The NBA Player Models are the lifeblood of our NBA product. They house our projections for each player, but that’s just the beginning of what you’ll find inside. You’ll also find our Trends and On/Off tool, Vegas Dashboard, and so much more.
Let’s dive into our models for NBA DFS going position by position, looking at guys with some of the highest ceiling projections and players standing out as values with our predictive Projected Plus/Minus metric.
Also, don’t forget that for large-field tournaments, you can utilize our Lineup Optimizer to effortlessly create up to 300 lineups, or use our Lineup Builder if you like to hand-build your teams.
Note: Projections and Leverage Scores/Ratings may change throughout the day as news comes out after this article is posted. Consult the Player Models directly for any updates.
Top Ceiling: Kyrie Irving vs. Memphis Grizzlies – $10,500 DraftKings, $9,600 FanDuel
Irving has the highest ceiling projections of all point guards on Monday’s slate, but he is listed as questionable with right foot soreness. Be sure to monitor the latest news and updates leading up to game time, but if he plays, he brings a ton of upside.
Irving has played 11 games for Dallas and is averaging 45.8 DraftKings points and 44.5 FanDuel points per game since his arrival at a rate of 1.18 FanDuel points and 1.21 DraftKings points per minute. In his two games without Luka Doncic (thigh), he had 36.25 and 43.25 DraftKings points against the Clippers and the Kings.
If he can get back on the floor in what should be a good matchup, Kyrie brings a very high ceiling since he’ll have to carry the weight of the Mavericks’ offense.
Top Value: Killian Hayes vs. Indiana Pacers – $5,700 DraftKings, $6,400 FanDuel
Almost all the value on the slate this Monday is in one matchup. The Pistons and the Pacers play fast and don’t play much defense, so it would be a good game environment even if they had all their usual starters available. That isn’t the case, though, as the Pistons will be without Bojan Bogdanovic (Achilles), Alec Burks (foot), Hamidou Diallo (ankle), Marvin Bagley III (ankle), Isaiah Stewart (shoulder), and Jaden Ivey (health and safety protocols). The Pacers will also be shorthanded, so there should be a ton of value available on both sides of this matchup.
Hayes has the second-highest projected Plus/Minus at point guard on both DraftKings and FanDuel, and he should be at the helm for the Pistons as one of the few options in the backcourt.
He moved back into the starting lineup on Saturday in their first of two straight games vs. the Pacers and played 36 minutes on his way to 17 points, 13 assists, 49 DraftKings points, and 47.7 FanDuel points. He hasn’t shot the ball particularly well this season, but he will get all the playmaking opportunities to pile up counting stats in this matchup. He’s projected for a 26.3% usage rate and 35.2 minutes, so he has excellent potential to outproduce salary-based expectations.
Hayes also stands out as one of the best options of the day in our PrizePicks and Underdog Fantasy simulations:
Top Ceiling: Devin Booker at Golden State Warriors – $10,100 DraftKings, $10,700 FanDuel
On Both DraftKings and FanDuel, Booker has the second-highest ceiling projection at shooting guard, behind only Irving. If Kyrie is out or you don’t trust him, Booker is an excellent pivot who comes a bit cheaper than Irving on DraftKings.
Booker has been hot lately, scoring over 30 points in five straight contests and posting an average Plus/Minus of +10.3 DraftKings points and +10.1 FanDuel points. During that run, he has averaged 36.0 points per game while shooting a blistering 59.8% from the field and producing an average of 1.63 FanDuel points and 1.66 DraftKings points per minute.
Booker has played in two of the Suns’ three wins over the Warriors this season. In their first meeting, Booker had 34 points, seven assists, and 45.25 DraftKings points. In the second, he had 29 points, nine assists, and 48.5 DraftKings points.
Without Kevin Durant (ankle), Booker will remain the focus of the offense, and he should continue to find plenty of space to produce big stat lines, especially in big games like this one. This seems like a spot to prioritize building around Booker.
Top Value: Andrew Nembhard at Detroit Pistons – $5,000 DraftKings, $4,900 FanDuel
The Pacers already ruled out Tyrese Haliburton (knee), Bennedict Mathurin (ankle), T.J. McConnell (back), and Myles Turner (back), and they also added Buddy Hield (foot) to the injury report as questionable. A matchup with the Pistons would have already made Nembhard an interesting option, but with so much usage available, especially in the backcourt, the rookie becomes almost a must-play.
Nembhard has the highest projected Plus/Minus of any player on the DraftKings slate and comes in second on FanDuel behind only teammate Isaiah Jackson. He has eligibility at both guard spots on both sites and can fit into almost any roster build given his upside.
Nembhard had 19 points, eight assists, 34.75 DraftKings points, and 32.6 FanDuel points on Saturday in this same matchup without Haliburton and McConnell. He has shown his defense can be elite, but he should also be in store for much more usage and playmaking responsibilities in this ideal matchup.
Top Ceiling: Jayson Tatum at Houston Rockets – $10,900 DraftKings, $11,000 FanDuel
The fact that Tatum brings a high ceiling and is a strong play isn’t surprising. Still, it is noteworthy that he has the highest ceiling projection on both DraftKings and FanDuel, beating out Kyrie, Booker, and Giannis Antetkounmpo.
Part of that high ceiling stems from a juicy matchup against the Rockets, which gives the Celtics the third-highest Implied Team Total on the slate.
Tatum has been outstanding all season but has picked up his fantasy production with work on the glass since the All-Star break, partially due to the absence of Robert Williams. In his eight games since the break, Tatum has six double-doubles and has averaged 1.4 DraftKings points and 1.33 FanDuel points per minute.
He had 34 points, 15 rebounds, 63 FanDuel points, and 67.25 DraftKings points in his most recent game on Saturday and has scored 30 points in both games since returning from a one-game absence.
Top Value: Chris Duarte at Detroit Pistons – $4,200 DraftKings, $4,400 FanDuel
Duarte is even cheaper than Nembhard and should also be in for a dramatically increased workload for the Pacers in this matchup, especially if Hield also sits out. With more work coming his way, the second-year wing has the highest projected Plus/Minus at small forward on both FanDuel and DraftKings and the second-highest on both sites at shooting guard behind only Nembhard.
After a strong rookie year, Duarte has battled injury this season and has been limited to only 19.7 minutes per game in 44 games. He did get the start on Saturday but only shot 2-for-11 from the field on his way to 14.5 DraftKings points and 13.2 FanDuel points. He had been more productive recently before that downer and should be able to bounce back Monday.
His potential volume gives him plenty of upside at a very affordable rate.
Top Ceiling: Giannis Antetokounmpo at Sacramento Kings – $11,900 DraftKings, $11,800 FanDuel
It’s very unusual to have Giannis on the board and not have the highest ceiling projection available, but that’s the situation on Monday. He has missed the Bucks’ three most recent games with hand soreness and an illness, and he’s also questionable for this contest.
If he plays, he should be in a good spot since the Kings-Bucks matchup has the highest over/under on the slate. He has produced a slate-leading 1.67 FanDuel points and 1.76 DraftKings points per minute this season, and if he’s back at full strength, he can go off and break the slate.
Since he has been sidelined, he also could come with lower ownership, meaning this could turn into a spot to go against the flow and find some good leverage with Giannis if he does indeed play through his hand issue.
Top Value: Isaiah Livers vs. Indiana Pacers – $5,300 DraftKings, $5,000 FanDuel
Along with Hayes, Livers is getting a chance to step into a more prominent role for the Pistons due to all their injuries. He brings the highest projected Plus/Minus at power forward on DraftKings and the second-highest at small forward. On FanDuel, he’s only eligible at power forward, where he has the second-highest projected Plus/Minus.
Livers has started each of the last five games for the Pistons, averaging 21.3 DraftKings points and 20.1 FanDuel points per game. He came up huge on Saturday, though, with 18 points, four rebounds, four steals, and two blocks on his way to 43.8 FanDuel points and 39.5 DraftKings points.
With so many of his teammates sidelined, he’s projected for over 35 minutes on Monday in a great matchup with the Pacers, so he’s another excellent value option from that contest.
Top Ceiling: Domantas Sabonis vs. Milwaukee Bucks – $9,800 DraftKings, $10,000 FanDuel
Sabonis and the Kings host the Bucks and potentially Giannis on Monday night. He brings the second-highest ceiling projection at center behind only Giannis on DraftKings, and he owns the highest ceiling at the position by roughly 5.5 points on FanDuel.
Sabonis had been putting up great numbers until struggling Saturday night against the Suns. Sacramento still won, but Sabonis only managed 35.5 DraftKings points. Before that, he had at least 50 DraftKings points in five straight games, averaging 1.43 DraftKings points and 1.42 FanDuel points per minute.
With or without Giannis, the Bucks won’t be an easy matchup for Sabonis. However, it should be a competitive game, and the Kings will need him to dip into his diverse skillset to put up big numbers. He had back-to-back triple-doubles in his two most recent home games against the Pelicans and Knicks, and he has that kind of ceiling in this matchup Monday.
Top Value: Isaiah Jackson at Detroit Pistons – $4,600 DraftKings, $4,600 FanDuel
Jackson is only a power forward on FanDuel and only a center on DraftKings, but wherever he is eligible, he’s an elite value play against the injury-depleted Pistons’ frontcourt. He has the highest projected Plus/Minus on the entire slate on FanDuel and the second-highest behind only Nembhard on DraftKings.
On Saturday, Jackson posted one of his best games of the season, totaling 45.7 FanDuel points and 43.75 DraftKings points on 19 points, 11 rebounds, two steals, and two blocks in just 25 minutes.
At this salary, it makes sense to go back to the well on Monday. The Pacers will likely continue to feed the high-energy big man from Kentucky as they try to see how he can fit into their continued rebuilding plans.