bell well in Game 4, scoring 30 points on 11-15 shooting, but he was ice cold in Game 5. The Bucks are going to need someone besides Giannis if they want to force a Game 7 back in Milwaukee, and Middleton remains the best candidate.
Eric Bledsoe has a wide range of outcomes tonight. He could be the Bucks’ primary focal point on offense – he’s posted a usage rate of at least 28.7% in two of the past three games – but he could also find himself on the bench for long stretches. His shooting has been abysmal during the postseason, and he’ll need to make shots today if he wants to stay on the court. That said, he does have big upside for guaranteed prize pools at a pretty minimal salary. His ownership should also be reasonable.
This is the strongest area to pair with the studs on today’s slate. Marc Gasol has been priced down to just $5,600 on DraftKings after putting up a clunker in his last game, but he dominated in the two games prior. He has the best individual matchup in this series, resulting in an Opponent Plus/Minus of +3.84, and he’s shown the ability to contribute in every category across the board. He’s an elite buy-low target.
Fred VanVleet was invisible early in the playoffs, but he’s bounced back in a huge way. He’s scored at least 26.25 DraftKings points in his past two games and made a career-high seven 3-pointers in Game 5. He’s been priced up across the industry but still seems like a strong value at his current price tag.
If you’re selling Bledsoe tonight, buying George Hill seems like the optimal move. He would likely be the biggest beneficiary if Bledsoe plays his way off the court, and Hill has been productive with his playing time during the postseason. He’s averaged 0.88 DraftKings points per minute during this series and is currently projected for 28.5 minutes in our NBA Models.
Most of the guys we’ve been targeting as values during this series have been priced up recently, so this area is a little thin on today’s slate. Still, there are some options worth considering:
- Norman Powell ($3,800): He’s the strongest option in this range and should be a popular choice tonight. His playing time has increased as the series has progressed, and he’s scored at least 31.0 DraftKings points in two of his past three games.
- Ersan Ilyasova ($2,200) and Pat Connaughton ($1,800): The Bucks have essentially benched Nikola Mirotic, which makes these guys interesting options off the bench. Neither is expected to play big minutes, but they could see some additional playing time if Bledsoe gets benched.
After this piece is published, FantasyLabs is likely to provide news updates on a number of players. Be sure to stay ahead of your competition with our NBA News Feed.
Pictured above: Milwaukee Bucks F Khris Middleton (22)
Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports