NBA Lineup Construction 10/31/16

The NBA isn’t taking a day off for a really long time, so I’ll be here giving you lineup construction tips on how to better optimize your lineups and increase your point output. It’s tough to get away from your favorite plays, but it’s imperative that you take into account things like opportunity cost, ceilings, floors, and game theory when creating your lineups. We have a 4-game slate so I’ll point out some risk/reward scenarios that can make or break your tournament lineups. LEGGO!

Food for Thought

On a short slate like tonight, the common lineup will be one that takes a balanced approach and tries to fit in starters with secure minutes. Without knowing, this can be a great way to increase your floor but also limits your upside on a small slate. If we take a look back at the 10/27 slate with exactly four games on the slate, the three most optimal lineups included a combination of these guys; Rozier, Sefolosha, Harkless, and Crawford. They were all near minimum salary, let you afford two or three studs in your lineup, and gave you a real chance at a 320+ score. Let’s try to replicate that process today and shoot for the moon.

Opportunity Cost

I’ll lay out two lineups to show you the difference when it comes to taking a chance on low-cost options as opposed to being safe on a slate like tonight. I made the best possible lineup using a couple viable punts, then made the best possible lineup using starters with secure minutes in great spots. Here were the results:



Punt LineupStarters/Secure Lineup
PG Chris Paul – $8,500PG Kyle Lowry – $7,400
C DeAndre Jordan – $7,200PF Blake Griffin – $8,800
PF DeMarcus Cousins $10,800SF Danilo Gallinari – $6,00
PG Jeremy Lin – $6,300PG Jeremy Lin – $6,300
Projected Score – 267.70Projected Score – 264.50


Not only is the ‘Punt Lineup’ projected to score more, I have seven other lineups projected to outscore the ‘Starters/Secure Lineup’. Over the course of 150 lineups (like I play daily), these points start to add up and you gain a huge advantage. This is the perfect example of seeking upside in tournaments, and tonight is a perfect night to do so.


Guys that make it happen

The rest of the ‘Punt Lineup’ is made up of guys who play decent minutes but are close to minimum salary with the possibility of smashing their salary. If we want to reproduce the same process that won the 10/27 slate, these are the guys you should take a chance on tonight.


C Kosta KoufosSF DeMarre Carroll
C Mike MuscalaPF Nikola Mirotic
SF/PF DeMarre CarrollSG J.J. Redick
PF Nikola MiroticC Tyson Chandler
SF Matt BarnesPF Patrick Patterson
PG Austin RiversC Kosta Koufos
PF Patrick PattersonSF Bojan Bogdanovic


Hopefully this helps you guys build better GPP lineups for tonight’s short slate. Feel free to ask me any questions in the premium slack chat or on Twitter (@MLora). For being such a short slate, there’s huge prize pools across the industry so I hope to see more screenshots tonight. Till next ti