Wednesday offers a one-game slate of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals featuring the Toronto Raptors at Milwaukee Bucks 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?
Giannis Antetokounmpo leads all players on the slate in Projected Plus/Minus as well as projected floor, median and ceiling. The Greek Freak hung an average of 27.0 points, 16.0 rebounds and 5.0 assists on the Raptors in regular-season meetings.
Fresh off his single-handed destruction of the 76ers, Kawhi Leonard trails only Giannis in Projected Plus/Minus. He averaged 22.0 points, 7.3 rebounds, 4.0 assists, 3.3 steals and 0.7 blocks in 37.2 minutes across three meetings with the Bucks during the regular season. That production should be expected to increase, not necessarily because we probably all have Kawhi recency bias whether we realize it or not, but because he’s capable of logging huge minutes; he played over 40 three times against Philly, and our NBA Player Models have him projected for a slate-leading 42.5 in Game 1.
Khris Middleton averaged a solid 14.0/5.3/6.5 line in four matchups with the Raptors this season. He is a top-five value on the slate.
Kyle Lowry struggled against the Bucks this season, scoring just 19 points in 102 minutes on 7-of-30 (23.3%) shooting while also committing 12 turnovers. His only saving graces were 25 assists and 15 rebounds. That said, his modest $7,400 salary slots in him third in the Projected Plus/Minus rankings for tonight’s game.
Though all four games came before the Marc Gasol acquisition, Serge Ibaka destroyed the Bucks during the regular season to the tune of 22.3 points, 8.5 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 1.8 blocks and 1.0 steal in 33.9 minutes per game. With Pascal Siakam (who is also a top-five value in this game) playing tentatively in Game 7 versus Philly, Ibaka’s playing time jumped to 29 minutes, and our models have him projected for 27.5 in Game 1 against Milwaukee.
Eric Bledsoe has been up and down against the Raptors this season, but he did put up a 14/8/6 line with 4 steals in the last meeting on Jan. 31. He’s a solid mid-range tourney play.
Ersan Ilyasova is the top value among players under $7,400. Ilyasova is averaging a +9.21 Plus/Minus with a perfect 100% Consistency Rating over his last 10 games.
Fred VanVleet is the top value among punt plays priced lower than Ilyasova. VanVleet was one of only two bench players used by coach Nick Nurse in Game 7 against Philly.
Brook Lopez is a good buy-low candidate for guaranteed prize pools, as his salary has dropped $2,200 since the last game of the Detroit series, and it literally can’t get any worse than his 0-point, 0-rebound performance in 18 minutes last game against Boston.
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Pictured above:Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34, left), Toronto Raptors forward Kawhi Leonard (2, right)
Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports