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Fantasy Basketball Picks: Top DraftKings NBA DFS Targets, Values for March 16

Stan Son gives his top studs and value plays at each position for Thursday’s fantasy basketball slate on DraftKings.

The number of games we have tonight is the same as the number of fingers on your hand. For those of you with more or fewer, I hope you understand. It’s time to survey the land and catch all the fantasy goodies that flow like the Rio Grande. Try not to attach to narratives, instead be objective like a student of Ayn Rand. Don’t cheat, for you risk being banned. Be wary of the players who are far too in demand while not having too many who are bland. Insert a few who have a range of outcomes that expand outside the normal bands. The main thing, though, is to do your research and select players by your own hand, not those jammed down your throat. That would make me sad and mad. May you have success and climb the leaderboards, to the heights of spaceships that are unmanned.

BOS, CHI, GS, MEM, MIN, PHI and WAS are playing the first game of a back-to-back. No teams played on Wednesday. Tyrese Haliburton ($9,700), Myles Turner ($8,100) and Brook Lopez ($7,800) are the notable players who are questionable. Keep abreast of all the injury news @dklive.

DraftKings Sportsbook has the SAC/BKN and IND/MIL games with the highest total at 238. The ORL/PHO game has the lowest total at 227.5. The Nuggets are the biggest favorite by 14.5 points over the Pistons while the BKN/SAC has the tightest spread at 2 points in favor of Brooklyn. There is another double-digit favorite on the slate, MIL -13 over IND. DET is the only home dog.

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Mikal Bridges, Brooklyn Nets vs. Sacramento Kings ($8,300) – Outside of three of 14 games since arriving in Brooklyn, the fantasy goodies under the Mikal Bridges have been flowing so much that the storm drains have been unable to contain them. As a result, the fantasy landscape has been blessed with the beautiful sites of 70-DKFP burgers and the sounds of the twine tickling. He’s scored at least 40 DKFP in eight of those contests with a 61 and 71 DKFP game on the resume. Bridges has put up over 30 real points in five of the last seven games and the usage rate has been in the 25% to 41% range. He’s averaging 35 minutes per contest and has received over 40 minutes three times. Due to his well-rounded fantasy game, the floor is relatively high.

The environment tonight should be a good one, as the Kings have been playing at the fastest pace over the last 10 games, while the Nets have been fifth. The Kings have also been 29th in defensive rating. Yummy.

De’Aaron Fox, Sacramento Kings at Brooklyn Nets ($8,900) – I love this game environment, as the pace should be fast and there should be plenty of possessions to rack up fantasy goodies. Fox garners a usage rate in the 30% range and plays around 34 minutes per night. He is one of the fastest players in the league and should thrive in this environment. Over the last 13 games, he’s gone for at least 40 DKFP in 11 games. Six of those were over 50 with a high of 77.25.

Other Options - Shai Gilgeous-Alexander ($9,600), Killian Hayes ($6,700), Jaden Ivey ($7,000), Spencer Dinwiddie ($7,900), Devin Booker ($9,900)


Cory Joseph, Detroit Pistons vs. Denver Nuggets ($4,900) – I can’t believe that I’m writing up Cory Joseph. What a time to be alive! On the season, he’s exceeded points expectations 80% of the time and, over the last six games, he’s gone for at least 23 DKFP in all with a high of 39.25 DKFP. He has scored double-digit points and racked up at least one steal in all of those contests. He delivers the dimes so the floor is relatively safe. More importantly, with the injuries in the backcourt for Detroit, Joseph has played over 30 minutes in four of those games. The ownership percentage has been minuscule because, well, he’s Cory Joseph. He will likely be rostered more heavily today since it’s a smaller slate, but could still go overlooked because, well, he’s Cory Joseph.

Other Options - Malik Monk ($4,500)



Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks vs. Indiana Pacers ($12,000) – Giannis averages 1.73 DKFP per minute and could put up the top raw score on the slate. The matchup is a juicy one, especially if Myles Turner ($8,100) sits, as the Pacers have been dead-last in defensive rating over the last 10 games. That said, there is a serious risk of blowout here, especially since Tyrese Haliburton ($9,700) is also questionable. Giannis could only get 28 minutes of run, which would produce a good score, but not one that justifies the price tag. I don’t think the ownership will be low enough to make the risk/reward favorable.

Jalen Williams, Oklahoma City Thunder at Toronto Raptors ($7,100) – The Raptors have been really good at neutralizing top options, especially big men. With guards, they have had a little more difficulty but they do seem to not let top options go buck wild. Shai is the top option for the Thunder, and he’s going to get his because he’s really, freaking good, but he will garner much of the defensive attention. Jalen isn’t so bad himself and the price is the cheapest out of the Shai, Giddey and Jalen triumvirate. Over the last seven games, Jalen has gone for at least 43 DKFP in six of those contests with a high of 55.25.

Other Options - Bobby Portis ($6,500) if Brook Lopez is out


Trey Lyles, Sacramento Kings at Brooklyn Nets ($4,000) – Lyles missed the last game due to his fracas with Brook Lopez. He’s back for tonight. On the season, he’s exceeded points expectations 100% of the time. This is because he doesn’t play a ton of minutes and is usually priced in the $3,000 range. Over the last six games, he’s gone for at least 20 DKFP in all with a high of 30, despite playing fewer than 20 minutes in two of those contests. The ceiling isn’t high but the floor is decent, and the game environment and possibility of 26 minutes of run, which he received in the most recent game, provide some paths to a ceiling game.

Other Options - Joe Ingles ($4,200), Jordan Nwora ($4,700)



Nikola Jokic, Denver Nuggets at Detroit Pistons ($11,600) – This writeup will be similar to the Giannis one. Jokic averages 1.68 DKFP per minute and could put up the most points on the slate. He’s a threat to triple-double on any given night. That said, the Nuggets are favored by 14.5 points so Jokic could only get 28 minutes of run. Will he put up enough points to make the price tag worth it? It’s always within the range of outcomes but I’d say the probabilities are lower. In addition, I don’t think the ownership will be low enough to make it worth it.

Domantas Sabonis, Sacramento Kings at Brooklyn Nets ($10,100) – This should be the best game environment on the slate. Both teams play fast, the Kings are matadors on defense and the spread is the tightest. Sabonis leads the league in double-doubles and is second in triple-doubles. Over the last five games, he’s been on an absolute tear, triple-doubling in four of those contests. Over the last eight games, he’s gone for at least 50 DKFP in seven of those with a high of 71.25.

Other Options - Nic Claxton ($6,600), Jakob Poeltl ($7,200), Wendell Carter Jr. ($6,500)


Jalen Duren, Detroit Pistons vs. Denver Nuggets ($5,200) – Duren doesn’t start, which makes me sad because he’s proven that he can play in the league. Granted, he isn’t much of an offensive threat, but he does great work on the boards and protects the rim. Over the last four games, he’s put up 22.25, 36.75, 36.75 and 20.5 DKFP while playing 18, 24, 21 and 21 minutes. While the price isn’t great and a ceiling outcome isn’t likely, the floor seems stable and he’s going to get run due to the number of injuries in the Pistons frontcourt.

Other Options - Isaiah Jackson ($5,400)

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is sontzu) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.