GPP (guaranteed prize pools) contests are large field tournaments that offer higher payouts by decreasing the number of winners that cash. While cash games (H2H and 50/50s) pay out the top 50%, GPPs often only pay out the top 20% or less. In this format, it’s best to target riskier, higher upside players in hopes of finding a low percentage owned player that crushes value.
When looking for high upside players, a great place to start is by looking at a player’s ceiling. We can calculate a player’s ceiling by taking their season fantasy point average plus one standard deviation. The player’s ceiling tells us their fantasy point upside. Assuming a normal distribution, we can expect a player to exceed this ceiling 16% of the time.
Looking at a player’s ceiling, however, isn’t useful by itself because DFS beasts like the Brow, KD, and LeBron would top the list. A better way to approach the problem is to take the player’s price into consideration by calculating the ceiling ratio (ceiling divided by price). The higher the ceiling ratio, the more upside fantasy points we’re getting per dollar we’re paying.
We’ve provided you with the top rated players by ceiling ratio.
Disclaimer: these picks aren’t necessarily safe for your H2H and 50/50 games. They are high-risk high-reward picks that are intended to differentiate your lineup.
Hint: Click on the graph to maximize the image.
Bargain Bin (< $5,000)
Mike Dunleavy exploded for 39 FP last game against the TWolves. A large factor of his impressive performance was due to the fact that Pau Gasol was out with an illness and Taj Gibson, much to the dismay of ~80% of the DFS community, went down with an injury early into the game. This left Dunleavy with a good amount of looks and he made good on them. In fact, his 18 (!) FGA only trailed behind Jimmy Minutes’ 19. Pau will return in this game against the Clippers which will diminish Dunleavy’s role once again. However, Dunleavy is still priced barely above minimum salary and can light it up from deep to hit value early on. In the past 2 seasons against the Clippers, the least amount of FP Dunleavy has scored against the Clips is 18 FP.
Nikola Mirotic will most likely be the primary back up big man behind Pau Gasol and Joakim Noah with Taj Gibson doubtful. As evidenced by his 31 FP outburst, Mirotic can rack up the stats with the best of them and he’s nearly minimum priced. He makes for a great punt play with a good upside.
Joffrey Lauvergne‘s stats are from a small sample size. Despite starting last game, he makes for a risky play as does every Nuggets player.
Evan Fournier is out with a sore hip.
Darrell Arthur is questionable with a strained knee.
Mid + (> $5,000)
Mo Williams nearly dropped 45 FP in his last game and he’s loving his role on the Hornets. In his 4 games playing for the Hornets the least amount of shots he’s taken is 15! John Legend will look to score early and often against the Magic and he’s one of my favorite high floor and high upside plays.
Rodney Stuckey lit up the Sixers to the tune of 42 FP in his last meeting and he’ll look to keep the pedal to the metal. He’s scored over 33 FP in 3 of his last 4 games and his bench role hasn’t kept him from producing solid value. Stuckey is one of the Pacers’ go to guys for offense and he’ll get his fair share of looks. The spread of 11.5 is a bit scary, but Stuckey’s consistent 40+ FP upside makes him a solid GPP dart.
George Hill‘s triple double was a pleasant surprise to see the least. In the past couple of games, Hill has made up for lost time this season returning 32+ FP in both games. Hill gets the seemingly favorable match-up against the Sixers in this game, but he didn’t fair too well against them last time and only put up 15 FP in 23 minutes of playing time. However, Hill is in rhythm right now and, if you believe this game will stay closer than the predicted spread of 11.5, he could pay off in a big way.
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