The NBA Finals get underway with Game 1 Wednesday night as the Lakers take on the upset-minded Heat. In a series with LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Jimmy Butler, and Bam Adebayo, putting together a DraftKings Showdown lineup to play in a single-game tournament can be a challenge. There are a lot of high-priced, productive players without a ton of options to choose from when trying to find value, so having a sound strategy will be key.
Our biggest call for Game 1 is fading Jimmy Butler. It’s next to impossible to play all four of Davis, James, Butler and Adebayo, and so the choice to fade Butler was made. He’s probably the least likely of the big names to have a monster game of more than 50 or 60 DK points, and the Lakers have a few strong wing defenders to help slow Butler down.
DraftKings Showdown Picks: Lakers vs. Heat Game 1
Captain (1.5x price, 1.5x points): Alex Caruso, Lakers ($4,500)
Caruso has developed into the wizard of playing with LeBron James. The Lakers are historically great when that duo is on the floor together. We know Caruso will come off the bench, but we wanted to snag a value captain here for the sake of playing three of the four best players. Caruso should be called upon plenty to help defend the Heat’s bevy of wing talent, and he does just enough offensively to pay off value here.
FLEX: LeBron James, Lakers ($13,200)
If you ask me, he’s the greatest of all time after making it to his 10th NBA Finals. You can’t fade LeBron, you just can’t. He could get a triple-double while sleepwalking through the game, and he probably won’t be sleepwalking. If you’re looking for a concern, maybe it’s the defense of Jae Crowder and Andre Iguodala, but that isn’t enough to push me off of playing him.
FLEX: Anthony Davis, Lakers ($12,000)
Davis proves a tougher matchup for Miami than James does. The Heat will likely mostly use Adebayo on Davis, but Davis wins that matchup from a height perspective, which should help him on the glass and as a jump-shooter. Nobody on the Miami bench can defend Davis better than Bam, so it should be relatively smooth sailing for AD.
FLEX: Bam Adebayo, Heat ($10,600)
Adebayo took his game to a whole new level late in the series against the Celtics – he’s already been great this year, but all of a sudden he started joining the triple-double watch that James is normally on. Adebayo is the focal point of Miami’s offense and should pile up stats across the board no matter how L.A. tries to defend him.
FLEX: Duncan Robinson, Heat ($6,800)
Robinson is a streaky three-point specialist, but you need the potential for an eruption from a non-superstar to win an NBA Showdown tournament. At least early in the series, Robinson should be a matchup problem for the Lakers since very few players play like him. The way he flies around the perimeter and around screens should find open looks early in this series.
FLEX: Markieff Morris, Lakers ($2,600)
Morris will play double-digit minutes off L.A.’s bench, and the Lakers could choose to go smaller in this series (away from Javale McGee and Dwight Howard and to Morris). We saw Morris go on a three-point outburst once earlier this postseason. He’s unlikely to do it again, but he’s the best we’re getting at this price point.