After a couple of huge 6 game slates, we are back to a 3 gamer on Thursday. It should be another fun slate, as Draftkings has again made the pricing very challenging. The 3 games are:
BiG (63% implied win probability) vs NiP
Fnatic (78%) vs Heretics
100 Thieves (67%) vs Chaos
Draftkings has reaaally tightened up pricing since the player break. At first they were leaving 1 favorite underpriced and creating massive chalk, but they have done that at all on Thursday. Instead, we have all 3 favorites priced up, and even plenty of players on underdogs at or above the $7k mark. The big question becomes, is it better to play the top fraggers on underdogs in a potential loss, or the bottom fraggers on favorites in a win. Obviously if you think the underdog will win you’re going to stack them, but you say you already have someone from 100T and you have $6.6k left for your last spot, is it Liazz at $6.6k or Xeppaa at $6.4k the better last player for that lineup?
I’ll go through the teams and players in a minute, but the way I like to think about this is by looking at fantasy points per round, I use the last 3 months, as well as percent of maps won over those last 3 months. It’s admittedly more art than science, but basically the logic is that you are going to score better when you are winning. I’m looking for favorites who may be taking a step down in competition and have deflated fp/r or underdogs taking a step up who have inflated fp/r.
So, let’s do this for this slate.
BiG’s bottom two scorers are Tizian and K1to. Both have averaged .51 fantasy points over the last 3 months while BiG has won 74% of their maps. Thursday they are only 63% favorites, indicating that NiP is a bit better than their recent competition. Now, looking at the NiP side of things, Plopski, nawwk, and Rez are at .61, .59, and .58 over the last 3 months respectively. Their map win % over that span is 44%. The 37% implied odds they have is a bit under that. I don’t see anything glaring from either side, so I would tend towards sticking with K1to or Tizian over one of the NiP players (salary permitting) in a lineup where I already have a player or two from BiG. Especially since NiP has 3 players who score so similarly, as picking the best one becomes that much harder.
For Fnatic, it’s a bit of a weird situation as Flusha has actually been their 2nd from the bottom fragger yet is still priced at 8k. All 3 of JW, Flusha, and Golden have struggled of late, coming in at .53, .46, and .36 fp/r over the last 3 months respectively. Fnatic have only won 45% of their maps over that time, yet are 78% favorites on Thursday. This indicates that Heretic are (or at least viewed as by Vegas) a big step down in competition. On the Heretics side, Nivera has led them at .72 fp/r, followed by Maka at .62 fp/r and Lucky at .57 fp/r. They have won 56% of their maps in the last 3 months, but are only given a 22% chance based on the odds Thursday. I think a lot of people will go with for something like Nivera + Brollan over JW + Brollan here, but I actually like JW in that scenario.
Lastly, for 100T you have Liazz at .55 fp/r over his last 3 months, and AZR at .46 fp/r as the low scorers. 100T has won 54% of their maps over the time frame, while Thursday they are 67% favorites, meaning Chaos represents a step down in competition. For Chaos, Xeppa averages .74 fp/r and leaf average .67 fp/r over the last 3 months, however they a 67% map winrate over that time while on Thursday they have only a 33% implied win probability. I expect Xeppa to be a popular 1 off, but I actually prefer Liazz in lineups that feature other 100T players. Basically, after digging into it, I don’t like playing any underdogs against players from the favorite on this slate.
That said, that doesn’t mean I don’t like any underdogs in general. My favorite underdog on the slate is actually NiP. BiG have looked very shaky since the restart, and NiP had to play an OG squad that was all warmed up from Dreamhack in their 1st series back, and they took it the distance and then some, as it took OG 104 rounds to win the series. With BiG’s pricing dropping a bit I think they’ll be pretty chalky, which makes me like NiP even more. I’ll have some of all 5 NiP players, as the top 4 all have serious upside and Hampus offers serious salary savings on a slate where you definitely need them. I’ll have some BiG too, but I expect to be under the field on them.
I think people are starting to write off this Fnatic team, and am really interested to see how ownership falls on Thursday. Vegas has them installed as the biggest favorites but I actually think they’ll be the least popular favorite on the slate. Brollan is priced prohibitively up at $10k, $600 clear of anyone else on the slate, and they have been struggling for long enough that it’s really affecting their projections. Plus, people love playing Heretics for whatever reason. Nivera has great numbers and Maka is a dfs darling, always coming in owned higher than I expect (and higher than I think he should be owned). I’ll certainly have some Heretics, but I plan on being overweight on Fnatic, as I don’t think this team is nearly as bad as their recent record shows. I think Flusha is going to have virtually no ownership because his recent stats and therefore projections are so bad, but I expect him to turn it around at some point, as has been a good player in the past, I’ll definitely be forcing some of him into my lineups.
Lastly, I expect Chaos and Xeppaa in particular to pick up some ownership after they upset Furia the other day (although ironically Xeppaa actually struggled in that series). I’ll have a little bit of exposure to Chaos, but I’ll be mostly on the 100T side here, as I think that win over Furia was more a fluke than anything. Liazz is one of my favorite value plays of the day, as he sits at $6.6k priced right in the middle of all the top fraggers from underdogs. He scores well for a 4th fragger at .55 fp/r and has shown upside to be in the top 2 for 100T on any given day.
I think Brollan is going to come in underowned at the captain spot on Thursday. His salary is hard to fit and I already explained how I think Fnatic as a whole will go underowned. I’m not sure how much Brollan I’ll be able to fit myself, but I definitely plan on being over the field on him at CPT. When I run Heretics lineups, I’ll use Nivera as my captain of choice if captaining a Heretics player, he’s cheaper than Maka and scores better over the past 3 months.
I’ll also have some Plopski, Nawwk, and Rez captain lineups, with most of them being Plopski. If they manage to upset BiG, all 3 have a shot at the highest score on the slate, and come at a discount. On the other side of this matchup I’ll be underweight on BiG in my captain spot. It’s so hard to predict who is going to be the top scorer of the day on BiG, and they often eat into each other’s ceiling as well.
Jks once again projects as the top scorer on the slate, and I’ll go back to him here a bit at my captain spot. I may also run some Gratisfaction and Liazz captain lineups, as they open a bit more salary, which is again very needed on this slate. In my Chaos lineups I’ll have a bit of Xeppa and Leaf at the captain slot, as they both have the upside to be the top scorer on the day.
This is a tough slate Thursday, but I think that increases our edge more than on normal days, good luck out there!