Thursday features a one-game showdown slate featuring the Toronto Raptors at Milwaukee Bucks in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals at 8:30 p.m. ET on TNT.
If you’re new to single-game formats, be sure to check out the following pieces by Matt LaMarca:
- 5 Tips to Dominate the DraftKings NBA Showdown Format
- How Does the Single-Game NBA Format on FanDuel Differ From DraftKings?
Neither the Raptors nor Drake’s trolling can stop Giannis Antetokounmpo from being the premier DFS play in this series.
Giannis is averaging 22.8 points, 16.0 rebounds, 5.8 assists, 3.0 blocks and 1.3 steals through the first four games and has exceeded salary-based expectations in each. His Projected Plus/Minus is nearly three times as high as any other player on the slate, and being back on his home turf means he won’t have to deal with the sideline antics of his nemesis, Drizzy.
Milwaukee’s second-half lull in Game 4 afforded a banged up Kawhi Leonard 14 minutes of game-time rest, causing him to miss out on hitting value for just the second time since April 21. Nevertheless, DraftKings has bumped up Kawhi’s salary by $200 to $11,400, which leaves him ranked an uncharacteristic fourth in Projected Plus/Minus.
Kawhi is still an optimal play — Showdown slates favor a studs-and-scrubs approach — but our NBA Player Models project him to register just over 13 DraftKings points fewer than Giannis.
The Leonard trade isn’t the only one paying major dividends for Raptors President Masai Ujuri; Marc Gasol‘s contributions of 10.3 points, 8.5 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 2.5 blocks per game have been crucial for Toronto in this series.
Gasol is a top-three value and also leads all players on the slate with a +4.17 Opponent Plus/Minus.
Pascal Siakam might be the favorite for the Most Improved Player award, but this series has made it clear that his outside shooting and playmaking still need work: He’s averaging just 13.8 points in 35.7 minutes and shooting 22.2% from deep.
With Siakam struggling and the franchise’s first NBA Finals appearance hanging in the balance, Raptors coach Nick Nurse has begun to rely more on Serge Ibaka. The Phan Model rates Ibaka as the top option in the $4,500-$6,500 range on DraftKings.
George Hill has outplayed Eric Bledsoe this series, averaging a 10.5/4.5/2.8 line and shooting 52.0% from the field while Bledsoe is posting 8.5/4.3/4.0 and shooting 24.4%. Hill played 27 minutes to Bledsoe’s 20 in Game 4 and is now has a 28.9-28.2 edge over Bledsoe in minutes per game in the series.
Our models have Hill as the clear-cut second-ranked value in Game 5 while Bledsoe clocks in at No. 8.
Just as Bledsoe has been giving way to Hill, Danny Green has been ceding time to Norman Powell. Green scored just 4 points in 25 minutes in Game 4 — his sixth straight game being held to 8 or fewer points — while Powell dropped 18 points in 32 minutes, his third straight game of scoring 14-plus. Powell projects for the second-best Plus/Minus among players priced $2,100-$6,500 on DraftKings.
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 forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34)
Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports