NBA DFS Picks & Building Blocks: Western Conference Finals Game 1! (May 22)

Wednesday brings a new matchup as the Minnesota Timberwolves host the Dallas Mavericks for Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals. The action will be underway at 8:30 p.m. ET 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. Let’s dig into the NBA DFS picks and core plays like Anthony Edwards, Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving.

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NBA DFS Picks & Building Blocks Today: Wednesday, May 22

NBA DFS Picks: Building Blocks

Anthony Edwards: Timberwolves vs. Mavericks

Stokastic’s Fantasy Point Projections
DraftKings: 48.57 | FanDuel: 47.19
Stokastic’s Rostership Projections
DraftKings: 59.2% | FanDuel: 52.5%
DFS Salary
DraftKings: $11,400 | FanDuel: $15,500

Sunday saw Anthony Edwards and the Timberwolves come back from a 20 point deficit to upset the Nuggets in Denver. It was not what Nikola Jokic and coach Mike Malone expected, but that is why they play the games.

Mike Conley is on the injury report, but after missing Game 5, he played 31.2 and 38.5 minutes, so he should be fine.

Though Edwards scored just 16 points in the 98-90 victory, he was everywhere with eight rebounds, seven assists and two steals. Minnesota is favored by four tonight, but as we saw on Tuesday, anything can happen. In the regular season, Edwards averaged 34.8 minutes, 24.5 points 5.0 rebounds, 5.8 assists and 2.5 combined blocks and steals against Dallas. Of course things are going to be tightened up tonight both from a Dallas defensive perspective, but also with the Minnesota rotation as compared to the non-playoff games. Still, the advantage goes to Edwards.

Karl-Anthony Towns was a steady fantasy producer in the last round and he should be able to flirt with 20 points and 10 rebounds more often than not in this matchup. Of course he will be competing with teammates Rudy Gobert and Naz Reid on the glass, as well as with the Mavericks, who have been an above average rebounding team. The later duo actually has the best fantasy point per dollar ratio of anyone on DraftKings, with Gobert and Edwards ranking third and second on FanDuel.

Conley, Nickeil Alexander-Walker and Jaden McDaniel are the remaining trio to target for the Timberwolves. Kyle Anderson should see around 10 minutes, but he has been surpassed by Reid and Alexander-Walker, so he is more of an emergency option for Minnesota than a steady contributor.

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Luka Doncic: Mavericks at Timberwolves

Stokastic’s Fantasy Point Projections
DraftKings: 58.23 | FanDuel: 55.25
Stokastic’s Rostership Projections
DraftKings: 69.5% | FanDuel: 62.1%
DFS Salary
DraftKings: $13,200 | FanDuel: $17000

Luka Doncic rates out as the best fantasy point per dollar option on FanDuel, despite his lofty salary. He falls to fourth on DraftKings, though is still the coveted building block across both sites. It is hard to consider going with another option in the highest multiplier slot on FanDuel, where he has a median fantasy projection that it 10 points higher than Edwards. DraftKings comes with the 50% salary tax for

Kyrie Irving was taking on more of a facilitation and defender role against the Thunder. He did have three games of 20-to-22 points, but three others with 12 or less, including nine twice. There is a chance that his role reverts back to that of a scoring option, but coach Jason Kidd has been guarded about his strategy for this new series. It is hard to be excited for Irving based on his salary and projection, but that is based on a median expectation and not a realistically wide range of outcomes. He is expected to be on around half of all FanDuel rosters, but that slips down to closer to one-third on DraftKings.

Daniel Gafford and Dereck Lively II have been splitting the center minutes, with the veteran starting and the rookie seeing a slightly larger share of the playing time. Going against Towns and Gobert is going to be vastly different than the Oklahoma City frontcourt, with foul trouble a strong possibility that could dramatically shape this shared role. Both are in play, but their is less certainty on a game-to-game basis.

Derrick Jones Jr. should continue to see 30-to-35 minutes per game, but he is a tertiary offensive option and on the court for his defense. Josh Green should lead the non-center reserves with around 18-to-20 minutes of run, with veteran Tim Hardaway Jr. and backup guard Jaden Hardy in the 10-to-12 minute range.

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Today’s Top Sports Betting Pick

PJ Washington is someone to consider going against in the sports wagering world for his under 12.5 points prop. This proposition is currently available at -115 on Unibet, Caesars, Hard Rockand PointsBet. Looking at the -121 “true odds” (how OddsShopper measures the potential expected ROI of a given wager), we can see there is a still 2.4% expected ROI with the current line.

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. We can see that the current line on the trio of operators stands out dramatically when compared to the -143 offered by sharp book Pinnacle.

NBA Bet Pro has Washington projected for 36.6 minutes and 12.16 points, which is just below the 12.5 milestone. This is a slim profit line, so getting the best number is crucial, so fortunately it is offered on a few different books.

In the last series, Washington was called upon for additional offense and in the middle three games, he scored 29, 27 and 21 points on 18, 23 and 19 field goal attempts. In the last two games, he totaled 19 points on just 15 field goal attempts, though he was still active as a rebounder. Those three games have buoyed Washington’s postseason scoring average to 14.3. In the other nine games, he had 13 or more points twice, 11 once, 10 four times, with the two lowest games being nine and two. If Washington has three green light again, he could crush this line, but that seems like more of an outlier event. He could get there on efficiency, but this is still a wager to target.

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Final Thoughts on NBA DFS Picks & Building Blocks Today

Get all the latest news and updates for NBA DFS picks today on the Stokastic NBA Live Before Lock Show at 8:00 p.m. ET on YouTube, breaking down all of the key elements, including even more on Anthony Edwards, Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving, for today’s slate. Brought to you by Sleeper – new users, use this link to receive a $100 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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