NBA

3 NBA DraftKings Studs to Target on 3/3/21

While building a daily fantasy basketball lineup, it's important to make sure you find the right studs to anchor your team. As the most expensive players in your lineup, they need big-time production to match their high salaries.

You may find it hard to fit some of these guys in while staying under the salary cap, but you can check out our projections to find value players for your rosters. Let's take a look at the top high-salaried DraftKings plays of the day.

James Harden, PG, Brooklyn Nets

DraftKings Salary: $11,000

With James Harden, it really starts with the revenge narrative. Wednesday will mark the one-time MVP's first game against his former team, as his Brooklyn Nets battle the Houston Rockets on the road in Houston. But there's much more than narrative in his favor.

The Rockets' defense has continued to fall off since Christian Wood went down due to injury. Since his last game active, Houston has gone from 2nd all the way down to 25th in a month's span, allowing 118.3 points per game on the league's sixth-highest pace, according to NBA.com.

Meanwhile, Harden has been on a tear of late, averaging 29.0 points, 10.4 rebounds, 9.8 assists and 61.8 DraftKings points in his last five appearances. His minutes are up above 38 on a per-game basis, as his usage has climbed from 27.2% to 29.6% without Kevin Durant on the floor this season. It's hard not to see him leading the slate in fantasy points given all those factors.

Stephen Curry, PG, Golden State Warriors

DraftKings Salary: $9,900

In the event you are fading Harden (not for the faint of heart) in favor of a more balanced lineup, you can't go wrong with Stephen Curry and his 60-plus-point upside. While the star floor general was held to only 26 minutes, 16 points, and 37 DraftKings points in a blowout loss to the Los Angeles Lakers last time out, he preceded that with no fewer than 48.5 fantasy points in six straight. He had posted two double-doubles and a total of four 50-plus games in that span.

The game flow should dictate more minutes and production versus a Portland team that has come on of late, yet still rates out third-worst in defensive efficiency. Although Damian Lillard and the Blazers have tallied 111 or more points in 7 of the last 10, they have also given up more than 110 in the same number of contests. In fact, in the last five games alone they've allowed opponents to score an average of 118.6 points per 100 possessions.

Portland has been just as much of a boost to point guards, as FantasyPros' data tells us they have given up 27.1 points, 3.4 three-point makes, and 52.9 DraftKings points a night to the position. You can feel really good about Curry's potential in both cash and tournament formats.

Zion Williamson, PF/C, New Orleans Pelicans

DraftKings Salary: $9,100

Zion Williamson is another player you can rely on in any format. Although his salary has bumped up more than $1,000 in the last 10 games, it's definitely been warranted by his box score contributions.

In the midst of a mini-run of sorts for New Orleans, the first-time All-Star checks in tied for seventh with 29.5 points per game in the last 10, all the while adding 7.6 boards, 4.6 assists, and 1.4 blocks-plus-steals. Over that span of games, his usage has ballooned to 29.1% in route to 47.8 fantasy points a night. Zion has been a model of consistency in the way he efficiently scores inside and adds the peripherals to get him north of 45 on most nights.

All he requires is 45.5 DraftKings points to return five-times value at this salary, and that shouldn't be a problem against Chicago. The Bulls are 19th in defensive rating, and while that isn't too shabby, their top-five pace has led to them allowing the sixth-most points per game. A 236.5 over/under and a 121 implied total (per FanDuel Sportsbook) only adds to Williamson's chances of a 50-burger on Wednesday night.


Brett Oswalt is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Brett Oswalt also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username BRO14THEKID. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his/her personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.