It’s the last night of the regular season with plenty on the line for a handful of teams. Nine of the 12 games are played at 8 p.m. ET.
Here are the ones to keep an eye on:
*The Knicks rematching the Cavaliers (Cleveland potentially playing for the third seed)
*The Spurs battling the Pelicans (both teams battling for playoff positioning)
*The Grizzlies against the Thunder (Oklahoma City playing for position)
*The Bucks taking on the Sixers (Sixers could lock up the three seed, which means this might be a first round matchup)
*The Nuggets against the Timberwolves (winner gets into the playoffs, loser doesn’t)
*The Raptors against the Heat (Miami playing for position)
*The Wizards taking on the Magic (Washington playing for position)
Other games at 8 p.m. ET include the Nets against the Celtics and the Pistons taking on the Bulls
10:30 p.m. ET has the Lakers against the Clippers, and important game between the Jazz and the Trail Blazers (winner gets the third seed out West), and the Rockets against Kings.
With it being the last day of the regular season, there are a lot of factors to consider in DFS. First, find games of importance. Teams that have something to play for are going to play their starters more and have a higher compete level. Teams like the Raptors and Rockets don’t have any incentive to play hard and risk injury.
Also remember that weird things happen on the final day. With a lot of starters resting, the 11th and 12th guy off the bench get extra run. On top of that, players have incentive laden contracts that cause them to do weird things like not shoot threes.
My favorite plays of the day can be found on the following slides in FanSided’s FanDuel daily picks. Each day in order to offer a variety of price points at each position, you can find two slides for each position–one for high-salary options and one for high-value options. Each pick is ranked on a scale of 1-5 stars to indicate the confidence in the pick. The final slide of this post has more detail on what each level means, but in short, more stars means more confidence in the selection on a points-per-dollar basis.
GET DRAFT HELP: Fantasy Pros Draft Wizard and Fantasy Football Tools
Important note, every day the goal of this post is not to give you a copy-and-paste lineup. Instead, each selection is given while highlighting the factors you need to consider when building a customized lineup for yourself. If you want to see an example lineup, you can find it on the final slide of the post, but I suggest you adjust your lineup to fit your personal taste.
To keep up with all of FanSided’s DFS NBA coverage head over to the fantasy basketball hub where each day you can find a post like this tailored for DraftKings as well as one specifically designed for usage on FanDuel. In this post, all salary and “fantasy points” references are to DraftKings scoring system and salaries. If you have any additional questions or thoughts or are looking for updates as we approach tipoff, follow @FanSidedFantasy on Twitter or you can follow my account @jeremylambert88.
Let’s take a look at your best options for both studs and value players at each position.
High Salary PG
Russell Westbrook, OKC vs MEM ($12,300): Westbrook needs 16 rebounds to average a triple-double for the season. If you know Westbrook, then you know that he’ll be chasing those rebounds and yelling at guys who don’t boxout for him. To go along with his likely 16 rebounds, he’ll get his usual double-digit points and assists. The Grizzlies are an easy matchup and Westbrook will probably play more minutes than he should in an effort to achieve round numbers. *****
Damian Lillard, POR vs UTA ($9,500): Lillard has missed value in his last two games, mainly due to his lower assist numbers. The Jazz present a tough defense, but Lillard knows how important this game is and can be trusted to raise his game. Especially with Portland at home and playing against a team on a back-to-back. He needs 40.7 fantasy points to reach value on Wednesday. Expect a bounce back performance as he jumps back over 40 fantasy points. ****
Jamal Murray, DEN at MIN ($6,900): Murray was down to 17.4 fantasy points against the Blazers on Monday. The Timberwolves are a much easier matchup, especially if they’re going to play Derrick Rose more than two minutes. Murray is averaging 37.2 fantasy points in three games against Minnesota this season. He needs 29.5 fantasy points to reach value on Wednesday. With everything on the line and against a below average defense, expect Murray to have a bounce back game. ****
High Value PG
Reggie Jackson, DET at CHI ($6,500): Jackson had 36.1 fantasy points against the Raptors on Monday. No Andre Drummond and Blake Griffin means Jackson is left to his own devices on Wednesday. They’ll need points and assists from someone and he’s the most likely guy to deliver. The Pistons might be down following a disappointing season, but Jackson needs these reps heading into next season and will look to showcase himself a bit. ***
Ricky Rubio, UTA at POR ($6,500): Rubio played only 20 minutes against the Warriors, but still managed 35.5 fantasy points. His minutes were down partly due to the hamstring injury, but mainly due to the Jazz blowing out the Warriors. With home court advantage on the line for Utah, there’s a good chance Rubio plays around 30 minutes in this one, assuming his hamstring holds up. If that’s the case, there’s a good chance he pushes 40 fantasy points. ****
Dejounte Murray, SA at NO ($6,300): Murray played only 15 minutes against the Kings on Monday. There’s always a chance Gregg Popovich punts in the last game of the season, but I suspect he’ll want to give Murray a playoff dress rehearsal. He’s done very well against the Pelicans this season, averaging 39.1 fantasy points in three games against them. Assuming he plays his usual minutes, there’s a good chance he’s over 30 fantasy points once again. ***
High Salary SG
Jrue Holiday, NO vs SA ($8,500): Holiday has been over value in seven straight. He had 58.1 fantasy points against the Spurs on Mar. 15. San Antonio has done about as good a job as you can do on Anthony Davis this season, which has led to guys like Holiday stepping up. The Pelicans will need a big game from the guys around Davis one more time if they want to improve their playoff standing. Holiday is the most likely guy to deliver and he should be over 40 fantasy points on Wednesday. ****
Donovan Mitchell, UTA at POR ($7,800): Mitchell finished with 31.1 fantasy points against the Warriors on Tuesday. He played just 26 minutes as the Jazz put the game away by halftime. Don’t expect Portland to go as easy. Mitchell is averaging 34 fantasy points in three games against the Trail Blazers this season. That number puts him right at value on Wednesday. He may not win Rookie of the Year, but he’s been extremely impressive this season and there is no reason to doubt him heading into the playoffs. He’ll raise his game and put first round opponent on notice. *****
Will Barton, DEN at MIN ($7,000): Gary Harris’ return cuts into Barton’s value a bit, but Harris isn’t playing guaranteed minutes right now. Even if Harris returns to the starting lineup, it’ll push Wilson Chandler to the bench, not Barton. He had 34.2 fantasy points against the Timberwolves a week ago. He needs 29.8 fantasy points to reach value on Wednesday and should end up around 35 fantasy points in this one. ****
High Value SG
Luke Kennard, DET at CHI ($6,100): Kennard has been over 30 fantasy points in each of his last two games. He’s playing over 30 minutes and getting plenty of shots late in the season. With the Pistons missing Andre Drummond and Blake Griffin, they need scoring from somewhere. He needs 26 fantasy points to reach value on Wednesday. It’s a great matchup and he should find himself over 30 fantasy points once again. ***
Josh Hart, LAL at LAC ($5,600): Hart posted 33.4 fantasy points against the Rockets on Tuesday. It’s possible that Andre Ingram pushes him out of the league after Ingram’s debut on Tuesday, but for now, Hart is the more reliable option. He’s been great down the stretch in these meaningless games and will get every opportunity to be great again. Expect him to be over 30 fantasy points for a fourth straight game. ***
Marco Belinelli, PHI vs MIL ($5,000): Belinelli was over value once again on Tuesday, posting 29.8 fantasy points against the Hawks. He and J.J. Redick continue to make for a dynamic shooting duo for the Sixers. Redick has been playing better lately and benefits from playing with the starters, but Belinelli’s lower salary works to his benefit. Grab one or grab both as the Sixers should play their usual rotations in an effort to grab the third seed. ****
High Salary SF
Jimmy Butler, MIN vs DEN ($7,800): If you don’t think Butler is going to play at least 30 minutes, don’t take the risk. Grab Paul George or Joe Ingles, both of whom should get 30-35 minutes. However, if you’re like me and think Butler will play big minutes knowing the importance of this game, then grab him. As long as he plays 30 minutes, he’ll be over value. Given the state of these two defenses, plenty of points should be scored. He’s a risk, but the ceiling is high and I’m confident in Tom Thidodeau’s ability to run guys into the ground when he shouldn’t. ***
MarShon Brooks, MEM at OKC ($7,500): Brooks was down to 23.7 fantasy points against the Timberwolves on Monday. It was his first miss since joining the Grizzlies last in the season. He struggled from the field, but still got plenty shots. He’ll get shots once again and the Thunder defense might be a bit relaxed. Someone has to score for Memphis and he’s been their best bet in recent weeks. Look for him to have a bounce back performance, finishing up with around 35 fantasy points. ***
Michael Beasley, NY at CLE ($6,900): Beasley had 37.3 fantasy points against the Cavaliers on Monday. It’s the last game of the season, the Knicks have nothing to play for, and Beasley is going to get a chance to show out. He’s been fairly solid as the starter this season and the Knicks certainly need his scoring. Look for him to play over 30 minutes and finish up with over 40 fantasy points. ****
High Value SF
Allen Crabbe, BKN at BOS ($5,800): Crabbe had 58 fantasy points against the Bulls on Monday. With Joe Harris being a late addition to the injury report and the Nets already missing DeMarre Carroll and Caris LeVert, Crabbe was a big beneficiary. If all those guys are out once again, Crabbe will see the extra minutes and opportunities. The Celtics have no incentive to play all that hard on Wednesday and could allow Crabbe to have another big night. ***
Kyle Anderson, SA at NO ($5,300): Anderson has been over value in five straight. He came off the bench against the Kings, but still played 26 minutes, finishing with 26 fantasy points. He had 33 fantasy points against the Pelicans on Mar. 15 and is averaging 27.9 fantasy points in three games against the Pelicans this season. He needs 23.4 fantasy points to reach value on Wednesday. Assuming the Spurs don’t rest guys and Anderson gets his usual 25-plus minutes, he’ll be over 25 fantasy points. ***
E’Twaun Moore, NO vs SA ($4,800): Moore is coming off a 32.5 fantasy point performance against the Clippers on Monday. He’s had 22.3 fantasy points in each of his last two games against the Spurs and needs 21.2 fantasy points to reach value on Wednesday. The Spurs will do their best to limit Anthony Davis, leaving more opportunities for role players like Moore. He’ll contribute points along with a handful or rebounds and assists, likely ending up at around 25 fantasy points. ***
High Salary PF
LaMarcus Aldridge, SA at NO ($9,200): Aldridge finally missed value on Monday, finishing with 40.8 fantasy points against the Kings. There’s always a chance that Gregg Popovich doesn’t tip his hand, rests his starters, and lets the seeding chips fall where they may. If you think that’s going to happen, then Aldridge is a risk. But assuming he treats this like a must win game, Aldridge will get his 35-plus minutes. He and Davis are high reward players, the matchup is tough for both guys, but they’ll both get their points. And Aldridge won’t hurt you as much if he’s slightly under. ****
Nikola Mirotic, NO vs SA ($7,000): Mirotic has been over 50 fantasy points in his last three games. The Spurs are a tough matchup, ranking first against the position in their last 15 games. But Mirotic should get his shots and rebounds as the Spurs focus their attention on Anthony Davis. He’s a streaky player, but he’s red hot right now, which bodes well for his value on Wednesday. He’ll need to step up if the Spurs are able to takeaway Davis and recent play suggests he will. ***
Kevin Love, CLE vs NY ($8,000): Love posted 39.5 fantasy points against the Knicks on Monday. He’s been over value in four of his last five and needs 35.4 fantasy points to reach value on Wednesday. He should play his usual 30 minutes as the Cavaliers hold out hope that they can lock up the third seed. He’ll get his points and his rebounding numbers should be up on Wednesday. He’ll push 40 fantasy points once again. ****
High Value PF
Ersan Ilyasova, PHI vs MIL ($6,100): Ilyasova had 45.6 fantasy points against the Hawks on Tuesday. The Sixers still have something to play for as a win gets them the three seed. The Bucks may find incentive in losing as a loss could drop them to seventh. Both of these things look good for Ilyasova’s value. He’s delivering for the Sixers right now and is showing no signs of slowing down. Expect him over 30 fantasy points once again. ****
Khem Birch, ORL vs WAS ($4,500): Birch has been over value in five straight, going 14-plus fantasy points over value in three of those contests. The Wizards are on a back-to-back, and while this should be a win for them, they’ve laid plenty of eggs this season. Birch is making the most of his playing time off the bench and makes for a great low cost option. He’ll get you at least 20 fantasy points and there’s a good chance he’s up to 25 fantasy points. ***
Jerami Grant, OKC vs MEM ($5,000): Grant has been over value in four of his last five and is coming off a 32 fantasy point performance against the Heat on Monday. There’s a chance that Oklahoma City will rest Carmelo Anthony, possibly Steven Adams, in a game they should win without either guy. If that happens, Grant will see extra playing time. And with Alex Abrines out, he’ll get more chances with the second unit. He should give you at least 25 fantasy points against the Grizzlies. ***
High Salary C
Nikola Jokic, DEN at MIN ($11,500): Jokic has been over value in seven straight and 10-plus fantasy points over value in six of those contests. He’s on another level right now, raising his game and carrying the Nuggets into a must-win game on Wednesday. He had 50.3 fantasy points against the Timberwolves a week ago and needs 49.5 fantasy points to reach value on Wednesday. Minnesota ranks 28th against the position in their last 15 games. It should be another big game for the Denver center in the rematch. *****
Karl-Anthony Towns, MIN vs DEN ($10,600): Towns had 44.6 fantasy points against the Nuggets a week ago. He needs 45.7 fantasy points to reach value on Wednesday. The Nuggets are 24th against the position in their last 15 games. Jimmy Butler’s return takes some opportunities away from him, but it also takes offensive pressure off him. It’s a great matchup and he and Jokic should put on a show for the second time in a week. *****
Hassan Whiteside, MIA vs TOR ($7,000): The Raptors are 23rd against the position in their last 15 games. Whiteside posted 36.1 fantasy points in 21 minutes against the Thunder on Monday. He’s not playing big minutes down the stretch, but he’s making the most of those minutes. He had 31.5 fantasy points in 23 minutes against the Raptors on Feb. 13. Even in limited minutes, he can be around 30 fantasy points. ***
High Value C
Greg Monroe, BOS vs BKN ($6,000): Monroe posted 21.2 fantasy points in 19 minutes against the Wizards on Tuesday. With the Celtics likely to rest some guys in the back-to-back, he should see some extra playing time. He had 40.1 fantasy points in 34 minutes against the Nets on Feb. 15. It’s a great matchup for Monroe and one he should dominate, assuming he gets enough playing time. He’s a slight risk at this salary, but if the game plays out with Boston limiting the minutes of their starters, he’ll have a monster game. **
Cristiano Felicio, CHI vs DET ($4,600): The Pistons are 25th against the position in their last 15 games and without Andre Drummond. Felicio was a value miss against the Nets and his ceiling isn’t all that high, but he gets big minutes to produce. He needs 19.8 fantasy points to reach value on Tuesday. He should provide enough scoring and rebounding to bounce back and be over value. ***
Aron Baynes, BOS vs BKN ($4,000): If you don’t like Monroe, you can roll with Baynes. He’s coming off a 20.2 fantasy point performance against the Wizards on Tuesday. He’s likely to see around 20 minutes of playing time once again as the Celtics rest Al Horford after playing him 32 minutes on Tuesday. He’s gone over 20 fantasy points in two games against the Nets this season. It’s an easy matchup and he should find himself over value again. ***
Example FanDuel Daily Picks Lineup
Where to find me for daily for NBA takes, articles, videos and updates:
PG: Jamal Murray
PG: Ricky Rubio
SG: Marco Belinelli
SG: Donovan Mitchell
SF: Allen Crabbe
SF: Michael Beasley
PF: Ersan Ilyasova
PF: Kevin Love
C: Hassan Whiteside
Explanation of the stars after each pick: Each one of my picks is ranked on a scale of one to five stars. Picks that I give five stars (∗∗∗∗∗) are players that you almost have to own and I have no reservations about owning at their price. Players that get four stars (∗∗∗∗) are players that I think are strong picks to build your roster around. Three-star players (∗∗∗) are middle-of-the-road solid picks who are fairly reliable to produce a good game. Picks receiving two stars (∗∗) are high-risk, high-reward players who do offer enough upside to be in my picks, but also have a significant risk factor that makes them dangerous. One star (∗) players are picks that are the best option around that price point, but who I don’t think are great options. I would take any one-star player over any option not in my picks, but they aren’t picks to build your roster around.