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 graphs to maximize the image.
Bargain Bin (< $5,000)
Mike Dunleavy exploded for 42 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 21 FP.
Jeremy Lin has been playing well lately and has exceeded 29 FP in 2 of his last 3 games. Ronnie Price is out after having surgery on his elbow and that leaves the PG responsibilities to Clarkson and JLin. Although he doesn’t start, Lin is the main facilitator off the bench and he has an aggressive mentality to score. He’s been seeing minutes in the mid to high 20’s and that should continue to be the trend. Priced below 4k, Lin makes for a decent GPP dart against the Thunder.
DJ Augustin will start at PG for the Thunder after Russell Westbeast had surgery to repair his fractured cheekbone. In a 10 game stint starting for the Pistons, Augustin scored over 30 FP 7 times and over 40 FP 5 times. He’s only priced at 4.1k and he’ll be facing off against the Lakers giving him a great match-up. There’s not much more to say here besides the fact that he’ll be one of the most popular plays of the day tomorrow. Use that information as you please.
Mid + (> $5,000)
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 33+ 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 17 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.
Mo Williams nearly dropped a 50 burger 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 44 FP in his last meeting and he’ll look to keep the pedal to the metal. He’s scored over 34 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.
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