NBA Thoughts 1/4/17

Preaching Patience

A lot of questions come through our NBA Chat Channel early in the morning asking things like,  “player x or player y?”, “who are you locking in today?”, and “best DK power forwards tonight?”. I get why people ask questions like that, we all want to build our dummy rosters and start narrowing down our selections early on so that we can dig into more questions as the day progresses, but questions like those are nearly impossible to answer early in the morning eight hours before the first game tips off. Especially on prices with dynamic pricing, like DraftKings, news from one game that intuitively would have no effect on questions like “who are we spending up on tonight” can in fact influence those decisions significantly.

Let’s take tonight as an example. We’ve got several very nice options to spend up on to start our rosters at the point guard position. Russell Westbrook of course headlines this group as he does nearly every time he takes the court, Giannis Antetokounmpo has a nice matchup against the Knicks in the Garden, Steph Curry should light up the scoreboard at home against a hapless Blazers defense, and Kemba Walker has been on fire, is at home where he historically has performed much better from a fantasy perspective, and should be involved in somewhat of a shootout with Russell Westbrook and the Thunder. I’ve got these four high-end point guards projected at a similar point-per-dollar, so who I ultimately end up rostering will depend a lot on what kind of news breaks throughout the day. If a ton of value plays emerge that have a great chance of exceeding their value threshold and hitting 6-8x their salary, Russell Westbrook would become the optimal play (with his sky high ceiling and floor) to pair with the value. If no great value emerges and we cannot identify any low price players we think will crush their salary-based expectation, perhaps a balanced approach will be optimal and using both Steph Curry and Kemba Walker will be the right move. There could also conceivably be news that would make all four of these point guards sub optimal plays if point guard happens to be the position where the value emerges, in which case perhaps a guy like DeMarcus Cousins would be where we want to spend up. The point is, we need to always be patient and digest all NBA news that rolls in throughout the day, and not get locked into one player too early. Avoid tinkering with your lineups just for the sake of it, but do have an idea of where else you can pivot to at each position if unexpected news breaks opening up value. And always remember to consider the entire construction of your roster, not just the players in the game that will be directly effected by the news.