Not only do we get a Fourth of July weekend amid a pandemic, but this weekend we also are treated to some basketball, outside of simulation games, for the first time in what feels like an eternity. And thanks to FanDuel, we get to enjoy some Daily Fantasy with our basketball as well.
In an introductory Saturday to this single-elimination 24-team tournament, The Basketball Tournament (TBT) is a shot at an outright one million dollars for the participating teams involved (along with a $50,000 shared prize for registered fans). The teams consist of a vast array of collegiate alumni members as well as former NBA semi-stars competing over the next two weeks for the big prize.
The rules are a modified edition of the NCAA Men’s standard, as players are granted a five-foul limit before being disqualified on the sixth (instead of the fifth). There are nine-minute quarters in TBT (instead of two ten-minute halves) and there is no overtime as well, given the “Elam Ending” format as seen in this tournament since 2018 and also featured in the 2019 NBA All-Star Game.
Much like I like to with other daily fantasy sports, I’ll delve into some top plays per pricing tier, in a separation of High, Mid-range, and Bargain ranges. There will almost always be a stalwart-studded standout group in every DFS sport, but it’s the unheralded cream that rises to the top which tends to break a slate (for one reason or another).
Nate Mason, Team CP3
The ex-Minnesota Golden Gophers guard was not only All-Big Ten 2016-17, but Nate Mason averaged 17.7 Points and 4 Assists per game in last year’s TBT Tournament, in which he also led both categories for Team CP3. His price tag certainly reflects that, but shooting 45.5% from three-point land last season also helps solidify reason to that fantasy salary.
Markel Brown, Stillwater Stars
Current NBA G League guard for the Oklahoma City Blue, Markel Brown played a brief stint in the NBA after being traded to the New Jersey Nets by the Minnesota Timberwolves in the 2014 NBA Draft. It was in his four years at Oklahoma State that he excelled, averaging 17.2 points per game in his senior year.
Mike Daum, House of ‘Paign
Since his days at South Dakota State University, Mike Daum has taken stride in the Liga ACB for Monbus Obradoiro, but his recent late collegiate days were all the rage.
Being gifted the nickname “The Dauminator”, Daum averaged 25.3 PPG and 11.7 Rebounds per game in his senior year; a double-double each of his final two seasons in NCAA. He also notched a Summit Conference record in scoring three of his four years and top scorer in the conference for career-long.
Michael Finke, House of ‘Paign
The collegiate journeyman played his first three years with Illinois before his shiny stint in the WAC conference with Grand Canyon University, forward Michael Finke set records for 2-pt field goal percentage in his one season in the WAC Conference; first overall for 2018-19 with 70.6%.
As mid-range value amid a sea of lesser talent in that range, Finke could be a steal here.
Chris Moore, Primetime Players
Another TBT veteran in the mix, Chris Moore averaged 16 PPG and 4 RPG in 2019 for the Primetime Players. His collegiate career spent with Charleston Southern University was one season’s worth netting 13.0 PPG and 3.3 RPG before playing a season in Germany with FC Bayern.
Brian Harper, D2
While he didn’t necessarily make waves in his brief stint in the NBA G League, veteran forward Brian Harper transitioned into the Euro and Japanese leagues seamlessly with his skillset, averaging 17.5 PPG with the Toyama Grouses of Japan.
Harper played most recently in the German leagues, serving three games with Tigers Tubingen. His veteran leadership and experience in multiple league formats could spell over into a solid value play come TBT Saturday.
Robert Turner III, Primetime Players
In a Bargain tier of pricing, Robert Turner III turns up as a potentially solid value play considering his cost and who’s available. The two-year Texas Tech Red Raider was fifth in steals overall in the Big 12 Conference in 2013-14, averaging 1.3 steals per game and 42 total (7th Big 12 2013-14). With a fantasy stat as rewarding as it is overlooked, Robert Turner could easily pay off that price tag should Turner get his hands on the ball defensively.
Jehyve Floyd, Big X
As bargain as it gets while holding a candle to the category of promise, ex-Holy Cross star Jehyve Floyd racked up top ten scoring honors for the Patriot Conference as his total field goals through 2017-19 achieved 7th overall conference-wide. Floyd also accumulated most blocks in the conference both years, which reflects the sheer multi-faceted upside we get in Jehyve Floyd at next-to-nothing in FanDuel fantasy dollars.