NBA

FanDuel Daily Fantasy Basketball Picks and Helper: Friday 3/22/24

Aidan Cotter
Aidan CotterAidanCotterFD
FanDuel Daily Fantasy Basketball Picks and Helper: Friday 3/22/24

Since NBA DFS is easier to predict than baseball or football, it would likely get plenty of votes as the best sport to play on FanDuel. Basketball players usually stick to the same minutes and produce at roughly the same rate. Sounds easy, right? Trust me -- it's not!

As a result, NBA daily fantasy is highly reliant on a player's opportunity, so you'll need to ensure that you're up to date with key injuries. Our projections -- which are powered by numberFire -- update throughout the day to reflect current news. You can also turn to numberFire for player news updates as well as a matchup heat map and lineup optimizer to help give you an edge.

On top of all that, here at FanDuel Research, we'll come at you each day with this NBA DFS primer, which breaks down some of the day's top plays at each position.

Let's dive into today's main slate on FanDuel.

Betting lines via the NBA odds at FanDuel Sportsbook. Projections and betting odds may change after this article is published.

NBA DFS Picks

Friday's main slate on FanDuel features five games. For a full breakdown, see numberFire's matchup heat map.

Top matchups:

Other games:

Guards

Top Plays

Shau Gilgeous-Alexander ($11,200) -- Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is the highest-salaried guard tonight, and his 51.3-FanDuel point (FP) numberFire projection leads all perimeter players. With 50-plus FPs in 9 of 14 games since the All-Star break, SGA is an obvious building block in a soft matchup with Toronto. Don't be scared off by the lopsided spread; SGA averages 54.6 FPPG when OKC wins by double-digits.

CJ McCollum ($7,000) -- C.J. McCollum has been uninspiring of late, exceeding 30 FPs just once in his last eight games. Still, that one game -- a 48.4-FP blow-up against Portland -- flashed the kind of upside McCollum still has, so we can turn to him as mid-range option with Brandon Ingram out. According to RotoGrinders CourtIQ, McCollum has averaged 36.2 FPPG and a 29.5% usage rate sans Ingram this season, up the 32.9 FPPG and 23.6% usage he averages with BI active.

Others to Consider

Devin Vassell ($7,400) -- Devin Vassell hasn't totaled 40 FPs in over two weeks, but he's still played at least 34 minutes in all but one game since the All-Star break. That workload should pay dividends against Memphis tonight. The Grizzlies are down to 15th in defensive rating over their last 15 games, during which they've allowed the seventh-most FPPG to SGs, per FantasyPros. San Antonio is a rare favorite here, so we should take advantage of their favorable game environments when we can.

Scotty Pippen Jr. ($5,200) -- The Grizzlies are again decimated by injuries. Scotty Pippen Jr. carries a questionable tag himself, but he's one of three Memphis guards with even at chance of playing. The other two are Jordan Goodwin and DeJon Jarreau. Goodwin is nearing his games limit as a two-way player while Jarreau has only exceeded 20 minutes once in his six appearances. Assuming Pippen plays, numberFire projects him for 29.2 FPs, making him the top point-per-dollar value among guards (5.61 FPs per $1,000). Goodwin would be similarly enticing if he's active while Jarreau is best saved for larger tournaments. Still, it truly depends on Memphis' injury report.

Wings

Top Plays

Anthony Edwards ($10,200) -- Anthony Edwards is questionable, though he played 37 minutes the night after tweaking his finger on Tuesday. Assuming Ant's active, he's set up well against Cleveland. Although this game has the slate's lowest total, it's the only game with a spread tighter than five points, too. The Cavs have dipped 17th in defensive rating since Evan Mobley exited the lineup, while Edwards has exceeded 50 FPS in six of his last seven games. His points + rebounds + assists prop is set at 40.5 on FanDuel Sportsbook.

Bruce Brown ($5,400) -- The Raptors are down several starters tonight, paving the way for Bruce Brown Jr. to play a sizable role once again. Brown's production and playing time have fluctuated in Toronto, but he's up to 29.2 minutes and 26 FPPG over the last five. A date with OKC isn't ideal, but at least this game has the slate's highest total (230). numberFire projections peg Brown for 28.4 FPs, good for the third-best point-per-dollar among SFs (5.26 FPs per $1,000).

Others to Consider

Jayson Tatum ($10,100) -- I won't fault anyone for rostering Jayson Tatum over Anthony Edwards tonight. Like Edwards, Tatum is questionable tonight, but he has exceeded 55 FPs in consecutive games and has the far softer matchup with Detroit. I do worry about the lopsided spread here, yet it's worth noting that Tatum shredded the Pistons for 66.4 FPs back in December.

Trey Murphy ($6,100) -- Like McCollum, Trey Murphy III should see more work with Brandon Ingram sidelined. Murphy's only been active twice with Ingram out this season, but he did average 33 minutes and 28.2 FPPG across those two. A matchup with the Heat isn't ideal, but the prospect of an enhanced role for Murphy is hard to pass up at this salary.

Bigs

Top Plays

Chet Holmgren ($8,300) -- Chet Holmgren went scorched earth his last time out, posing 35 points, 14 rebounds, 3 blocks, and 66.3 FPs against Utah. That came on the back of a 49.2-FP outing against Memphis, so we can consider the "rookie" trending up. Tonight's matchup with Toronto should allow Chet to stay hot. The Raptors have allowed the fourth-most points in the paint and the second-most FPPG to centers since the All-Star break while the Thunder have the slate's highest implied team total (123.0).

GG Jackson ($6,600) -- Gregory Jackson's salary is getting a bit steep for my liking, but it's hard to argue with his recent production. "GG" has been a menace since returning from injury, averaging 34.9 FPPG and going over 40 FPs twice in six games. He played at least 34 minutes in five of those -- something that should come in handy against a Spurs team that's 20th in defensive rating and has given up the most points in the paint since the All-Star break.

Others to Consider

Victor Wembanyama ($11,300) -- Now that Victor Wembanyama is in the $11K salary range, his 40-FP nights hurt a bit more than they used to. He's still capable of popping for 70 on any given night -- he's done that three times since February 29th -- but a bit more consistency would be nice for DFS players. Tonight's matchup with Memphis is high-risk but high-reward. The Grizzlies have given up the seventh-most FPPG to Cs this season, but Jaren Jackson Jr. did hold Wemby to 40.9 FPs the last time they met.

Jontay Porter ($4,900) -- Jontay Porter isn't on the injury report tonight, so we can safely assume he's overcome the illness that held him to an unexpected 2 minutes of action on Wednesday. Prior to that dud, Porter had exceeded 20 FPs in four straight games and peaked with a 41.2-FP outburst against Detroit. The Thunder are a tougher matchup than the lowly Pistons, but they've notably surrendered the seventh-most FPPG to Cs over the last 15 games. numberFire projects Porter for 29.9 FPs, making him the top point-per-dollar value on the slate (6.09 FPs per $1,000).


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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author’s advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.