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By Jon Jensen - 6 years ago in NBA News, NBA Winning Strategy

NBA Tankers Top Targets

There are several factors to look at heading into the last 20 games of the NBA season for DFS.  With eight teams showing drastic signs of tanking combining for over 45 straight losses in the month of February.  Mark Cuban got fined $600,000 by the NBA for coming out on a podcast saying the Mavericks were tanking.  Even the Memphis Grizzlies have lost every game in the month of February for the first time in decades.  It’s hard to remember a time when the NBA had this many teams that were this dreadful.   There is currently eight teams on pace to win fewer than 30 games this year.  That has never happened in a full 82-game NBA season.  DKLegends will break down nine teams along with some key notes on players you might want to look at or target for NBA DFS moving forward.  Here is a list composed of the nine teams tanking in order.

9. Chicago Bulls

The Bulls traded Nikola Mirotic before the trade deadline and are now sitting Robin Lopez and Justin Holiday indefinitely.  These are strong signs of tank value for DFS players .

Zach Lavine–  Lavine is the only true star talent the Bulls have.  He should finish the year off strong since he is in a contract year and trying to showcase for a new contract.

David Nwaba–  Look for Nwaba to get a ton of minutes with Holiday out indefinitely.  Nwaba is not a pure scorer but does rebound well and get steals.  Get him in your roster before his salary increases drastically. 28.6 DKFP over last ten days and averaging close to 34 minutes.

Cristiano Felicio–  Felicio won’t necessarily play big minutes but his price is cheap and the Bulls really don’t have any other true centers.  He is now starting with Robin Lopez out indefinitely and look for him to get around 15-25 DKFP.  He is still a very raw player, but getting better every week.

8. New York Knicks

The Knicks have lost eight straight games and have fallen below .400 on the year for the first time.  With Kristaps Porzingis out for the season this should help parachute the Knicks down the ladder to be even more terrible.  The problem is that the Knicks started the season off playing rather well, making it hard to jump the teams that began this season made for tanking.  The Knicks only hope is to battle the Bulls for eighth or ninth place.  The Knicks had struggles at the guard position, so now it’s time to see what some of these young guards on their roster can do.

Emmanuel Mudiay–  Mudiay has a great chance to finish the season off well and making the Knicks think about rostering him for a future role.  He has averaged 30.0 DKFP over the last ten days and is finally starting to see around 30 mins a night the last three games.

Trey Burke–  Burke can score and is fast.  It is starting to look like he has found his way in this league, and may soon become a real threat.  Over the last three games Burke is averaging 38 DKFP in only 25-30 minutes.  His salary is on the rise so strongly think about rostering him before it is too late.

7.  Brookly Nets

Let’s be real the Nets are bad folks.  The Nets don’t even have an incentive to be bad since Cleveland owns the right to their first overall pick.  Even if they finish around seventh the Nets have a 15% chance of a top three pick.  The Nets have lost eight straight and even though they found a great player this year in Spencer Dinwiddie, they clearly don’t have enough to compete with even decent teams around the league.  The Nets won’t really sit their starters because of no true incentive for the team.

Spencer Dinwiddie–  Look for Dinwiddie to continue his strong campaign this year and remain in the starting line up.  He is a guy that can have low ownership sometimes and put up big numbers.

D’Angelo Russell–  He basically was hurt most of the season and has recently returned.  Russell is getting back to 30 plus minutes a night and is another guy that can score and put up big numbers.  Look for his salary to continue to rise as he gets back into basketball form.

Jarett Allen–  Brooklyn had a Center problem all year long ranking close to last in that category.  With Booker getting let go and Okafor hurt again Allen has shown signs of becoming a true talent in the NBA.  He is very raw but has some great basketball agility for a big man.  Look for Allen to continue starting and getting better every week.  His numbers should begin to become more and more consistent and someone to think about when that right match up arises.

6.  Memphis Grizzlies

The Grizz have lost every game in the month of February making that the first time in decades the team has accomplished that horrible feat.  They fired their coach this year, traded Randolph, Mike Conley has been hurt for basically two seasons, shut down Tyreke Evans, and are most likely shutting Marc Gasol down any moment.  I forgot to mention Chandler Parsons who will probably never be the same player he once was again.  The Grizzlies are tanking, and falling fast.  There is some guys to target and some of them have been playing rather well.

JaMychal Green– Green has been playing great basketball as of late and is averaging 32.8 DKFP over his last ten days.   He is finally getting 30 plus minutes and can be rostered, especially against favorable match-ups.

Andrew Harrison–  Harrison is going to be getting heavy minutes to close off the season.  He is averaging 29.9 DKFP over his last ten days and it looks to be the clear starting PG for the Grizz.

5.  Orlando Magic

The Magic are clearly a dysfunctional team on the court, the Magic defense is bad, but they can score the ball.  Aaron Gordon is playing for a huge contract this year, but he has to stay healthy.  Frank Vogel is most likely coaching for his job next year with an almost entirely new front office.  The Magic have some talent on this squad with Fournier, Vucevic, Gordon, and Simmons so look for them to tank and try and get a top draft pick (Most likely a PG).  They will still roll out their starters on a nightly basis so look for several players to finish strong.

Aaron Gordon–  He is back after the all star break and has been averaging close to 37 DKFP per game.  Like I stated above he is in a contract year and will have his minutes moved back up to over 30 per game.  Look for Gordon to finish strong and have some big games before the year ends.

Nikola Vucevic–  Vucevic is averaging 33.4 DKFP since returning from a long injury stint.  He is a solid player that has the potential to go off on any given night.  Vucevic should finish the year with a strong campaign.

4.  Dallas Mavericks

Rick Carlisle is a tactician so if anyone can draw up a losing game plan, it is him.  Dallas is not normally used to this tanking thing, as you can tell as Mark Cuban got fined $600,000 for his team tanking comments on a recent podcast.  Wesley Matthews, Dirk, and Harrison Barnes are all starting to see their minutes decrease as the season closes.

Dennis Smith Jr.–  He should continue to still see some heavy run as Dallas tries to make him the PG of their future.  He has been a little low on scoring coming off an injury but has still posted a solid 25 DKFP over his last ten days. Expect that to increase with Barnes and Matthews getting less minutes, meaning more shots for Smith Jr.

Jose Juan Barea–  Barea has been on a tear lately playing great basketball.  Look for him to continue his 33.2 DKFP over his last ten days in trying to showcase himself for teams next year, because he probably won’t be in Dallas much longer as the team tries to get younger talent.

Dwight Powell–  Powell is another guy that is finally hitting his stride in the NBA.  He is averaging 28.2 DKFP over his last ten days but has seen a heavy increase in minutes over his last three games.  In those three games of 30 plus minutes he posted 30 plus DKFP making him a solid target with potentially low ownership.

3.  Atlanta Hawks

The Hawks have been quietly one of the most consistently awful teams all season.  They are young, raw, and dysfunctional on offense.  They aren’t totally embarrassing, but have some major work to do.

John Collins–  With waiving Ersan Ilysova last week the Hawks are committed to giving Collins more playing time.  Collins can score and has the ability to put up solid numbers.  He hasn’t been that efficient as of late posting 25.3 DKFP but that number should surely rise in the weeks to come.  If the match-up is right, roster him.

Taurean Prince–  Prince is primed to be a great player in this league.  He is long, athletic, plays defense, and can put up stats all across the board.  One of my favorite targets to finish the year.  He has posted a whopping 34.8 DKFP over his last ten days and look for that trend to continue.

2.  Sacramento Kings

For most of the season the Kings have had a net rating below -10 which is historically bad.  The Kings got rid of George Hill to open the door for D. Fox and have actually played slightly better with the veterans off the court.  They have some young potential, but a lot is going to be riding on their top pick in the draft.

Bogdan Bogdanovic–  Bogs had a recent run of 30 plus DKFP for six straight games, which is a good sign for Sacramento.  If he continues to see solid minutes, then he should produce solid numbers.

Justin Jackson–  Jackson is finally starting to see the floor on a nightly basis and is averaging just over 20 DKFP per game over his last ten.  Look for him as a solid cheap option when nice match-ups occur.

De’Aaron Fox–  Fox was Sacramento’s lottery pick in the draft and with Hill gone, his production is rising.  Look for this trend to continue as the very young Kings continue to learn how to play basketball together.  He has the potential to put up big numbers and also big busts, so buyer beware of the match-up.

Skai Labissiere-  Skai has come off his injury seeing minutes increase and his production as well.  He can score and be a great affordable option

1. Phoenix Suns

This is the worst team in the NBA since the ten win 76’ers season in 2015-16.  You would think you could chalk this up to youth on the team, but they have had several of these young guys for several years now.  It is crazy that they may not even get the worst record in the NBA.  The Suns are tied with the Hawks and Sacramento for the worst records in the League, but are clearly awful.  They made a move to get Elfrid Payton at the trade deadline, but that only puts a bandaid or blindfold on what people are really looking at.  You might say they made that move just so the true Suns fans will continue showing up to games.

Josh Jackson–  He has been a monster since starting and getting heavy minutes.  Jackson has posted 34.2 DKFP over his last ten days and showing why he was a lottery pick.  Don’t get me wrong he has a lot to learn and makes plenty of mistakes, but this kid can ball.  He should have the opportunity to finish the year strong and make a case as a prime player going into next season.

Alex Len–  It looks like Tyson Chandler is shut down for the season and opened the door for Len to start at Center.  His 26.1 DKFP over his last ten days is a little skewed considering two of those games he posted an 8 and 8.5 DKFP.  If Len has a good match-up, he can be a force down low.

Dragan Bender–  Bender has recently joined the starting rotation and has started somewhat slow.  He is only posting a 20.1 DKFP over his last ten days, which isn’t that great considering he is getting 28.7 minutes.  But this kid has the ability to shoot the ball.  His salary is still low enough to take on as a flier or punt play in GPP’s and hope he hits 3’s.


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