NBA DFS Contrarian Picks Today: Knicks Offer Contrarian Edge (March 14)

We’re back with another six-game NBA slate on Thursday that tips off at 7:30 p.m. EST on DraftKings. Using Stokastic’s NBA DFS Boom/Bust tool, let’s dive into the player pool to discuss the best NBA DFS contrarian picks for today’s action, which include Tyrese Maxey and Isaiah Hartenstein. One of the keys to a winning NBA DFS lineup is differentiation, so without contrarian picks like the ones below, you’ll struggle to separate from the pack in tournaments.

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NBA DFS Contrarian Picks Today: Thursday, March 14

NBA DFS High-Priced Contrarian Pick

76ers-Bucks: Tyrese Maxey

Stokastic’s Optimality Projection
DraftKings: 12.00%
DFS Salary
DraftKings: $8,500

Tyrese Maxey is currently the odds-on favorite to win the NBA’s Most Improved Player award, and he’s the top contrarian stud on DraftKings tonight at $8,500. Coming into tonight’s action averaging 43.6 DraftKings points per game, Maxey has been instrumental in keeping the 76ers afloat without the services of Joel Embiid. Making his return on from a concussion after missing the past four games, Maxey struggled against the Knicks on Tuesday and produced his lowest scoring output (17 pts) since February 7. As a result of his injury and lack of production in his return, Maxey is falling through the cracks in a big way on DraftKings despite a favorable matchup against the Bucks.

In the nine games prior to getting hurt, Maxey had averaged 28.0 points, 5.9 assists, 5.1 rebounds, 2.9 three-pointers and 1.0 steals per game. While those aren’t Luka Doncic type numbers, Maxey clearly has upside at a falling $8,500 price tag. As of this writing Maxey is projected to be optimal 12.00% of the time this slate plays out on DraftKings. With only 5.50% of lineups expected to roster him, Maxey is the top spend up to be contrarian play on the slate.

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NBA DFS Mid-Priced Contrarian Pick

Knicks-Trail Blazers: Isaiah Hartenstein

Stokastic’s Optimality Projection
DraftKings: 15.50%
DFS Salary
DraftKings: $5,000

Isaiah Hartenstein has seen his price drop all the down to $5,000, and he’s the top contrarian mid-tier play on DraftKings. A fantasy darling not so long ago in the immediate aftermath of Mitchell Robinson getting hurt, Hartenstein has seen his production and playing time dip over the past month as a result of a nagging achilles injury. Hartenstein is only one month removed from playing massive minutes, however, and it’s reasonable to think he gets back to that point in the not so distant future. Either way, Hartenstein’s minutes ceiling is now baked into his price tag on DraftKings, and the field isn’t getting to him at nearly the rate they should be.

Despite showing clear value at a falling $5,000 price tag, Hartenstein is only projected to be in 8.00% of lineups on DraftKings. Compare that to his 15.50% optimal percentage and it makes sense why Stokastic’s tools have him as the second-highest graded leverage play on the slate.


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NBA DFS Low-Priced Contrarian Pick

Knicks-Trail Blazers: Alec Burks

Stokastic’s Optimality Projection
DraftKings: 7.80%
DFS Salary
DraftKings: $3,200

We’re back to dumpster diving for cheap differentiators, and Alec Burks is the catch of the day at $3,200. Although Burks seems to have already fallen out of favor in New York, his price tag puts him in play on a slate without a ton of really cheap value. Despite only projecting for 13.69 fantasy points, Burks stands out in big way from a leverage perspective, as he currently ranks as the fifth-highest graded leverage play on the board.

As of this writing, Stokastic’s tools have Burks optimal 7.80% of the time this slate plays out on DraftKings. With only 2.00% of lineups projected to roster him, it’s worth getting over the field on him in large field GPP’s.

Matt Belman graduated from Tulane University with a degree in Consumer Behavior. He has been playing and analyzing DFS full time since 2018. He has qualified for the 2023 DraftKings NBA World Championship (5x), the 2023 DraftKings MLB World Championship (2x), the 2023 FanDuel MLB World Championship (2x) and the 2023 DraftKings NFL World Championship. You can find him on X at @fantasytipsmatt.

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