NBA

FanDuel Daily Fantasy Basketball Picks and Helper: Friday 5/10/24

Aidan Cotter
Aidan CotterAidanCotterFD
FanDuel Daily Fantasy Basketball Picks and Helper: Friday 5/10/24

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 two games. For a full breakdown, see numberFire's matchup heat map.

Guards

Top Plays

Tyrese Haliburton ($8,800) -- Tyrese Haliburton is fresh off his best fantasy performance of the postseason, notching 34 actual and 61.7 FanDuel points (FPs) in Game 2. That was a big-time upgrade over the 6 actual and 29.4 FPs he dropped in Game 1, though the opener does show how much variance Haliburton has. Expect something between those two outcomes tonight, with our model projecting him for 45.4 FPs. Within that is a projection of 20.4 real-world points, a tick higher than his points prop, currently set at 18.5 on FanDuel Sportsbook.

Donte DiVincenzo ($7,400) -- After averaging 40.9 FPPG against Indiana in the regular season, I had a feeling Donte DiVincenzo would fare well this series. Through two games, that's been true. DiVincenzo is averaging 26.5 real-world points on 54.1% shooting through two games, finishing with 34.1 and 43.2 FPs. It helps that, per FantasyPros, the Pacers are bottom-10 in FPPG allowed to SGs and SFs and that their frenetic pace has resulted in both games going over the pre-game total. With the Knicks down another starter, expect him to see at minimum the 44 minutes he played in Game 2.

T.J McConnell ($5,300) -- It's hard not to like what T.J. McConnell has done in the last three games. He's averaged 16.0 real-world points, 8.0 assists, and 2.3 steals across just 22.7 minutes over that span, notching at least 30 FPs in three straight outings. Indiana is +19 with McConnell on the floor this series, so an uptick in minutes wouldn't be surprising. At the very least, expect him to provide a spark off the bench, and it won't take much to outperform his salary.

Others to Consider

Jalen Brunson ($10,800) -- Jalen Brunson is our highest-projected PG tonight, but he's a little less enticing with two other five-figure salaries to choose from. The fact that he's on the road and nursing a foot injury doesn't help his case. Still, he's exceeded 45 FPs in six straight games, so there's a sound floor here

Nickeil Alexander-Walker ($4,700) -- Although Nickeil Alexander-Walker had a no-show in Game 1, he bounced back with 30.7 FPs in Game 2. This comes after he averaged 26.1 FPPG in the first round, so I'm optimistic his production can continue at home. He's a valuable salary-saver on a night ripe with high-salary names.

Wings

Top Plays

Anthony Edwards ($10,300) -- With Minnesota back at home, Anthony Edwards is who I'm building lineups around tonight. ANT managed "only" 41.9 FPs in Game 2, but he's still averaging 53.8 FPPG this postseason. He's notched at least 33 real-world points in four of six playoff games, so we know the floor is rock-solid. His points prop is set at 27.5 on FanDuel Sportsbook.

Josh Hart ($8,300) -- The bad news is that Josh Hart's salary is finally over $8K. The good news is he's been so productive that he's still worth targeting. Through eight postseason games, Hart is averaging 44.3 FPPG in a downright silly 46.8 minutes a night. He's played all 48 minutes in each of the first two games of this series, notching 58.6 and 48.5 FPs. With OG Anunoby out, Hart should continue to see as much work as he can handle.

Aaron Nesmith ($4,900) -- New York held Aaron Nesmith to 11.2 FPs in Game 2, his fewest in a game where he played at least 30 minutes all season. That marked his fifth straight game with fewer than 25 FPs. Clearly, Nesmith hasn't fared well this postseason, but he's still averaging nearly 35 minutes a game. Look for him to bounce back at home -- a place where he dropped 37.1 FPs in Game 3 of the first round and shot 44.1% from three in the regular season.

Others to Consider

Michael Porter ($7,300) -- Michael Porter Jr. struggled in Game 2, but that can be said about the entire Nuggets lineup. His 20 FPs were easily his fewest of the postseason, though he's still averaging a clean 35.9 FPPG through seven playoff games. We saw him reach 20 actual and 38.7 FanDuel points in Game 1, so there's proven upside.

Jaden McDaniels ($4,400) -- Jaden McDaniels has failed to crack 20 FPs in three of four games since his 41.1-FP explosion last round, but he's still played over 32 minutes per game over that stretch. The defensive stopper is an integral part of Minnesota's rotation and stands to benefit from their return home.

Bigs

Top Plays

Pascal Siakam ($7,700) -- Pascal Siakam has struggled to replicate his monster Games 1 and 2 of the first round, but he's still averaging 34 FPPG over the last six outings. That said, I'm bullish he has another ceiling game tonight with Anunoby out. OG spent over 50% of the time guarding Siakam in the first two games, so the latter should get a bump with the former sidelined. He's my favorite big to target in guard- or wing-centered lineups.

Precious Achiuwa ($5,000) -- Precious Achiuwa is in line for a sizable workload tonight, and he'll likely be a staple in optimizers. Despite managing a mere 14 FPs over 28 minutes in Game 2, Achiuwa is a projections darling tonight. Our model pegs him for 31.3 FPs across 32.9 minutes, making him the top point-per-dollar value on the slate (6.25 FPs per $1,000). He averaged 33.3 FPPG across an 18-game stretch in the starting lineup earlier in the year, so this isn't unprecedented territory.

Others to Consider

Nikola Jokic ($12,000) -- Tonight's a must-win for Denver, so I'd be shocked to see another Nikola Jokic stinker. It's not like he was bad in Games 1 and 2, but the Wolves did hold him under 60 FPs in both outings. The salary is still tough to get to, but there's no denying who has the slate's highest ceiling. We project him for 61.9 FPs, 13 more than the next-closest player. Even with a $12K salary, Jokic is the fifth-best point-per-dollar value on the slate (5.16 FPs per $1,000).

Myles Turner ($6,900) -- After a 16.9-FP dud in Game 2, I get the hesitation with Myles Turner. He's now failed to crack 25 FPs in three of the last four games, but his salary has reflected that dip. This is a great buy-low spot for Turner in a return to Indy, especially because he proved capable of scoring against New York's interior via his 23-point Game 1. Our model echoes my sentiment, projecting him for 37.3 FPs. That ranks third among centers but makes him the second-best point-per-dollar value on the slate (5.41 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.