NBA DFS Picks & Building Blocks: Chaos Reigns Supreme! (April 14)

Today is the final day of the regular season, plenty of positioning is still up for grabs, though some teams are longshots to improve their lots. DraftKings is running split slates, with featured contests for the 1 p.m. ET and 3:30 p.m. ET, while FanDuel has focused on the latter. 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 Davis and LeBron James with ample understudies getting a turn on the big stage for the Sunday matinee.

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NBA DFS Picks & Building Blocks Today: Sunday, April 14

NBA DFS Picks: Building Blocks

Anthony Davis: Lakers at Pelicans

Stokastic’s Fantasy Point Projections
DraftKings: 50.66 | FanDuel: 51.05
Stokastic’s Rostership Projections
DraftKings: 27.7% | FanDuel: 26.2%
DFS Salary
DraftKings: $10,300 | FanDuel: $11,600

There are sooooo many moving parts today, particularly with teams that have a scant probability of improving their playoff standings. The best targets are key players on teams that control their own destiny, which surprisingly is NONE of the three teams tied atop the Western Conference standings.

Yes, Denver, Minnesota and Oklahoma City could each win, but they still need help to maintain sole possession of the No. 1 seed.

Things are a little cleaner for the Lakers and with the Sacramento Kings on a three-game skid and the Golden State Warriors losing to New Orleans on Friday, Los Angeles has a path to the No. 8 seed and a chance to escape the Play-In Tournament scrum with just one road victory. If Anthony Davis can lead the Lakers to victory this afternoon in the city where his NBA career started, his squad will either stay in New Orleans for the first game of the Play-In Tournament or head to Phoenix if the Suns are able to knock off the Timberwolves in Minnesota.

The schedule makers did Davis and LeBron James a bit of a favor as today will mark just the third game for the Lakers in the last seven days. The Pelicans are three-point home favorites, but that is basically a pick’em in today’s NBA. New Orleans wants this victory, because if the Suns lose, the Pellies will be the sixth seed and avoid the entire Play-In Tournament.

Davis and James, of course, are the dynamic duo for the Lakers, with Austin Reaves, D’Angelo Russell and Rui Hachimura being tertiary plays, who at least will be in a meaningful game.

Brandon Ingram has missed the last dozen games with a deep bone bruise in his left knee, though he has been on the cusp of a return. Larry Nance Jr. (personal) missed the last two games, but indications are that he will play this afternoon, which leaves only Naji Marshall (shoulder) as the remaining question mark having missed three of the last four games. New Orleans has won four consecutive games, so the team is riding high and this should be a tight battle between two highly motivated squads.

Zion Williamson and CJ McCollum could lose some opportunities to Ingram if he makes his return, though that pair is the most likely to lead the team in playing time. If Marshall remains out, then the prospects remain solid for Trey Murphy III and Herb Jones Jr. to shore up the wing minutes.

Jaden Hardy: Mavericks at Thunder

Stokastic’s Fantasy Point Projections
DraftKings: 33.32 | FanDuel: 31.28
Stokastic’s Rostership Projections
DraftKings: 62.1% | FanDuel: 78.7%
DFS Salary
DraftKings: $4,400 | FanDuel: $4,300

Dallas is locked into the No. 5 slot, so the team will be resting all of the key contributors. This is also what the Mavs did on Friday, though expect P.J. Washington, Daniel Gafford, Derrick Jones Jr. and Dante Exum to also sit today.

On Friday those four started, but none topped 16 minutes. Jaden Hardy and Olivier-Maxence Prosper led the team with 29 minutes apiece off the bench.

They are two of the strongest value options that we can identify at this time, without knowing what the other teams are doing. Worst case scenario they are neutral tournament options, best case would be that they see similar minutes and production to Friday.

Oklahoma City is all but assured of winning this game as the oddsmakers have them approaching a 20-point edge. The team will still need to have Denver lose to Memphis, which is possible if the Nuggets decide to sit all of their crucial players. Of course, that would in turn make the understudies stand out as strong plays. OKC would also need Minnesota to hold serve against Phoenix in this situation to earn the top bid in the West.

Memphis will be running out the standard eight-man roster, with the players getting a boost if Nikola Jokic and company rest. This is the main matchup to monitor as it has the most if/then ripple effects both for shaping the playoff picture and also DFS tournaments. Who knew that despite losing an entire rotation, the Grizzlies would be DFS darlings for the last six weeks of the season.

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Today’s Top Sports Betting Pick

Act fast on this line as it is unlikely that we see plus money available for the under 8.5 assists prop for Payton Pritchard today. Currently +110 lines are available at BetRivers and SugarHouse.

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.

Per the true odds of -115 (how OddsShopper measures the potential expected ROI of a given wager), this opportunity has a tremendous 12.1% positive expected ROI as a function of the inefficient line.

NBA Bet Pro currently has Pritchard projected for 23.6 minutes and 5.36 assists. This game means nothing for Boston and even with the top-six Celtics all sitting, they are still nearly double-digit home favorites against the woeful Washington Wizards. In a similar spot against Charlotte on Friday, Pritchard started, but still did not play in the fourth quarter as he is actually important to the team for the postseason. Yes, he will likely only see a dozen or so minutes a game backing up Jrue Holiday and Derrick White, but he is the best guard off the bench. He would need to record nine assists for the under to lose at its current threshold, which is possible after seeing the combo-guard rack up 11 against the Hornets, but that was in 30 minutes and the second most of his career for a single game.

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Final Thoughts on NBA DFS Picks & Building Blocks Today

Get all the latest news and updates tonight on the Stokastic NBA Live Before Lock Show starting at 12 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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