NBA DFS Picks & Building Blocks: Domantas Sabonis is the DFS KEY on Saturday (March 18)

Saturday’s NBA action brings a condensed six-game main slate that locks at 7:00 p.m. ET on both 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 for DraftKings and FanDuel lineups, including Domantas Sabonis, who currently leads the league in both rebounding and double-doubles.

NBA DFS Picks Today: Saturday, March 18

Core Play of the Day — Domantas Sabonis: Sacramento Kings-Washington Wizards

This is the third game in four days for Sacramento as they are on an East Coast swing. Domantas Sabonis has been sublime this season and he has taken things up a notch over the last month with at least 39 fantasy points performances in 13 appearances.

During this timeframe he has averaged a reasonable 35.5 minutes and 13.1 field goal attempts with a stellar 60% conversion rate. The 26-year-old is averaging 20.5 points, 13.9 rebounds, 8.1 assists and 1.6 combined blocks and steals in this stretch. On the season he is leading the league with 12.6 rebounds per game, 56 double-doubles and his 11 triple-doubles are the second most this year. This is a fine matchup in Washington against the Wizards and there is some hope the home team can keep things close, which in turn would mean that Sacramento needs more out of Sabonis.

De’Aaron Fox is also in play for the Kings and if Kevin Huerter (hamstring) or Trey Lyles (shoulder) are out, additional opportunities would open up for Harrison Barnes, Malik Monk and rookie Keegan Murray.

Kyle Kuzma is banged up and only played 25 minutes last night. If he is out, there would be a trickledown in fantasy opportunities for Bradley Beal and Kristaps Porzingis and additional minutes for Deni Avdija.

Minnesota Timberwolves-Toronto Raptors

Last night the Timberwolves lost 139-131 in double-overtime to the Bulls in Chicago. Anthony Edwards is doubtful with an ankle sprain and Jaylen Nowell is still dealing with knee soreness. Plus Rudy Gobert (ankle) is perpetually a game-time decision and even fallback Naz Reid is banged up. Oh and with this being a back-to-back, that means Mike Conley’s status is cloudy as well.

Depending on who is available, Minnesota is going to be one of the better situations to mine value on Saturday. Kyle Anderson, Nickeil Alexander-Walker and Jaden McDaniels look like the best point-per-dollar options assuming Edwards is out. Then it becomes an evershifting puzzle that will not have clarity until the injury report later this evening.

Toronto has a 5-5 record, though the Raptors have won their last two games. They are in the mix for a spot in the Play-In Tournament and with a little luck can be one of the the upper two seeds.

Head coach Nick Nurse has once again tightened the rotation, so Pascal Siakam, Fred VanVleet and Jakob Poeltl who rejoined the Raptors at the trade deadline, are the primary trio. Scottie Barnes, OG Anunoby and Gary Trent Jr. are tournament options who can provide 30-plus fantasy point upside if things are going their way as well as being solid differentiation options on the six-game slate.

Additional NBA DFS Building Blocks Pick — Sports Betting Opportunities

Fred VanVleet looks to be healthy and finally firing on all cylinders.  The books have set the total for his points + rebounds + assists (PRA) prop to 32.5. Over his last six games he has averaged 33.0 PRA, with three games on either side of tonight’s 32.5 PRA milestone.

NBA Bet Pro has VanVleet projected for 35.9 minutes 20.24 points, 4.35 rebounds and 7.83 assists for 32.42 PRA. While this projection is right on the target, the -110 line at BetMGM, along with a 59% probability of him surpassing this threshold, leads to a strong 6% expected ROI.

Did you know that you can get two free months of Stokastic+ Platinum for signing up and making your first bet at BetMGM? Claim here today!


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Boston Celtics-Utah Jazz

Tonight is the second-leg of a back-to-back for the Celtics who held off a fourth quarter comeback in Portland last night before ultimately triumphing over the Trail Blazers 126-112. The core Boston quartet saw heavy minutes last night, though Jaylen Brown (37), Marcus Smart (36) and Derrick White (36) are all on track to play tonight.

Jayson Tatum (36) is questionable with a sore hip and Al Horford logged 27 minutes yesterday, typically he does not play on consecutive days, Malcolm Brogdon missed Friday’s action with a sore Achilles and there is a decent chance he is out again tonight as Boston does have the luxury of being 4.5 point road favorites. Finally, Robert Williams and Payton Pritchard will not return to action until next week at the earliest.

Tatum and Brown are the primary DFS targets tonight and if either receives a night off, the other becomes one of the best plays of the day.  Smart and White are appealing as long as Brogdon remains out and for those feeling frisky, Blake Griffin would become a tournament differentiation option if he draws a start for Horford.

It is likely someone is getting the night off for Boston, so be sure to keep tabs on this game of musical chairs.

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Walker Kessler continues to have an impressive rookie season and Jazz fans are hardly missing defensive stalwart Rudy Gobert. Over his last eight games, Kessler has churned out five double-doubles while averaging 11.3 points, 12.6 rebounds and an impressive 3.8 blocks. Of course the blocks are the key ingredient for his fantasy outbursts and he is capable of reaching the forty fantasy point plateau against any opponent.

Jordan Clarkson has missed nearly two weeks with a sprained finger on this left hand, though he is closing in on a return. If he is available tonight, that tempers the fantasy point per dollar ratio for the remaining Utah players who have all received salary increases during his absence. If he remains out, then we will have some different decisions.

Boston has a stout defense, but with various players dinged up and this not a “crucial” game, it would not be a surprise to see the Jazz with around 112 points which is what the Celtics have ceded on average over their last four tilts.

Lauri Markkanen is a luxury option, though the sixth year forward has continued to impress and it is unlikely that he sees his popularity crest very far into double-digits. He is a tremendous scorer and now that he is the top option on his team, he has averaged a career best 25.4 points and a tick over 40 fantasy points.

Kelly Olynyk benefits with Clarkson being out as one of the few other members of the Jazz who can create his own offense. Talen Horton-Tucker is a risky option as he has been getting all of his fantasy goodness via unsustainable efficiency and at some point the music is going to stop and his supporters will be left without a chair.

Final Thoughts on NBA DFS Picks Building Blocks Today

Saturday sees games tipping off in three distinct waves, with five of the six matchups beginning within the first hour of lock. Get ready for the slate with all of the latest analysis and information by tuning in to the Stokastic Live Before Lock show at 6:00 p.m. ET on YouTube, brought to you by PrizePicks.

Eric MacPherson
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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