NBA DFS Picks & Building Blocks: Jaylen Brown + A Pack of Timberwolves (January 22)

Monday welcomes a new week with a seven-game featured slate locking at 7 p.m. ET lock 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, including some intriguing playing time situations that provide steady value options. Let’s dig into the NBA DFS picks and core plays like Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum and a pack of Timberwolves.

NBA DFS Picks & Building Blocks Today: Monday, January 22

Jaylen Brown: Boston Celtics at Dallas Mavericks

This is a back-to-back for the Celtics, as well as the third game in the last four days. Boston took care of business last night in Houston, topping the Rockets 116-107. Al Horford and Jrue Holiday both sat that one out, but they will be playing tonight. Kristaps Porzingis will be getting the night off, which is not much of a surprise.

This game should be a fun one, with the Celtics 3-point road favorites and the game has a surprisingly high 239.5-point total. This is a testament to just how good both offenses have been this season. Jaylen Brown has been terrific, with three games of more than 47 fantasy points in his last six appearances and two of the games seeing him play less than 32 minutes. Horford does not have the same impact on the offense that Porzingis does, so that means additional field goal attempts should be available for Brown and Jayson Tatum. Brown has the slight discount, which is what gives him the nod over Tatum.

Derrick White looks like a strong option on DraftKings, with Holiday and Horford neutral plays. Kyrie Irving hopefully will be motivated against one of his former teams, and he is coming off a dreadful performance against the Lakers on Wednesday, which could keep some gamers away. This was an extended break for the Mavericks, and that should bode well for Luka Doncic getting some rest for his variety of nagging injuries that have plagued him this season. Even with the tough Boston defense, this duo has enough usage that they should be just fine, and it looks like they are going underrepresented in tournaments.

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Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Charlotte Hornets

Mike Conley is out tonight and Anthony Edwards is dealing with an illness, so it would not be a surprise if he sat as well. Minnesota is currently listed as a 12.5-point home favorite and should easily dispatch the Hornets, even without two starters.

Nickeil Alexander-Walker is projected to be the most rostered player tonight on both DraftKings (73.0%) and FanDuel (60.7%), even with a conservative median projection of 22 fantasy points. He has the coveted shooting guard and small forward eligibility, which has him eligible for five roster slots on DraftKings and four on the blue site.

Kyle Anderson had played more than 22 minutes only once in the last five games (27), which has led to the DraftKings salary algorithm dropping his cap hit to just $3,700. If Edwards sits, Jaden McDaniels will move from a neutral option to a strong play. He should get some mop-up duty in the final frame with the second unit, but if he does not have to battle Edwards for usage, his prospects increase for the full game.

Bigs against Charlotte is still a thing, so Karl-Anthony Towns and Rudy Gobert each project well, though there is an elevated risk of late-game rest if the Timberwolves are up big in the second half. Finally, Naz Reid is too expensive on FanDuel ($6,300), but he looks good on DraftKings ($4,900).

Miles Bridges is the only notable player for the Hornets, who have a tough matchup against a relentless Minnesota defense.

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Phoenix Suns vs. Chicago Bulls

This is a back-to-back and the third game in four days for the Suns, who held off the Indiana Pacers 117-110 in the desert last night. Eric Gordon (wrist) and Grayson Allen (knee) are both questionable, with the former the most likely to miss tonight. Jusuf Nurkic fouled out in just 19 minutes last night, but not before grabbing a whopping 13 rebounds and torpedoing Sunday’s recommended wager. This is a matchup more suited for him, so do not skip over the Bosnian Bear, particularly on the late slate.

Kevin Durant (40) and Bradley Beal (38) played above-average minutes, while Devin Booker (36) came in right around his typical workload. Phoenix is favored by only 5.5 points, which is a little surprising considering that Zach LaVine is out. This is the first game of a three-stop West Coast roadie for the Bulls, who had a one-game stop at home Saturday, when they easily dispatched the Memphis Grizzlies 125-96.

Phoenix begins a seven-game road trip on Wednesday, so banking a win tonight will be key. Chicago has a decent defense, but it is nothing that should dissuade gamers from looking to the usual suspects from the Suns.

Additional NBA DFS Pick — Sports Betting Opportunities

Khris Middleton is someone to look to in the sports wagering market tonight, with the under on his under 5.5 assists prop. The line is currently available at +120, and per the true odds of +106 (how OddsShopper measures the potential expected ROI of a given wager), this opportunity has a solid 5% expected ROI as a function of the inefficient line.

It is crucial to take advantage of OddsShopper to look at all the available lines since that can easily be worth another 2% to 3% for your ROI, even on perfectly neutral bets, based on how the different books value things. To demonstrate this very concept, look below — you can see that sharp book Pinnacle has the 5.5 priced at -104, which is a significant difference compared to the plus money currently available on most books, as well as the +120 on bet365 that is likely to disappear quickly.

This season, Middleton is averaging 25.6 minutes and 5.0 assists per game. His per-36-minute assist rate of 7.1 is the second best of his career.

NBA Bet Pro currently has the 32-year-old projected for 30.0 minutes and 5.02 assists. The Bucks are 12.5-point road favorites, so the hope is that they are able to handle the Pistons quickly, leading to less time on the court for the key players. That was not the case when these teams played on Saturday as the Pistons kept it close for most of the game, which saw the starters playing heavy minutes to secure a 141-135 victory. Middleton played 33 minutes with a well-rounded stat line, including four assists. This wager is likely to go down to the wire, which is why we will be rooting for a Buck blowout victory, keeping Middleton below 30 minutes of action.

Here is a terrific article from Dave “Loughy” Loughran on OddsShopper breaking down why it is important to consider wagering on unders.

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Final Thoughts on NBA DFS Picks & Building Blocks Today

Be sure to get all the latest news and analysis by tuning into the Stokastic Deeper Dive and Live Before Lock Shows at 5:00 p.m. ET on YouTube, brought to you by BetMGM– new users, use this link to receive $158 in Bonus Bets when you bet $5 ahead of Super Bowl 58! 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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