By Eric Romoff
We’ve got one of those perfect six-game slates on deck in the association tonight and it sets up nicely for a big night on Jock MKT. Six games falls right into that sweet spot where you can take a nice, balanced approach to your portfolio and find solid returns without taking on too much risk. Of the nine teams in play, Cleveland, Sacramento and Houston are coming in on the second half of a back-to-back and are teams that were already dealing with injuries in their own rights. The Cavaliers and the Kings actually square off against one another and carry the highest total on the board at 223.5. This is certainly the game we want to prioritize today and could offer considerable Penny Stock value as bench players are projected to see an uptick in minutes. On the other side of the spectrum we have two of the stronger defensive teams facing off as an under-manned Heat host the Chicago Bulls in a 208.5 game total. There are a couple of defensive specialists you can add to your portfolio on the cheap but largely I’ll be focusing my investment on teams where the scoring is projected to be prolific.
Jock MKT Projection – 41.15 (6th)
Max IPO Bid -$11.40
Break-Even Rank – 9.8
Jarrett Allen is the perfect Blue Chip for a medium-sized slate. He simply could not find himself in a better matchup and is not regarded as one of the superstars in the NBA, thus keeping his IPO price depressed. Taking a look at his on-court production, you’ll quickly see that sentiment couldn’t be further from the truth. Since returning from injury in late November, Allen is averaging 20.5 points, 10.6 rebounds, 1.8 blocks and nearly 75% from the field. This has found him turning a profit on Jock MKT in eight of his last 10 games and bringing a whopping 371% ROI in that period. Tonight he gets a Sacramento team that is far and away the most favorable to opposing centers and is slated to be without starting Richaun Holmes for a second straight game. The Kings are allowing opposing centers to haul in nearly 20 rebounds and 2.5 blocks per game and last night surrendered 39 boards and eight blocks to a Charlotte team that was essentially only playing wings. I’m willing to bid aggressively on Allen because I think his floor is incredibly safe but I wouldn’t be shocked at all to see him land south of $10.00 when IPO closes on Jock MKT.
Jock MKT Projection – 32.13 (19th)
Max IPO Bid -$6.85
Break-Even Rank – 23.94
Steven Adams is one of the few remaining “traditional” big men in the NBA. He uses his size and touch around the hoop to absolutely dominate the low post and can flirt with double-digit boards nightly, even when playing limited minutes. The center position generally offers a decent amount of safety, given the way that missed FGs result in negative points on Jock MKT, and that is doubly so when there are a limited number of true centers in the pool. Tonight Adams’ projected IPO is going to flirt with a season-high because usual starting center for the Grizzlies Jaren Jackson Jr. has already been ruled out, clearing the way for Adams to slide into the starting lineup. In games where Adams has seen 27 minutes or more he’s averaging 36.2 fantasy points on Jock MKT and can potentially break the 40-point mark as he’s already done so twice on the season. His opponent in the Rockets are currently allowing the sixth most points to opposing centers and his primary defender in Christian Wood simply doesn’t have the size to compete with Adams for boards. Adams does carry some risk as you’re tonight spending more for him than at any point in the season, but he is the perfect example of a points-per-minute player seeing a boost by entering the starting lineup.
Jock MKT Projection – 18.41 (68th)
Max IPO Bid -$2.80
Break-Even Rank – 35.23
This one should be a real moneymaker. Starting SF/PF Kyle Kuzma has been ruled out for this game against Utah and that opens up considerable opportunity for someone to step up in his absence. The Wizards have completely overhauled their offense under Head Coach Wes Unseld and it now runs primarily through the wings as opposed to the Beal-dominated approach of recent memory. This has provided a platform for Kuzma to stage a bit of a rebound in his young career as his is now within the top-20 of usage in the NBA. Taking a look at the Wizards’ splits, Den Avdija’s time on the court and usage is almost the perfect mirror to that of Kuzma’s. I wouldn’t be surprised if we end up seeing someone like Davis Bertans or even Anthony Gill draw the start tonight over Avdija but make no mistake about it, Avdija is going to soak up the usage left behind by Kuzma. I’d actually prefer he isn’t named a starter as it will keep his IPO price down and he’d still flirt with around 25 minutes against the Jazz.