This article is a breakdown of the three-stat contest on PlayLine tonight that includes the million dollar perfect line bonus. If you’re new to PlayLine, that means if you perfectly predict the stats of Anthony Davis, Draymond Green, and Joel Embiid, PlayLine will give you a million dollars. You can click here to go to the contest. Now let’s dive into the projections you should make to potentially win that jackpot.
We’ll start with Anthony Davis who has become the focal point of the Pelicans’ offense now that Demarcus Cousins is out for the season with a torn achilles. In the two games that Cousins has missed, Davis has taken 16 and 17 shot attempts as well as attempting 10 and 12 free throws. While Davis has been hitting above 75% of his free throws, he has been shooting under 50% from the field which has caused him to only score 23 and 25 points in these two games. Tonight, Davis faces off against an Oklahoma City Thunder team that just had their hearts broken by a buzzer-beater three from Gary Harris last night. It is likely that Anthony Davis will draw the defense of Steven Adams in this one, and Davis has absolutely dominated this matchup in the past. In 11 games against him, he averages an astounding 30.3 PPG, 9.6 RPG, and 2.4 APG. Out of 31 eligible centers on this slate, Adams ranks 3rd worst at defending the paint which should increase the upside of Anthony Davis as well. Due to his terrific matchup and likelihood of positive regression coming, research suggests Davis should score between 26-31 points in this matchup. As it pertains to rebounds, Davis has collected 13 and 17 in the two games without Cousins and while the Thunder rank third best in rebounding rate, we still like Davis to get 13-16 rebounds in this one as it will be fast paced with a lot of rebounding opportunities. Lastly, Anthony Davis has seen a recent surge in the assist column as he is averaging 5 per game over his last five games. Since his usage has increased without Cousins and the ball is in his hands more often, we believe pegging Davis for 4 or 5 assists today is the best way to attack it.
Next, we’ll move on to Draymond Green of the Golden State Warriors. Green is averaging a healthy 11.3 PPG, 7.9 RPG, and 7.3 APG this season. Tonight, he gets a matchup with the Sacramento Kings in a game with a massive 13.5 spread. The Warriors were just blown out against the Utah Jazz, so we expect a fiery Warriors team to come in with a purpose tonight and put a hurting on this grueling Kings team. With that said, we don’t want to overproject the stats of Draymond Green as he may not see his usual 32.5 minutes per games. Over the last two seasons, Draymond has played against the Kings five times and averages 12.8 PPG, 5 RPG, and 7 APG in 32.6 minutes per game. As you may have noticed, these averages are right among his season averages as the Warriors have not needed Draymond to play extra minutes in these games since three of them were double-digit victories. We believe we can safely project Draymond for 10-15 points, 5-7 rebounds, and 6-8 assists as we want to make sure we stay right around his season averages. It should also be noted that Sacramento may get Willie Cauley-Stein back in their lineup tonight and he will likely draw the assignment of Draymond Green. Cauley-Stein has Sacramento’s best DRPM which is another reason we don’t want to overproject Draymond tonight. Draymond is a player that is pretty easy to get some points from as he’s not a big scorer, so even if he only scores a few points you’ll get some of the bonus if you project his stats in the range we are recommending.
Last, but certainly not least (I would never speak bad about you Joel) we have Joel Embiid. Embiid has been an absolute monster in the games he has played for the Sixers this year as he has averaged 23.8 PPG, 11 RPG, and 3.3 APG as well as being selected as an All-Star starter. Embiid draws a tough matchup with the Miami Heat tonight in what projects to be an ugly game. The Heat rank 26th in offensive efficiency, 5th in defensive efficiency, and 27th in overall pace. In the only game that Embiid has faced off against Hassan Whiteside, he put up a line of 22/5/0 in 23 minutes of play. However, with Embiid’s minutes restriction being lifted, he has averaged over 30 minutes of play in his last nine games which increases his opportunity for production. While it pains us not to project Embiid for a stellar game, we will use the Spurs as a point of reference as they play at about the same pace as the Heat. Against the Spurs this season, Embiid has averaged 19.5 PPG, 12.5 RPG, and 3.5 APG in 32.5 minutes of play. A slow paced game is never attractive for projecting statistics, as we believe Embiid gets just under his season average of points as we are projecting him for 19-23. When it comes to rebounds, the Heat are allowing the fifth fewest to opposing centers with a healthy Whiteside in the lineup, so we also want to be cautious with this projection. Anywhere from 9-11 should put you in a good spot. Miami ranks 2nd best in assists per game to the center, so we are projecting Embiid for exactly 2 tonight so we can still get those bonuses no matter what he does on the low end. It seems highly unlikely that he wouldn’t record at least one.
Good luck tonight and enjoy the games! Hopefully one of you wins the million dollar prize!