NBA DFS Picks & Building Blocks: Buckle Up For A Wild Ride! (May 14)

Tuesday’s NBA action has a later start time of 8:00 p.m. ET for the two-game slate on DraftKings and FanDuel. There are several options in the player pool worth analyzing to find the top NBA DFS building blocks and NBA DFS picks. Let’s dig into the NBA DFS picks and core plays like Anthony Edwards and Isaiah Hartenstein as the postseason rolls onward.

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NBA DFS Picks & Building Blocks Today: Tuesday, May 14

NBA DFS Picks: Building Blocks

Isaiah Hartenstein: Knicks vs. Pacers

Stokastic’s Fantasy Point Projections
DraftKings: 34.92 | FanDuel: 36.04
Stokastic’s Rostership Projections
DraftKings: 50.2% | FanDuel: 74.6%
DFS Salary
DraftKings $6,000 | FanDuel: $5,900

For those playing on FanDuel, Isaiah Hartenstein is the most popular option on the blue site. There are two key reasons for this, with the obvious being that he is underpriced and the second is his power forward eligibility.

Mitchell Robinson and O.G. Anunoby remain out, which in turn should lead to big minutes for Hartenstein.

Speaking of big minutes, the heavy workload doled out by coach Thomas Joseph Thibodeau Jr. seems to be catching up to his remaining ambulatory players. The Pacers jumped out to an early lead that was 20 points at the end of the first quarter. It appeared that New York was going to be able to chip away at the lead, but that was a mirage — after getting it “down” to 17 points, things only escalated.

None of the Knickerbocker starters played in the fourth quarter, and even Hartenstein and Josh Hart didn’t make it to the halfway point of the third quarter. Donte DiVincenzo (32.3)and Jalen Brunson (30.7) were the only members of the first five to play more than 24 minutes. Ideally this will help New York tonight in Madison Square Garden, but the Pacers didn’t have to play much either, with only Tyrese Haliburton (27.5) topping 24.1 minutes for the Indiana starters.

Jericho Sims played for only the second time this postseason, and he actually had a 3:47 rotation at the end of the first quarter when both Hartenstein and Precious Achiuwa hit the bench. Of course, his other 12 minutes were in garbage time, but it would not be a total shock if he saw 5 to 6 minutes tonight, which is notable for those diehards playing the single-game contests.

The other big change is that Alec Burks played 20 minutes prior to the final stanza, including the entire second quarter. He is just $3,900 on DraftKings and $4,300 on FanDuel, which makes him a viable punt option. If he plays well, he could take a couple minutes from fellow reserve Miles McBride or even DiVincenzo.

Brunson is not on the injury report, but he was still favoring his foot on Sunday and the diminutive guard has seen major minutes for the last two months. Regardless of the tired legs, we should expect something similar with regards to a tight rotation as the Knicks look to make good on their 2.5-point homecourt advantage as assigned by the oddsmakers.

The starting five for the Pacers converted on 28 of 42 (66.7%) attempts, while reserves T.J. McConnell (6-12, 50%) and Obi Toppin (6-11, 54.5%) kept the pressure on as well. Haliburton is once again a core play, with Toppin and McConnell being discounted differentiation options. Pascal Siakam, Myles Turner, Aaron Nesmith and Andrew Nembhard are secondary plays with varying degrees of utility based on positional and salary cap requirements.

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Anthony Edwards: Timberwolves at Nuggets

Stokastic’s Fantasy Point Projections
DraftKings: 49.69 | FanDuel: 48.21
Stokastic’s Rostership Projections
DraftKings: 30.0% | FanDuel: 39.8%
DFS Salary
DraftKings: $9,200 | FanDuel: $10,300

Six Timberwolves reached double digits on Sunday, though nobody aside from Anthony Edwards topped 15 points. The budding superstar scored 44 on 16 of 25 (64%) shooting in what turned out to be a losing cause.

Edwards has now scored 40 or more points in three of the last five playoff games, and he is a priority target once again.

In an odd twist, the Nuggets have a chance to be the first team to win at home if they can take care of business in Denver. After dropping the first two games of the series, the defending champions have rallied back. Tonight they are 4.5-point home favorites, which should make for another spicy matchup. Nikola Jokic has a top-3 fantasy point-per-dollar ratio on both DraftKings and FanDuel. Even with that level of production, it is still tricky to build lineups around Jokic without some uncomfortable clicks. As such, the three-time and reigning NBA MVP is only projecting to be on around one-third of all rosters. This is intriguing and will be a fun decision point tonight.

Jamal Murray has put together two strong games and looks to be beyond his calf issue — well, as much as one can be in the midst of the playoffs while still logging heavy minutes. It does seem like Murray’s shooting woes are behind him, which is key as Denver has struggled to find consistent offense outside of Jokic.

Michael Porter Jr. attempted only four shots on Sunday, while Aaron Gordon was a ridiculous 11 of 12 (91.7%) from the field. Gordon has converted on 71.8% of his field goal attempts this series, mostly by just taking what the defense has been giving him as they worried about the “big three” rather than him. That could change somewhat tonight, so be careful with chasing points.

From the reserves, Peyton Watson was a DNP-CD, which was a surprise but not a complete shock. Denver needed offense from the outside to open up the paint for Jokic, which is something that veterans Justin Holiday and Reggie Jackson can still provide. Second-year man Christian Braun should continue to see around 20 minutes per game, but he is typically the fourth or fifth option when he is on the court. Finally, we have Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, who is dinged up but still answering the bell to provide a gritty presence doing the little things.

For a second consecutive game, Rudy Gobert, Karl-Anthony Towns, Mike Conley, Jaden McDaniels and top reserve Naz Reid are all carrying appropriate salaries. Let personal preference be your guide, though none really stand out over their teammates. Nickeil Alexander-Walker is the wild card, though his production is tied almost entirely to his scoring, which brings erratic results.

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Today’s Top Sports Betting Pick

Even though he cleared tonight’s points + rebounds + assists (PRA) milestone on points alone in Game 4, we can look to Aaron Gordon and the under on his 24.5 PRA prop on Hard Rock at -110. Looking at the -119 “true odds” (how OddsShopper measures the potential expected ROI of a given wager), we can see there is a decent 3.5% expected ROI with the current line.

By using OddsShopper to do the heavy lifting when researching favorable bets, we can quickly spot inefficient lines like this one, and having accounts at multiple sportsbooks allows us to pivot to the best number quickly.

NBA Bet Pro has Gordon projected for 36.7minutes, 13.68 points, 6.63 rebounds and 4.34 assists for 24.65 PRA. While that is just over the threshold for the current number, it does not account for variable outcomes. That is best quantified by the 54% likelihood that Gordon falls short of tonight’s target.

In the first three games of this series, the 28-year-old had 33 minutes and 18 PRA, 33 minutes and 26 PRA, and 33 minutes with 20 PRA. Sunday’s 41 minutes and 40 PRA were an outlier performance, buoyed by his near-perfect performance on offense, missing only one of his 12 shots while draining all three free throws.

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Final Thoughts on NBA DFS Picks & Building Blocks Today

Get all the latest news and updates for NBA DFS picks today on the Stokastic NBA Live Before Lock Show at 7:00 p.m. ET on YouTube, breaking down all of the key elements for today’s slate. Brought to you by Sleeper – new users, use this link to receive a $500 first deposit match! Full details here.

Eric "EMac" MacPherson won the 2007 Fantasy Baseball grand prize (trip for two to the MLB All-Star game) in the Roto format on ESPN. He won again in 2008, this time in the H2H format. As one of the early adopters of daily fantasy sports, EMac has been providing content for baseball and basketball as well as both professional and college football since 2012 for a variety of websites including DraftKings Playbook, FanVice, RotoWorld, Daily Fantasy Bootcamp, and RotoGrinders. He is well into his third decade of fantasy sports and has a wealth of knowledge and experience. Follow him on Twitter @EMacDFS or contact EMac by emailing [email protected].

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