The NBA Rundown – FanDuel & DraftKings NBA DFS Picks – May 7, 2021 (5/7/21)
In this article, we will be breaking down some of our favorite plays on the slate at their positions. Please note that players on DraftKings have multi-position eligibility and may not always match their position on FanDuel. Remember to always keep your eye on the news as the day progresses as NBA news changes the slate frequently.
Kemba Walker – Jaylen Brown is once again ruled out for this game so we can expect a small boost to Kemba Walker once again. Walker returned from a four-game absence due to a oblique strain on Wednesday and played well, shooting 61% from the field over his 28 minutes, scoring 46.25 fantasy points. With Jaylen Brown out, Walker carries at 30.9% usage rate and averages 1.21 fantasy points per minute. The Bulls have allowed 47.6% shooting from the field this year to guards.
Austin Rivers – The Nuggets are another team fighting the injury bug and the reality is once we get this deep into the season, our DFS play is going to revolve pretty much solely around who is getting the boosts from injuries. With the Nuggets already having lost Jamal Murray and Monte Morris they now have lost Will Barton and PJ Dozier. In the games Rivers has played with the Nuggets, he is averaging near 30 minutes per contest, though his last game out against the Knicks was the first time he really let his shot fly as he attempted 13 shots from the field, making seven for 25/3/3. The price didn’t rise much here at all, going from just $3,400 to $3,700 and with no changes to the Denver rotation, Rivers ends up being one of the easier plug-and-play options on this slate.
Delon Wright – Every game is a little unclear on whether or not De’Aaron Fox will return from Covid protocols, but he still has not and no reports of him being cleared for Friday are out yet so we are just going to move forward under the assumption of him being out again. With Tyrese Haliburton also injured, Delon Wright has been the main, and really only reliable guard for the Kings. In Wright’s last two starts, he has played an average of 38.5 minutes, nearing a triple-double in both games and having an insane five steal per game average. Wright has scored 55 and 55.5 fantasy points over his last two games and while those came against teams who struggle against the point guard position more than the Spurs, Wright is still carrying an elite ceiling despite his price rising. Over his last four games, Wright is averaging 15.3/6.3/6.5/3.3/1.5.
Armoni Brooks – The Rockets are going to be a hard team to discuss today because they currently have 13 players listed on their injury report. You read that correctly, 13. While some are just listed as questionable, there are also several already listed as out, including Kevin Porter Jr. This likely opens up as many minutes as Brooks can handle tonight, if the Rockets can field enough players to avoid a forfeit in this one that is. Brooks in his last game out against the Sixers played 31 minutes, scoring 20 points with two boards and an assist. In the last two games that Brooks has seen over 30 minutes, he is averaging 15 shot attempts per game. The matchup with Milwaukee isn’t the best, but the pace should be quick enough here. Brooks may end up being forced into near 40 minutes of action, but we will need the injury report to settle down a bit first.
DeMar DeRozan – I have to be honest I am not entirely in love with the Small Forward position tonight. Jimmy Butler is still questionable here, Khris Middleton is returning from a one-game absence but against an injury-depleted Rockets team, and Michael Porter Jr is in a decent spot, but not in the best matchup. That leaves us with DeMar DeRozan who is coming off of just playing 18 minutes against the Jazz on Wednesday. The Spurs lost this game by 32, so we can consider this as a maintenance day in a blowout. The matchup against the Kings is a positive one here, as the Kings are allowing over 117 points per game, but this matchup is even better if Harrison Barnes was to miss another game. With Derrick White injured, DeRozan is averaging 1.15 fantasy points per minute player and around a 26% usage rate. I don’t think you need to necessarily spend up at SF today, but DeRozan does offer an interesting ceiling here and falls in line as a great tournament play.
Naji Marshall – In games where Brandon Ingram doesn’t take the floor, Naji Marshall is averaging around a 17% usage rate and 32.05 fantasy points per game – or 11.8/7.2/4.6/1.3. With Ingram already ruled out here, it is reasonable to expect Marshall to either enter the starting five or at least be one of the highest usage players of the bench. The Pelicans just inked Marshall to a three-year deal and over Marshall’s last six games he is averaging around 23 minutes and 23 fantasy points. Look for a minutes and usage boost tonight at a price-point that has leveled back into the lower $4,000 range.
Power Forward / Center
Zion Williamson – As mentioned above, Brandon Ingram is out for this game so if you want to look for the biggest boost on the floor due to this injury look no further than Zion Williamson. With no Ingram, Williamson is averaging a usage of 34% and a 1.41 fantasy point per minute. Over the last six games, Zion is averaging 35.1 minutes per game, which is two minutes above his season average of 33. Assuming Zion plays at his FPPM rate, we are looking at 50 fantasy points based around this alone. The matchup with the Sixers isn’t the best on paper, but Zion has now scored 20 or more points in 15 straight games. To me, Zion remains the highest floor option on each slate.
Mo Bamba – The Magic are decimated when it comes to injuries to their big men and we can add Wendell Carter to that list as well now as he has also been ruled out of Friday’s contest. Bamba over his last two games is averaging near 50 fantasy points per, while shooting over 50% from the field – both of these games also have come with 15 rebounds in each. The price is up a little bit here but not enough to worry at $6,100. A matchup with the Hornets sets Bamba up pretty well here and with all the injuries to consider, he should be locked into the starting role.
Naz Reid – Reid has been bounced around in the Minnesota rotation with Jarred Vanderbilt as both have tried to carve out their role as the primary backup to Karl Anthony-Towns. Over Reid’s last two games he has averaged 23.5 minutes and 13.5 shots per game, scoring 29.25 and 30.75 fantasy points at just a $3,600 price point. Jaden McDaniels is another guy who has been covering big minutes for the TWolves, averaging 30.4 minutes over his last five games. However, McDaniels is going to miss this game, so Vanderbilt and Reid will now share the Power Forward duties as well as center minutes. I lean Reid here as he has been a little more consistent, but Vanderbilt is also a guy in play.