NBA DFS Picks 1/7/21: Monkey Knife Fight
Philadelphia 76ers at Brooklyn Nets
MKF Contest: Rapid Fire (Pick 2/2 correctly to get 3x your buy-in)
Points: Kyrie Irving vs. Joel Embiid (Bonus +2.5 points)Pick: Irving Irving faces a Sixers defense that just went a proverbial 15 rounds with the Wizards on Wednesday night in a game they escaped from with a 141-136 victory. Philly came into that contest with excellent all-around defensive metrics, but Bradley Beal’s 60-point effort certainly exposed some flaws. Irving, with Kevin Durant (COVID-19 protocols) still out, now gets a crack at what should be a tired unit after having racked up 29 points in just 30 minutes against the Jazz during his first game without Durant. Embiid does get the 2.5-point head start, but after having logged 37 minutes Wednesday, I expect at least some sluggishness from the big man, who’ll be playing his third game in four nights overall. As such, I give Irving enough of an edge here to overcome the 2.5-point handicap. 🏀 Before you play one of these games and use our Jan. 7 NBA DFS plays, register for a Monkey Knife Fight account using the promo code “TGD" to receive a 100% bonus instantly on your first-time deposit up to $50! Sign up today and join the MKFing team. 🏀
Assists: Ben Simmons vs. Caris LeVert (Bonus +1.5 assists)Pick: Simmons Simmons is coming off a 12-assist effort against the Wizards on Wednesday, pushing his season average to 7.6. The fourth-year guard has dished out at least six dimes in seven of his first eight games overall, and he’ll face a Nets squad surrendering the sixth-most assists per game (10.1) to point guards. LeVert has actually been a solid facilitator, averaging 5.5 assists per contest across 25.5 minutes per game. The fifth-year wing has at least five assists in five of his eight games, but he continues to come off the bench despite Durant’s absence. LeVert played just 21 minutes in the first game with KD, and he’s topped 30 minutes only once this season. Based on sheer expected minutes on the court, I give Simmons the slight edge despite LeVert getting the 1.5-assist head start.
Dallas Mavericks vs. Denver Nuggets
MKF Contest: More or Less (Pick 2/2 correctly to get 3x your buy-in)Luka Doncic: More than 30.5 points Doncic is now up to 25.8 points per game after posting a career-high 33 against the Rockets on Monday night. After a couple days rest, the start point guard faces a Nuggets team that’s been a scoring sieve to ones thus far this season. The Nuggets are allowing the fourth-most points per game (29.9) to the position, along with a 48.3 percent success rate from the floor, including 44.3 percent from three-point range. Doncic has also been over 31 points twice in his first six points, and he eclipsed 30 points in 27 of 61 games last season as well. Nikola Jokic: Less than 21.5 points Jokic is admittedly a difficult player to get a read on in terms of scoring output thus far in the new season. He’s taken double-digit shot attempts in every game, but he’s been all over the board in terms of points, scoring between 17 and 35. Prior to his 35-point outburst against the T-Wolves in his last contest, Jokic had been under 20 points in three of the prior four games. Additionally, he faces a Dallas team Thursday that’s been very good against centers and did a solid job limiting his production last season as well — the Mavs are surrendering the seventh-lowest offensive efficiency rating to centers (28.0), and they limited Jokic to 19.0 points per contest in three games last season.
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