NBA Betting, DFS Angles for Tuesday’s Slate

NBA Betting, DFS Angles for Tuesday’s Slate article feature image

What’d I tell you last week? Drama, drama, drama. The WWE inked Ronda Rousey and the NBA couldn’t just take the back seat for a little bit, could they?

While it was originally DeAndre Jordan’s name linked to trade talks, Blake Griffin became the latest Clipper to leave Los Angeles and bring the team one step closer to their late 90s days.

Whatever happens, we all hope that the Clippers can unleash the true star of the trade: Boban Marjanovic…I’m sure the FantasyLabs boys will have plenty to add on that topic later, though. — Mark Gallant

If there’s a specific matchup you want to jump to, click the quick links below. All info is as of Tuesday afternoon. For live spreads and bet percentages, check out this page. Follow the latest injury info on our industry-leading news feed. To get access to our premium betting tools, subscribe here.

OKC-WAS | MIN-TOR | CLE-DET | DEN-SAS | POR-LAC


OKC THUNDER (-3.5) AT WASHINGTON WIZARDS | O/U: 217

7 p.m. ET

Injuries to watch: The Wizards will reportedly be without John Wall for the next six weeks as he undergoes a clean-up procedure on his knee. Bradley Beal has been the chalk du jour when Wall has missed time, averaging 27 percent ownership on DraftKings in Wall’s past 10 DNPs. He’s been a trap more often than not, however, as he’s failed to exceed his DraftKings salary-based expectations 70 percent of the time. Beal has averaged just 33.9 fantasy points per game in this sample, down from the 38.4 he’s averaged on the season. He makes for an easy fade in GPPs given his projected ownership with Markieff Morris ($5,500 on FanDuel) and Kelly Oubre ($4,800 on FD) the preferred leverage plays. — Justin Phan

What the metrics say: Wall has had a down season by his standards, but he’s still vitally important to this Wizards team. When he’s been on the floor, Washington has scored 114.0 points per 100 possessions and allowed 108.7; when he’s been off, they’ve scored just 109.3 and allowed 112.1. The Wizards are very solid this season at full strength: Their best lineup of Wall-Beal-Porter-Oubre-Gortat has blitzed opponents, posting a +18.4 point differential. Their top-two lineups without Wall have been atrocious, however, posting point differentials of -4.3 and -10.9 across 652 combined minutes. The matchup against the Thunder is easier without Andre Roberson, who had a DPOY-like impact on OKC’s defense this season, but this is still a big, uphill battle. — Bryan Mears

What I’m watching for: The Thunder drop their big in pick and rolls, which means Bradley Beal is going to get ample opportunity to get loose in this one. The Roberson injury is a much bigger deal than people realize; his switchability did a lot for what OKC wants to do. Keep an eye out for Carmelo Anthony, too. Markieff Morris is really spotty with his off-ball defense and tends to relax in the mid-range, where Melo lives. — Matt Moore

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

DFS nugget: The Wizards are implied for just 106 points today, but Vegas may be underestimating the defensive impact of Roberson. Their defense has fallen off a cliff with him off the court this season, allowing an average of 113.3 points per 100 possessions. Given that the Wizards will also be without their highest usage player in Wall, they’re a very intriguing team to target on tonight’s slate. — Matt LaMarca

Trend to know: The Wizards are 8-16 ATS (33.3%) at home this season, failing to cover the spread in their past five home games. That ATS win rate would be the worst mark for Washington in the past 20 years. — Evan Abrams


MINNESOTA TIMBERWOLVES AT TORONTO RAPTORS (-6.5) | O/U: 218.5

7:30 p.m. ET

What the metrics say: This is the game of the night, featuring two of the best teams in the league both projected for 50-plus wins by FiveThirtyEight. Toronto remains one of the most underrated teams this season, as they rank fourth in offensive efficiency and third in defensive efficiency. They’re the fourth-best team in half-court offense, and they’re the second-best team in half court defense. That’s a recipe for success against any team, and they face a Wolves squad that has been reeling of late, losing five of their past eight games, including a stinker vs. the lowly Atlanta Hawks their last time out. The Wolves still own poor home/away splits, posting a +6.6 net rating at home versus a -0.3 mark on the road. While the spread might be surprising, the metrics certainly back it up. — Bryan Mears

What I’m watching for: Andrew Wiggins and DeMar DeRozan star in … Looper 2: Mid-Range Assassins. Wiggins gets to see his future, a ball-dominant ISO scorer who eventually adapts his game and starts being more of a playmaker to actually make his team better. This frontcourt is a bad matchup for Toronto, as Valanciunas can’t out-work Taj Gibson or handle the versatility of Karl-Anthony Towns. Meanwhile, Jimmy Butler has made the Raptors miserable throughout his career. Jeff Teague is coming off maybe his worst performance ever, and Wolves fans are ready for his head, so I’m expecting a quietly good game tonight. — Matt Moore

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Injuries to watch: Fred VanVleet (personal) was excused from practice on Monday but isn’t listed on the latest injury report. — Justin Phan

Trend to know: Over the past 10 seasons, teams with a win percentage of 60% or higher are 64-46-2 ATS (58.2%) playing in Toronto. Over that span, only Milwaukee has been a more profitable location for teams in this spot. Recently, however, this trend has dipped the other way toward Toronto. Over the past three seasons, teams with a win percentage of 60% or higher are just 8-14-1 ATS (36.4%) north of the border. — Evan Abrams


CLEVELAND CAVALIERS (-5.5) AT DETROIT PISTONS | O/U: 220.5

8 p.m. ET | TNT

Injuries to watch: Dwyane Wade (personal) has missed the past two games and is listed as TBD on the latest injury report, although he had said he planned to return Tuesday. The Pistons will be without their newly-acquired trio of Blake Griffin, Willie Reed, and Brice Johnson, and it’s possible they won’t make their debuts until Saturday. It’s about as good a spot as possible for their projected starters, as they’ll have little choice but to play heavy minutes in a dream matchup against one of the league’s worst defenses. Anthony Tolliver, Reggie Bullock, and Stanley Johnson are near locks to see north of 30 minutes, and they will be heavy chalk in DFS cash games as their price tags have yet to catch up to their short-term roles. — Justin Phan

DFS nugget: As Justin mentioned above, the Pistons value players will be extremely chalky tonight given their elite matchup and expanded roles following the trade. But one option who could fly a bit under the radar is Luke Kennard, who has seen a usage bump of 8.3 percent with Bradley, Harris, Reggie Jackson, and Boban off the floor this season, resulting in an average of 0.74 fantasy points per minute. He’s priced at the near-minimum ($3,700) on FanDuel and is currently projected for just 2-4 percent ownership. — Matt LaMarca

Betting market: This game opened with the Pistons as a two point dog yesterday, but bookmakers reopened it at +5.5 after dealing Bradley, Harris, and Boban. More than 80% of the total bets and dollars are on the Cavs, but none of it appears to be sharp. Though Cleveland moved to -6 for a brief while this morning, they’ve sat steady at -5.5 for most of the day. — Mark Gallant

Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

What the metrics say: The Pistons will look very different once Griffin debuts, but tonight could be ugly. Their projected starting lineup — Smith-Bullock-Johnson-Tolliver-Drummond — has played just 34 total minutes together this season, and they’ve been atrocious in that time, scoring a solid 114.7 points/100 but allowing an embarrassing 128.6 points/100. They lost their second-best shot creator in Tobias Harris, and, while they’ll gain a superior one in Griffin, they’ll really struggle to score tonight, even against a Cleveland team that ranks dead last in defensive efficiency. This will be perhaps the most interesting storyline of the night: If the Cavs can’t stop this limited Detroit squad from scoring, their chances of winning a title are almost nil. — Bryan Mears

What I’m watching for: No Blake Griffin tonight for Detroit — boy, doesn’t that sound weird to say? — so we’re back to what we’re always watching: the Cavs defense. I second what Bryan wrote above. — Matt Moore

Trend No. 1 to know: Since LeBron returned to Cleveland, the Cavs are 43-60-2 (41.7%) ATS as road favorites. A majority of spread bets were on LeBron & Co. in every game. — John Ewing

Trend No. 2 to know: The Cavaliers have lost 10 straight road games ATS. During that span, they have failed to cover the spread by 13.5 PPG, and their only straight-up win came against the 14-34 Orlando Magic.— Evan Abrams


DENVER NUGGETS AT SAN ANTONIO SPURS (-7.5) | O/U: 202

8:30 p.m. ET

What I’m watching for:  I’m really interested to see how Denver responds here. They just suffered a heartbreaking one-point loss to Boston. They’re on a back-to-back facing the Spurs without Kawhi Leonard and Rudy Gay. They should get their teeth kicked in. But this team was encouraged by how they played Monday night. Mason Plumlee is out, putting the Nuggets even more up against the wall, which is usually the only place they respond. — Matt Moore

Injuries to watch: Plumlee’s absence means that Trey Lyles will likely get the start alongside Nikola Jokic, which puts him squarely in the cash game mix on DraftKings at $5,100. The main issue, however, is that this is a brutal spot for Denver playing their third game in four days and on the second leg of a road back-to-back against the league’s No. 2 defense. The Spurs will also have a one-day rest advantage. It’ll be interesting to see if that’ll be enough to stop Jokic, who’s owned the Spurs since he entered the league. He’s topped his salary-based expectations by an average of 8.9 DraftKings points in eight matchups. — Justin Phan

Betting market: Bettors are piling on the Spurs, who are coming off a 15-point home victory over the Kings. With 75% of bets and a whopping 92% of dollars betting San Antonio, the Spurs have moved from -6 to -7.5 since opening, suggesting that both square and sharp bettors are backing Pop. — Mark Gallant

What the metrics say: Somehow, despite not having Kawhi Leonard for most of the year, the Spurs still rank second in defensive efficiency this season. As Justin mentioned, the Nuggets are on the second leg of a back-to-back tonight and are coming off a heartbreaking loss to the Celtics. Their rotations have been much maligned by NBA Twitter of late, and the metrics haven’t been great. Over their past 10 games, they rank 24th with a -4.3 net rating. Interestingly, the issue hasn’t been the Plumlee-Jokic big man pairing: Those lineups have actually posted a +8.7 net rating during that time. Instead, the disasters have been Will Barton playing point guard and Wilson Chandler playing anywhere. The lineup with Barton-Harris-Chandler-Jokic-Plumlee — one of their most-used pairings over the past 10 games — has posted a -40.2 net rating. Yes, that number is correct. If you see Barton playing point guard tonight, especially if Chandler is playing with him, it might be wise to live bet the Spurs. — Bryan Mears

Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

DFS nugget: Lyles has the potential to play upwards of 30 minutes tonight given the injury to Plumlee, which is really appealing for DFS purposes. He’s averaged a stout 1.11 fantasy points per minute over the past month, which has allowed him to return value in 85 percent of his games over that time frame. The potential for a few additional minutes in today’s contest could result in a big performance. — Matt LaMarca

Trend No. 1 to know: The Spurs are 16-7-2 ATS at home this season, which makes San Antonio the most profitable home team in the NBA (+$843 on $100/game basis). — Evan Abrams

Trend No. 2 to know: Opponents are 51-67-2 ATS (43.2%) when playing on a back-to-back in San Antonio over the past 10 seasons. The only team in this spot over the last decade more profitable than the Spurs are the Warriors (49-77-5 ATS). — Evan Abrams


PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS (-2) AT LA CLIPPERS | O/U: 220

10:30 p.m. ET | TNT

Injuries to watch: Danilo Gallinari has been upgraded to questionable and could make his return to the lineup after missing the past 25 games with a glute injury. Jawun Evans (abdominal) remains out, and it’s unlikely the newly-acquired Clippers — Avery Bradley, Tobias Harris, and Boban Marjanovic — will make their debuts. The absence of Blake Griffin will leave a huge usage and playmaking void that Lou Williams will attempt to fill. The combination of his projected minutes (35.6) and usage (34.1%) gives him an exceptionally high floor, and he’s priced at just $8,200 on DraftKings, where he has a 93% Bargain Rating. DeAndre Jordan has also benefited in Griffin’s absence, averaging 40.3 DraftKings points per game in the 16 contests Griffin has missed this season, as opposed to 32.1 in the 28 games they’ve played together. — Justin Phan

DFS nugget: Jordan has been a rebound machine with Griffin off the court this season, posting a rebound percentage of 28.2 percent. That’s translated into a ridiculous 17.1 rebounds per game in the 16 games with Griffin out of the lineup, which has served as a major boon to his fantasy production. He’s exceed salary-based expectations by an average of 2.8 points per game in games without Griffin this season, and his current $6,800 salary is roughly $700 less than his average salary during those contests. — Matt LaMarca

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

What I’m watching for: With no Harris, Bradley and Marjanovic, this is going to be a weird game. But I like the Blazers in this spot. They’re a team that struggles when faced with adversity, but they handle business when they should. Keep an eye on Montrezl Harrell vs. Ed Davis. That’s a battle of young bigs that will get nasty in a hurry. — Matt Moore

Betting market: With Blake out of town, the Clips have moved from -2.5 to +2.5 since the original line was released. As was the case with the Pistons, bettors are fading the understaffed Clippers team. The Blazers are getting more than 80% of bets at the time of publication. They also had a steam move triggered on them by the sharp offshore book Pinnacle this morning at -2. —Mark Gallant

What the metrics say: We’ll likely see a starting lineup of Teodosic-Wallace-Johnson-Gallinari-Jordan for the Clippers tonight, a unit that has literally never played together before. Without either Griffin or Lou Williams on the floor this year, the Clippers have scored just 100.0 points/100. All of that is bad news against a Blazers team that ranks seventh in defensive efficiency. Even if the Clippers want to get out and run in transition, which could be the best way to generate points given they don’t have chemistry in the half court, this is a brutal matchup for that: Portland ranks second in transition defense this year. The Clippers did well to get off a lot of long term money in their trade, but the on-court picture tonight certainly won’t be pretty. — Bryan Mears

Did you know? Damian Lillard and the Staples Center have an interesting relationship. Here are his career numbers against both the Clippers and the Lakers on the road.

  • Clippers: 1-8 SU | 5-3-1 ATS (15.1 PPG)
  • Lakers: 7-2 SU | 8-1 ATS (24.1 PPG)
  • Total: 8-10 SU | 13-4-1 ATS

Lillard’s one straight-up victory at the Staples Center against the Clippers came with one of the strangest box scores you’ll ever see: 5 points, 1-13 FG, 0-7 3PT, 18 rebounds. — Evan Abrams

Top photo via Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports