NBA DFS Picks Breakdown (Monday, Mar. 13): Unlimited Value in Pacers-Pistons

Monday features a seven-game slate starting at 7 p.m. ET.

Let’s dive into some of the top plays on the slate using the FantasyLabs tools and metrics.

Also, don’t forget that for large-field tournaments, you can utilize our Lineup Optimizer to effortlessly create up to 300 lineups, or use our Lineup Builder if you like to hand-build your lineups.

Note: Projections and Leverages Scores/Ratings may change throughout the day after this article is posted. The NBA DFS landscape changes quickly. 

Consult the NBA Player Models directly for any updates as we get closer to lock.

Use our PrizePicks promo code LABS for a $100 sign-up bonus on NBA player pick’ems.

NBA DFS Point Guard Picks


Trae Young has played some of his best basketball of the season recently. He’s scored at least 49.5 DraftKings points in three straight games, culminating with 60.25 DraftKings points Saturday vs. the Celtics. He posted a 40.3% usage rate in that contest, and he finished with 35 points and 13 assists. Overall, Young has increased his production to 1.50 DraftKings points per minute over the past month, which is the top mark among Monday’s backcourt options.

Young’s matchup on Monday is also a good one. The Timberwolves rank sixth in pace this season, and there are tons of points expected in this contest. The total currently sits at 245.0 points, while the Hawks’ implied team total of 125.25 ranks first on the slate. Minnesota has also allowed the seventh-most fantasy points per game to opposing point guards, so Young is in a great spot to continue his recent hot streak.


Monday’s matchup between the Pistons and Pacers is going to feature prominently in this article. Both teams are clearly focused on the future, which means landing as many ping-pong balls as possible in the Victor Wembanyama sweepstakes. The Pistons are currently in pole position in that race, while the Pacers are tied for the sixth-worst record in basketball with the Wizards and Blazers.

Both of these teams are going to be without several key players in this matchup. On the Detroit side, Cade Cunningham, Bojan Bogdanovic, Hamidou Diallo, and Isaiah Stewart all remain out with long-term injuries, and they’ll be joined on the sidelines by Jaden Ivey, Marvin Bagley, and Alec Burks. That doesn’t leave the team with many viable options, particularly when it comes to facilitators.

Expect Killian Hayes to be extremely busy at point guard. He was in a similar spot Saturday vs. the Pacers and responded with 17 points, 13 assists, and six rebounds in 36.9 minutes. He racked up 49.0 DraftKings points, and similar production is possible in Monday’s rematch. Hayes has averaged 1.06 DraftKings points per minute over the past month, and that number could be significantly higher given all the team’s absences.

Our PrizePicks and Underdog Fantasy simulations are also optimistic about Hayes’ fantasy prospects:

Fast Break

Kyrie Irving is currently questionable, but he would be an outstanding stud target on FanDuel if he’s able to suit up. His $9,600 salary comes with a Bargain Rating of 98%, and he leads the position with 12 Pro Trends. Luka Doncic also remains out for the Mavericks, so Irving could be asked to carry a larger workload than usual.

Derrick White has been an excellent player for the Celtics this season, and he’s racked up at least 35.5 FanDuel points in back-to-back games. He’s increased his fantasy production to 0.96 FanDuel points per minute over the past month, and he’s currently projected for just under 33 minutes in our NBA Models. He’s underpriced at $6,100 and usable in both backcourt spots.

NBA DFS Shooting Guard Picks


Devin Booker has been priced up to $10,100 on DraftKings, which is as expensive as he’s been all season. Still, there’s plenty to like about Booker in Monday’s matchup vs. the Warriors. For starters, Golden State has played at the fastest pace in the league this season, and they’ve been merely average on defense. The total in this contest is set at 236.0 points, which is the third-highest mark on the slate.

Booker is also going to have to carry a slightly elevated workload in this matchup. The team is without Kevin Durant due to injury, and they traded away Mikal Bridges and Cameron Johnson to secure him. Booker has increased his usage rate by +3.6% with all three players off the floor this season, resulting in an average of 1.46 DraftKings points per minute. That represents a significant boost from his average of 1.32 for the year.


On the Indy side, the Pacers are going to be without Tyrese Haliburton, Myles Turner, Bennedict Mathurin, and T.J. McConnell. Buddy Hield is also questionable, so they’re another team with tons of minutes and usage available.

Andrew Nembhard is someone who has had some monster games this season with Haliburton sidelined, and the absence of McConnell should only help. Nembhard has increased his usage rate by +7.0% and his assist rate by +21.7% with both players off the floor this season, resulting in an average of 0.98 DraftKings points per minute. He should see as many minutes as he can handle in this spot against a dreadful Pistons’ defense. They rank 28th in defensive efficiency, and Nembhard has the potential to be the best value on the entire slate.

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If you’re looking for a pure punt at shooting guard, R.J. Hampton fits the bill. He’s eligible at both guard spots on DraftKings, where his $3,300 salary comes with a Bargain Rating of 90%. Hampton has averaged 0.80 DraftKings points per minute for the year, and he’s projected for just over 23 minutes in our NBA Models. Historically, players with comparable salaries and minute projections have averaged a Plus/Minus of +2.22 (per the Trends tool).

If Irving is unable to suit up, Tim Hardaway Jr. becomes an outstanding value option at $5,800 on FanDuel. It results in a Bargain Rating of 96%, and THJ has increased his usage rate by a team-high +7.2% with Doncic, Irving, and Spencer Dinwiddie off the floor this season. He racked up 36.2 FanDuel points over 36.4 minutes with Doncic and Irving sidelined on Saturday, and he’s scored at least 32.9 FanDuel points in three straight games.

NBA DFS Small Forward Picks


With all the value available in Pacers-Pistons, we’re going to be able to spend up for whoever we want. Unfortunately, there aren’t a ton of “mega studs” to choose from. Giannis Antetokounmpo and Irving are both questionable, leaving Jayson Tatum as the clear top choice.

Fortunately, Tatum is a pretty darn good play. He’s seen an uptick in production over the past month, increasing his fantasy output to 1.49 DraftKings points per minute. He’s also coming off a huge performance in his last contest, racking up 67.25 DraftKings points on 34 points and 15 rebounds. The 15 boards was his second-highest mark of the year, and he could continue to be a bit more active than usual on the glass with Robert Williams sidelined.

Tatum also has plenty of scoring potential vs. the Rockets. They rank 29th in defensive efficiency for the year, and the Celtics’ implied team total of 122.0 ranks third on the slate. There is some blowout risk here – the Celtics are favored by 12.5 points on the road – but Tatum has excellent upside if this game stays competitive.


Chris Duarte burst onto the scene as a rookie in 2021-22, averaging 17.7 points per game across his first seven professional contests. Unfortunately, he has not been able to reach those heights since then. He’s been an afterthought for the Pacers when at full strength this season, limiting him to an average of just 19.7 minutes per game.

However, Duarte moved into the team’s starting lineup in their last contest, and he racked up 32.8 minutes. He was dreadful as a scorer, shooting just 2-11 from the field and 1-6 from 3-point range, but he has the chance for a bounce-back performance on Monday. Duarte has averaged 0.77 DraftKings points per minute this season, and he should be locked in for 30+ minutes vs. the Pistons.

Fast Break

I don’t blame you if you’ve never heard of Eugene Omoruyi. He’s bounced around the league over the past two years, and he’s played just five games with the Pistons. That said, he’s projected for 32 minutes in our NBA Models, and he’s priced at just $4,400 on FanDuel. Omoruyi has averaged a palatable 0.79 FanDuel points per minute in his limited playing time, so he’s worth considering at $4,400.

Anthony Edwards shouldn’t garner much ownership on this slate, which makes him an interesting pay-up option in tournaments. He hasn’t been particularly effective of late, but he is coming off 53.0 DraftKings points in his last outing. He’ll take the court in what is expected to be the highest-scoring matchup of the day, giving him a bit more upside than usual.

NBA DFS Power Forward Picks


If Giannis Antetokounmpo is able to suit up, you can certainly consider using him against the Kings. The Kings have been a fantasy goldmine for most of the year, racking ninth in the league in pace and 25th in defensive efficiency. The Bucks’ implied team total of 123.25 ranks second on the slate, while the total in this contest sits at 244.5 points.

Giannis could certainly be limited if he returns to the lineup, but no one on this slate can match him in per-minute productivity. He’s averaged 1.76 DraftKings points per minute for the year, and no one else is above 1.47. Giannis is projected for just under 32 minutes in our NBA Models, and that’s more than enough to make him a threat for the top fantasy performance of the day. That has plenty of value on a slate with a seemingly unlimited number of cheap options.


Isaiah Livers has been a non-factor for the Pistons for most of the year, but he took on a primary scoring role in their last contest. He led the team with 37.7 minutes and 20 field goal attempts in their last contest, including 10 3-pointers. His 39.5 DraftKings points were buoyed by four steals and two blocks, but he shot just 7-20 from the field. Some better shooting numbers could help offset a likely reduction in those categories on Monday.

Ultimately, Livers is too cheap for his projected role in a strong matchup vs. the Pacers, who rank seventh in pace and 26th in defensive efficiency.

Fast Break

Al Horford may not be the same player that he was in his prime, but he’s still pretty reliable for fantasy purposes. He’s been an outstanding source of value recently, posting an average Plus/Minus of +7.69 over his past 10 games, and he should continue to see a few additional minutes with Williams sidelined. He’s underpriced at $5,600 in a phenomenal matchup vs. the Rockets.

Xavier Tillman continues to stand out as underpriced on FanDuel, where his $6,000 salary comes with a Bargain Rating of 80%. He’s increased his production to 1.02 FanDuel points per minute over the past month, and he’s locked into around 30 minutes on most nights as the team’s last center standing.

NBA DFS Center Picks


Deandre Ayton is the ultimate luxury item for the Suns. They very rarely need him to carry a large offensive workload, especially now that they’ve added Durant to the mix.

That said, Ayton is more than capable of racking up points when given the opportunity. He’s coming off 22 points and 44.0 DraftKings points in his last contest, and he should be a bit busier than usual with Durant sidelined. Ayton played more than 37 minutes in the team’s last game, which represents a massive increase from his average of 30.4 for the year.


Isaiah Jackson rounds out the Pacers-Pistons value options, and he’s one of the best. He moved into the starting lineup in place of Turner in their last game and responded with 43.75 DraftKings points in 25.7 minutes. That’s not an outlier. Jackson has historically been one of the best per-minute producers in fantasy, so he’s capable of taking advantage of additional playing time. He’s played more than 25 minutes in 10 career games, and he’s averaged 35.08 DraftKings points in those contests. As long as he remains in the starting lineup, he’s very tough to fade against the same team he torched two nights ago.

Fast Break

Jalen Smith is an interesting pivot off Jackson. He’s expected to carry far less ownership, but Smith is an excellent fantasy producer in his own right. He’s averaged 1.23 FanDuel points per minute over the past month, and he racked up 38.3 FanDuel points Saturday vs. the Pistons. Playing both Pacers’ big men together is also very viable.

Rudy Gobert is questionable for the Timberwolves, but if he’s able to suit up, he’s another strong contrarian tournament option at center. Gobert has finally settled in with the Timberwolves, averaging 1.32 FanDuel points per minute over the past month. His production over that time frame is what we came to expect from Gobert with the Jazz, and the Hawks have been exploitable on the interior. They rank in the bottom five in points in the paint allowed per game and team rebound rate, so Gobert can do some damage in this spot.

2023-03-13 17:07:06