EuroLeague Primer: Round 4 - Thursday

EuroLeague Primer: Round 4 - Thursday

This article is part of our EuroLeague Primer series.

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STATS AND INFO.

THE SLATE

FC Barcelona at Zalgiris Kaunas

Status Check: Nikola Mirotic (BAR), Kyle Kuric (BAR), Sergi Martinez (BAR), Dovydas Giedraitis (ZAL)

The Breakdown: The second Round on this week's schedule tips off in Lithuania and features two teams that picked up a win Tuesday. While Barcelona will again be on the road without its best player, they are favored to win by at least 7.5 points on various websites. These teams bookended the standings last season, but they've been pretty close in one regard three Rounds in, as Barcelona is only 11 points better in the points differential column.

Best Bets for Success: The Spanish squad is regularly spreading out the minutes among 10 players, which has allowed many of them to contribute but has led to just one DraftKings point total above 24.0 all the season. Things are most settled in the backcourt, as both Tomas Satoransky and Nicolas Laprovittola put up at least 21.5 points on that website in each of the first three Rounds. We like Satoransky's upside more, but Laprovittola has been nearly as productive, and he's the far cheaper option both on DraftKings and in the EuroLeague Fantasy Challenge. If you waited on Ignas Brazdeikis in Round 2 you missed out, as he easily led his team in DraftKings points for the second straight Round. He is more likely to produce on his team than anyone else and remains a quality option in the Fantasy Challenge, but he has a little less appeal on DraftKings with his price jumping $1,100.

Fantasy Factors: The cost to roster Rolands Smits continues to rise, but even at $7,500 only six players on DraftKings are returning more value, and he is still pretty affordable in the Fantasy Challenge at 8.7 credits. Smits is seeing far more opportunities with Zalgiris than he did in years past with Barcelona, and it seems likely he will try to remind his former team what they are missing in Round 4. Edgaras Ulanovas has seen his output increase and leads his team in minutes, which puts him in the mix in the Fantasy Challenge. It's tough to peg which players to target on the Barcelona side with so many of them seeing the court, but Jan Vesely looks good on DraftKings at his $8,300 price point, and Mike Tobey is worth considering on the same website at $5,000. Sertac Sanli and Alex Abrines can be considered in the Fantasy Challenge, with neither listed above 8.1 credits.

Valencia Basket at Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul

Status Check: Jasiel Rivero (VBC), James Webb III (VBC), Martin Hermannsson (VBC), Nemanja Bjelica (FBB), Tarik Biberovic (FBB)

The Breakdown: This will be another matchup of clubs coming off a win -- and in Fenerbahce's case, three of them. Valencia beat the odds Tuesday and took down Efes on its home court, but it will be tough for them to match the 16 three-pointers they made in that game, particularly with the Turkish team rating better defensively than any other squad and owning a nearly 30-point edge in net rating. Fenerbahce is among the more efficient squads on the offensive end as well, so Valencia will have its work cut out for them -- particularly down a couple key pieces in the frontcourt. The oddsmakers are expecting a relatively easy win for the home team, as Fenerbahce is favored by 8.5 points across the board and has the highest moneyline on one DraftKings.

Best Bets for Success: Nick Calathes continues to solidify his standing in his section, as he led his team in fantasy points for the third time in as many appearances his last time out. He is now above the $10,000 mark on DraftKings, but even still only one player on the slate is returning more average value. Chris Jones appears to have settled in with Valencia, and he remains his team's best bet to deliver. Fenerbache's roster of course looks a lot different than it did last season, but Jones thrived against the Turkish team last season, averaging over 30 DraftKings points in two matchups.

Fantasy Factors: With the potential for this game to get out of hand, it may be best to avoid most of Fenerbahce's pricier players Thursday. However, Scottie Wilbekin deserves strong consideration on DraftKings. He has not produced like he did in years past, but he did top the 20-point mark on that website in the last two Rounds and has seen his price dip to just $7,800. Carsen Edwards shined in a lopsided Tuesday, and this game could turn out the same way, which gives him plenty of appeal on the same website at just $6,900. We don't know if Bjelica will play Thursday, but if he does, he could be worth a gamble on DraftKings at a meager $3,700. Bojan Dubljevic immediately capitalized on the absences around him, putting up 28.3 DraftKings points in Round 3. The Turkish team has been pretty tough on frontcourt players, but not so much against players listed at the center specifically, so Dubljevic is worth a look in both contests. Jared Harper remains a breakout candidate, putting him in the conversation on DraftKings at $7,200.

LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne at Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv

Status Check: Parker Jackson-Cartwright (ASV), Darrun Hilliard (MTA)

The Breakdown: Maccabi is off to a bit of an uneven start, as despite their 2-1 record they have a negative point differential. The oddsmakers are expecting them to carry Tuesday's strong second half into this one, though, as the hosts have the widest spread on a couple websites and also have the highest moneyline on BetMGM. Outside of one contest the over/under numbers for Thursday's games are all relatively similar, but it should be noted that this one is at least slightly the highest on each website referenced.

Best Bets for Success: Maccabi continues to get a lot of mileage out of its new-look backcourt, as both Wade Baldwin and Lorenzo Brown stuffed the stat sheet Tuesday for the third time in as many Rounds. The spread is a bit of a concern for both players, but if this does wind up behind the highest-scoring game it will likely be because of these two. We're going to switch things up on the ASVEL side for Round 3 and go with Youssoupha Fall, who averaged just under 30 DraftKings points over the last two Rounds. Fall is finally getting a chance to play regularly, and it is showing in the box score. At $8,500 on DraftKings and 9.3 credits in the Fantasy Challenge, he looks like one of the better bargains out there in both contests.

Fantasy Factors: Not many players stand out in this section on either side, but we have to mention Roman Sorkin, who despite a $1,600 price jump is returning more average value on DraftKings than any other player on the slate and also checks in at just 5.8 credits in the Fantasy Challenge. We'd like to see him do it a bit more often before really trusting him, but we won't fault you if you have already bought in. A high-scoring game would of course give more players the opportunity to return value, and the best option among the bunch -- all things considered -- could be Jonah Mathews, who played at least 20 minutes and recorded at least 15.5 DraftKings points in each of the first three Rounds.

Virtus Segafredo Bologna at Partizan Mozzart Bet Belgrade

Status Check: Tornike Shengelia (VIR), Awudu Abass (VIR), Gora Camara (VIR), Alen Smailagic (PAR), Aleksa Avramovic (PAR)

The Breakdown: This contest features two of the three teams that rejoined the EuroLeague this season, and both have struggled to adjust, with Virtus Bologna's Round 2 win over winless Bayern being the lone checkmark in the victory column between the two. The home team is expected to pick up its first win Thursday, as they are favored to win by a few points. Both teams rate quite differently, as the Italian team has struggled on the offensive end but has been stout defensively. Partizan has been effective on the offensive end, but they rate the worst -- by a wide margin -- when it comes to stopping their opponents.

Best Bets for Success: We weren't sure Mathias Lessort and Zach LeDay could repeat their Round 2 performances on Tuesday, but they most certainly did, and we can't leave either of them out of this section for Round 3. Lessort -- on the strength of consecutive double-doubles -- is now the priciest player on the DraftKings slate, and his price has jumped a whopping $4,100 on that website since Round 1. LeDay, meanwhile, actually recorded more DraftKings points than his teammate over the last two Rounds The Italian team has fared well against players listed at the center spot, but you have to like the fact both players are averaging well over 30 minutes per night, and Partizan does not have any other established big men to turn too. While he was outshined by his teammates a bit of late, we will still leave Kevin Punter here, as he is tied for 10th in the league in field goal attempts per game and is also comfortably averaging over 30 minutes per contest. Things remain spread out pretty evenly for Virtus, but we will stick with Jordan Mickey, who led his team in DraftKings points in both Rounds 2 and 3. At 9.9 credits, he remains one of the better options in the Fantasy Challenge at the center spot.

Fantasy Factors: With Partizan's top trio of players dominating the minutes and the fantasy points, we'd like to see more from most of the players on the rest of their roster before including them in fantasy lineups. However, you could take a look at Yam Madar, who was selected in the 2020 NBA Draft and has seen his minutes pick up. He is listed at just $5,300 on DraftKings and 6.4 credits in the Fantasy Challenge. Virtus lacks value plays as well, but Milos Teodosic and Semi Ojeleye remain in the mix on DraftKings, with neither checking in above $7,600.

EA7 Emporio Armani Milan at FC Bayern Munich

Status Check: Luigi Datome (EA7), Naz Mitrou-Long (EA7), Tommaso Baldasso (EA7), Isaac Bonga (BAY), Zan Mark Sisko (BAY), Elias Harris (BAY)

The Breakdown: The over/under in each of the four games above resides around 155 points, but that mark in this contest does not even touch 150. No team has struggled as much on the offensive end as Bayern, and Milan has been among the best defensively. The oddsmakers are expecting a close one, as the visitors are favored by between 2.5 and 4.5 points, depending on the website. The German club will surely come to play in front of their home fans, but they will need to overcome a far larger gap in net rating.

Best Bets for Success: We will of course kick things off with Shavon Shields, who has topped the 30-point mark on DraftKings in each of his two appearances. He was held in check a bit by Bayern last season, but he did put 22 points in the scoring column last time he saw them. With Bayern having a rough go of it on the offensive end it's tough to identify a true top option. We're going to lean on last season, then, and go with Vladimir Lucic, who averaged 23.0 points and 30.2 DraftKings points in two matchups with the Italian team.

Fantasy Factors: Though this game could be a grinder, there is still some potential for value -- particularly on DraftKings. Nicolo Melli is down to $8,600 on that website, and he averaged a double-double against Bayern a season ago. Kevin Pangos appears to have settled in for Milan, and he remains a bargain below $8,000. Brandon Davies broke out his last time out, yet he remains just $7,200 in DraftKings contests. Augustine Rubit got off to an extremely slow start, but he looked like the player he was last season in Round 2, and if that player shows up again he could deliver at $7,500. 

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Kevin O'Brien plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: kevob100, DraftKings: kevob100.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kevin O'Brien
Kevin mans the Packers and Brewers beats and moonlights as RotoWire's Director of Operations.
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