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DraftKings Daily Fantasy Basketball Picks (10/19/21): NBA DFS Lineups

Giannis Antetokounmpo

Happy Tuesday and Happy New Season, RotoBallers! If it only feels like yesterday when the Milwaukee Bucks wrapped up their NBA Finals win over the Phoenix Suns, you are not alone and not far off. That's because it was only 90 yesterdays ago, and here we are again, back for another season. This year is my third year as part of the Rotoballer NBA DFS coverage, and I can't wait for the new campaign as I try to help you get back in the green and take down some contests.

As is usually the case with Opening Nights, the schedule provides two marquee matchups for us to dive into. First up, it's an Eastern Conference Semifinals rematch between the Nets and the Bucks before the revamped Warriors try to show they're coming back strong with a Western Conference showdown against the Los Angeles Lakers. All four teams have an implied total of over 110 points, so I'm predicting a strong night of DFS scoring on a tiny, two-game schedule.

This article will provide you with my daily fantasy basketball lineup picks for DraftKings on 10/19/21. You can also check out today's FanDuel lineup picks. Remember to monitor injury news as the slate can completely change before lineups lock.

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DraftKings Guards - NBA DFS Lineup Picks

James Harden - PG/SG, BKN at MIL ($9,300)

There's an alternate timeline where James Harden doesn't sprain his ankle in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals, and he's the one receiving his NBA Championship ring on Opening Night. But, alas, it was not meant to be, and now he will be playing the role of spoiler as Milwaukee revels in their rewards.

One thing I know for sure: Harden is going to thrive without Kyrie Irving playing for the Nets. While he will be sharing the court with Kevin Durant (ever heard of him?), he's still going to get his points and be a building block every time he takes the floor.

James Harden's DK PPG (2018-2021)
Season Games DK PPG
2018 72 50.51
2019 78 55.94
2020 68 54.14
2021 44 50.18

In his short tenure on the Nets last year (36 games), the Beard averaged 24.6 points, 10.9 assists, 8.5 rebounds, and 1.3 steals per contest. This game between Brooklyn and Milwaukee has a significantly higher over/under (237.5 points) than the Golden State-Los Angeles game (228 points). It pushes my attention towards this matchup and Harden as one of the centerpieces of my Opening Night lineup.

Kendrick Nunn - PG/SG, LAL vs. GSW ($4,300)

Note: Nunn (ankle) is questionable for tonight's game but did practice on Sunday.

If you want to roster the studs, you need to take some chances on the scrubs. While Nunn is far from a scrub in terms of the entire league, he's not part of the three-head Lakers monster with LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and Russell Westbrook. However, someone needs to play the fourth banana, and the former Miami man displayed his potential when he got his chances in Florida.

Last year, when the third-year guard played at least 30 minutes for the Heat, he averaged 18.7 points on 51.5 percent shooting with 3.9 rebounds, 3.1 assists, and 2.8 made threes per game. He was sharing time with Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, and the rest of the Heat players. He can get his points, and at $4,300, he doesn't need to light up the box score to return significant value. Nunn's playing time is an early-season trend to monitor, as Talen Horton-Tucker (thumb), Trevor Ariza (ankle), and possibly Wayne Ellington (hamstring) will be sidelined on Tuesday and beyond.

Others to consider: Patty Mills - PG/SG ($3,700)

 

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DraftKings Forwards - NBA DFS Lineup Picks

Giannis Antetokounmpo - PF/C, MIL vs. BKN ($10,000)

After recommending James Harden as a guard, I'm really raising my risk profile and telling y'all to roll with Giannis Antetokounmpo in the same lineup. Last postseason, the series against the Nets is where the Greek Freak elevated from Top-5 guy to "OMG, is he the best player on the planet?" in the eyes of the average NBA fan. He dominated Brooklyn and put all doubts to bed about whether he could carry a team to a Championship.

Last year, only Julius Randle finished ahead of Antetokounmpo at the Power Forward position in total DraftKings fantasy points. Randle scored 67 more fantasy points than the Freak but played 10 more games. Considering Giannis averaged 56.4 fantasy points per game, I feel relatively confident in saying he is easily the best PF/C option on the slate and probably in the entire game right now. There is enough value on this slate to roster Harden, Antetokounmpo, and a soon-to-be-named Laker in your lineups tonight. It'll be chalky, but this lineup construction will put you in a great spot to win big if you can hit the values.

Grayson Allen - SG/SF, MIL vs. BKN ($3,800)

I'm leading the convoy for the Grayson Allen early-season-value bandwagon, and I saved you a seat! Allen is penciled in as the fill-in starter for the Bucks as Donte DiVincenzo (foot) continues his recovery. Not only that, but the organization gave him a vote of confidence with a two-year, $20 million extension on Monday.

He's going to get the minutes he needs to provide fantasy points, and playing alongside the likes of Giannis and Khris Middleton should leave Allen wide open at the three-point line. In his two years with the Grizzlies, the former Duke standout made 39.5 percent of his three-point attempts, and that will line up nicely with the Bucks' offensive philosophy. Last year, Milwaukee attempted 36.6 threes per game, the ninth-most in the league. Antetokounmpo and Middleton can't score all of their 118 projected points, and I like a wide-open Allen to make a great first impression with his new team.

Others to consider: LeBron James - SF/PF ($9,000)

 

DraftKings Centers - NBA DFS Lineup Picks

Anthony Davis - PF/C, LAL vs. GSW ($8,800)

The third and final chalk play of the evening goes to Anthony Davis. I'm teaming the Brow with the Beard and the Freak as a monstrous trio to open my NBA DFS season, and I feel great about it. I've rosterEd Davis in season-long leagues, and it's incredibly frustrating because of his ongoing injury issues. However, the great part about the first game of the season is he hasn't played any other games with the possibility of getting hurt. Even in a "down" season, AD averaged 21.8 points, 7.9 boards, and 2.9 stocks (steals+blocks) over 36 contests, and I expect him to bounce back in a big way to tip-off the new year.

Paul Millsap - PF/C, BKN at MIL ($3,800)

This is my shot in the dark pick for the two-game slate. The rotation in Brooklyn could change on a nightly basis, but I don't think anyone knows who will be playing most of the minutes for the Nets frontcourt outside of Kevin Durant. For tonight, Paul Millsap is my favorite play after recording a double-double in his first preseason game and then getting the starting nod in his final tuneup. I would check back in closer to tip-off to see what Head Coach Steve Nash says about his starting unit, but if Millsap is the guy, the veteran forward will be in a fantastic spot to return tremendous value on his $3,800 price point.

Others to consider: Brook Lopez - C ($5,900)



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