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NBA DFS Picks and Fantasy Basketball Building Blocks for Today, Thursday | 5/19/22

Eric MacPherson



The best NBA DFS picks today for Yahoo, DraftKings & FanDuel daily fantasy basketball cash game lineups | Jayson Tatum NBA Tonight 6/8/22

Thursday, May 19 keeps the Eastern Conference Finals moving along with Game 2 actions starting at 8:30 p.m. ET on DraftKings and FanDuel. Below, we will examine the player pool and break down the best NBA DFS picks today for DraftKings and FanDuel lineups.

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DraftKings & FanDuel NBA DFS Picks Today (5/19)

Jaylen Brown (SG) Celtics 

After a strong performance on Tuesday, Jaylen Brown saw a salary increase on all the DFS sites, save for Yahoo. This makes him one of the more trustworthy options from Boston. Al Horford has been upgraded to questionable, but still needs a negative COVID-19 test to clear the health and safety protocol after missing Game 1. Marcus Smart also missed the opening game of the series with a sore foot, but he is expected to start tonight. That is crucial for the Celtics as Derrick White is away from the team attending a personal matter and unlikely to play tonight.

Brown got a lot of his production towards the end of the game, but it still counts towards his fantasy score. He corralled 10 rebounds, reaching the double-digit threshold for just the second time this postseason, and his 24 points were behind only the 29 from Jayson Tatum. The ability to contribute across the box score gives Brown a nice fantasy baseline with solid upside potential and a clear path to 40 fantasy points.

Jimmy Butler (SG/SF) Heat

Though Jimmy Butler is likely to find life more difficult if Smart is able to return, he has shown he has a different playoff gear for the last decade, so, we can, by no means, completely count him out. The nice thing about Butler is that he is able to score at a high level, while also contributing above average rebounds and taking on additional distribution duties with Kyle Lowry still dealing with his hamstring issue. Coach Ime Udoka is going to have to have a scheme that does not allow Butler get to his spots and that task will fall to the duo of Smart and Robert Williams.

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Boston Celtics

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  1. Payton Pritchard: In Game 1, Payton Pritchard was a surprise fantasy darling after Smart was ruled out. He managed to see 16 field goal attempts including 11 from beyond the arc as Boston was in catchup mode. It is unlikely that Pritchard rolls up 30 or more fantasy points again, particularly after being such a defensive liability against Butler on switches. However, now that White is unlikely to play, Pritchard should still get at least a dozen minutes in the rotation and potentially more depending on how Smart’s foot responds under live action.
  2. Grant Williams: As expected, regression came quickly for Grant Williams. Even getting 34 minutes of run in the absence of Horford, he only had five field goal attempts and one lonely rebound. The priority for him, of course, is defense and dealing with Bam Adebayo when he goes out on the wing. While his production expectation is in the 12- to 20-fantasy-point range, the low salary cap figure keeps him viable. If Horford ends up missing a second consecutive game, Williams should see a baseline projection closer to 20 fantasy points with another half dozen or so in realistically attainable upside.

Whether or not you employ Williams in your DFS lineups, he looks like a strong option in the NBA player props market. He has a 3.5 over/under on his rebound prop and the Awesemo NBA player projections have him for 4.3 rebounds, which gives him a 65% probability of surpassing the over. Though he disappointed with only one rebound in the first game, he has at least four rebounds in eight of the last 11 postseason tilts.

Miami Heat

  1. Gabe Vincent: It looked like Gabe Vincent was lost in the early going, but he helped carry the Miami offense ending up with 17 points in 34 minutes of action. He also had three blocked shots on his way to 31.9 fantasy points. For perspective, he had only one other block in the playoffs and his last block in the regular season was in mid-February.
  2. P.J. Tucker: If Vincent begins to draw too much attention from the field because of his big game, P.J. Tucker is the perfect countermove with similar production outcomes.
  3. Max Strus: This is a bit of a stretch for a true discount dandy, but Max Strus has greater upside than Victor Oladipo, who could easily play himself off the court if he continues his pedestrian marksmanship.
Thanks for reading to the end of this article! If you appreciate this free content and want to see more of it every day, you can help us out by sharing this article on social media! We also have Yahoo! NBA ownership rankings, FanDuel rankings and DraftKings ownership rankings for today's slate. Check out our DFS basketball rankings for fantasy points and values that are derived directly from Alex Baker's own NBA DFS projections today. View our FanDuel ownership projections, our DraftKings ownership and our Yahoo! ownership. Looking for more NBA DFS advice today and the best NBA DFS picks today? Our NBA FanDuel projections are updated regularly, including whenever any relevant news breaks.

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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