We have a two-game NBA DFS main slate featuring four teams fighting for the in-season tournament semi-finals playoff spots for Tuesday, December 4th, on DraftKings and FanDuel. This slate doesn't have just a ton of news to wait for, as we know the Lakers duo of LeBron James and Anthony Davis will be suiting up and ready to go for their hosting of the Phoenix Suns in LA, as well as the Milwaukee Bucks playing host to an Eastern Conference foe in the Jalen Brunson and Julius Randle-led New York Knicks. These two games should be super exciting to watch, and both have nice spreads and game totals! Let's talk about these two games.

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New York Knicks vs Milwaukee Bucks

Total: 226.5

Spread: MIL -4.5

NBA Injury Report

New York Knicks Notable Injuries

  • None

Milwaukee Bucks Notable Injuries

Knicks NBA DFS Breakdown

Pace: 29th

Defensive Rating: 3rd

The New York Knicks will find themselves in the midst of a nice pace-UP spot here heading into Milwaukee to take on the Bucks, who we can see currently ranks 5th in the league in PACE at 102.09. Not only should this speed the game up immensely, but the Bucks are known to try to get into transition as much as possible to keep a defense on their toes and reeling backwards. This will be the major factor tonight in this game - can the Knicks slow down Giannis and Damian Lillard and keep the game at half court? As you can see above, the Knicks do currently rank 3rd in defensive rating in the Association, and their interior defense is solid, including their perimeter defense, so even though we may like Lillard here, this is not the greatest spot. 

The main key factor here for the Bucks is getting Antetokounmpo going early and often and in that same fact - they need to get the interior players in Julius Randle and Mitchell Robinson in some foul trouble. The Knicks are currently tied for 2nd in FEWEST shots defended on shots less than six feet from the hoop at a frequency of just 32.2% (only Brooklyn Nets are better at 32.1%). This will play against the Bucks in a big way, as the Bucks currently rank a putrid 25th in drives per game at an average of just 42.6. I think the major factor laid above is crucial to the Buck's success in if they can get to the line, and if Giannis can create while getting to the rim. Secondly, rebounding is going to be huge here and one that both teams have done successfully so far this season. The Bucks currently rank 5th (34.7) in average defensive rebounds per game, while the Knicks rank 12th (33.1). However, as far as offensive rebounding, here is where the Knicks do have a nice edge. The Knicks currently rank 2nd (13.5) in average offensive rebounding per game, where the Bucks rank just 26th (9.2). If the Knicks can crash the glass, they likely have a great shot at winning this game.

In the battle of Randle vs Brunson, we all know how porous the backcourt defense is for the Bucks. Brunson is a smidge cheaper tonight, and I believe has a bit more upside on this slate in the pace-up spot. The last meeting between these two (which was in Milwaukee also), it was Brunson who nearly eclipsed 60 fantasy points recording 45 points, five rebounds, four assists, and a steal across 42 minutes. Randle did have a good game, don't get me wrong, as he accrued 44 fantasy points of his own, however the 5-for-20 shooting is highly indicative on how tough it is to score inside on the Bucks. Give me Brunson as my top Knick Play over Randle tonight. 

Top Play(s): Jalen Brunson, Julius Randle

Secondary Play(s): RJ Barrett, Josh Hart, Immanuel Quickley, Donte DiVincenzo

Bucks NBA DFS Breakdown

Pace: 5th

Defensive Rating: 21st

The Bucks do have homecourt advantage here, but this will not be an easy game at all for many of the same reasons we spoke about above. The Bucks will mainly have to rely on executing in transition, hitting perimeter shots, and trying to win the rebounding battle that they will face. Let's talk a little more here about what makes a good argument for the Bucks to win this quarter-final game tonight at home.

Obviously, the Bucks will be heavily reliant on two main focal points - Giannis Antetokounmpo and Damian Lillard. As long as Giannis can keep the Bucks in this game, we all know how good 4th quarter Lillard has been so far in the clutch this season. Both of these guys put up 40+ fantasy points in their lone meeting in Milwaukee a few weeks ago, but it was Lillard who fueled the 5-point win pouring in 30 points while shooting 7-of-15 from the field and 4-of-7 from long-range. Lillard is the x-factor here in this game, and obviously I think the Bucks will need some extra help from guys like Khris Middleton and Bobby Portis, who will need to be impactful off the bench for the 2nd unit of the Bucks tonight.

Overall, I think this is going to once again be a Lillard game. Giannis only attempted 10 field goals, but did get to the charity stripe a whopping 13 times, however, only made seven of those attempts. Both of these numbers will have to improve for Giannis to have a big ceiling tonight. I believe Lillard will not only have to shoot well from outside, but he will also need to create and facilitate more as four assists last time out was needed, but that number could obviously be much better as well. We should see huge minutes from all these two, but I think Lillard over Giannis for me tonight as far a price goes.

Top Play(s): Damian Lillard, Giannis Antetokounmpo

Secondary Play(s): Brook Lopez, Khris Middleton, Malik Beasley, Bobby Portis 

Phoenix Suns vs Los Angeles Lakers

Total: 227.5

Spread: LAL -1.5

NBA Injury Report

Phoenix Suns Notable Injuries

Los Angeles Lakers Notable Injuries

Suns NBA DFS Breakdown

Pace: 27th

Defensive Rating: 18th

These two teams met back in November in Phoenix and the Lakers ended up prevailing with a road with a final score of 122-119 barn-burner. Now, it is worth mentioning that Devin Booker did NOT play in this game, so seeing as how it was a very close match up without him, that makes this game that much more interesting here tonight. The Lakers do come in as a slight one-bucket favorite to win here, but I think this is the best game of the night for fantasy purposes.

With Booker back in the fold, this absolutely makes this game a banger as we have two star studs on both sides of the court tonight in this match up. Both teams are very evenly matched here, and this is easily identified as even Vegas doesn't know who is going to win this game posting a line here under two points. Lakers do get the homecourt here, and they have been good on their home floor this year, however the Suns are a smooth 7-3 while playing on the road currently.

The main factors here are containing Anthony Davis, limiting LeBron's play-making ability, and play solid defense while getting into some transition with Booker leading the facilitating and dishing double-digit dimes. The Lakers play at a top-ten PACE, so this should help speed the Suns up quite a bit tonight. We all know Durant lives for big games as much as Booker does, and would better to face than the Lakers in Staples.

Top Play(s): Kevin Durant, Devin Booker

Secondary Play(s): Jusuf Nurkic, Grayson Allen, Eric Gordon (QUEST), Josh Okogie

Lakers NBA DFS Breakdown

Pace: 10th

Defensive Rating: 9th

The Lakers are somewhat at full-strength tonight as they are getting back Jarred Vanderbilt, which is huge for their defense. They are also welcoming back Rui Hachimura, who did not see the floor on Saturday, but we know he had firmly been part of the rotation before Jarred Vanderbilt returned, and that may be the case now with Vandy taking over those minutes. Either way, we know Darvin Ham likes to run a tight(er) rotation. Essentially only two players from the bench played more than 14 minutes on Saturday, and I think we likely see a similar look tonight.

LeBron James continues to play despite being listed as questionable just about every game with a calf contusion. I expect there to be no difference here tonight. Davis has been a major bright spot lately with Lebron essentially playing more of a facilitator role, but I expect to see a much more aggressive James tonight in the quarter-finals match. In the lone meeting in Phoenix mentioned above, James played a hefty 36 minutes in the win and recorded 60 fantasy points on 32 points, 11 rebounds, six dimes, and a steal. Davis also saw 36 minutes on the night, but was held to just 5-of-14 shooting in route to 18 points, 11 boards, 4 dimes, and just one swatted shot, which resulted in a smidge over 40 fantasy points. 

This game has LeBron James legacy game written all over it on his home floor against a top team in the West, and I expect to see a top performance and that is why LBJ is the cover of today's playbook. I expect both James and Davis to play 36+ minutes here, and I expect both to play very well. Again, this game should come down to the wire and could possibly turn into a back-and-forth shootout with both teams looking to push the PACE, regardless of the Suns current PACE ranking. Don't really even mind playing both AD and LBJ in the same lineup to be flat-out honest.

Top Play(s): LeBron James, Anthony Davis

Secondary Play(s): D'Angelo Russell, Austin Reaves, Cam Reddish, Max Christie