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DraftKings, FanDuel Daily Fantasy Basketball Picks (3/17/22): Today's Top NBA DFS Lineups

We have a rare one-game slate on tap Thursday, with the Pistons and Magic taking the floor. The fact the teams have the worst records in the Eastern Conference certainly doesn't do much for the aesthetics of the single-game ledger, but for DFS aficionados, there's arguably never a bad night as long as contests are running!

We're naturally dealing with DraftKings' and FanDuel's single-game contests Thursday, changing up our usual strategy to an extent. Selecting the right players for the primary multiplier spot on each site -- Captain on DK and MVP on FD -- is especially important, but the entire situation is made more challenging by the fact two of the leading candidates for that spot are carrying questionable tags.

This article will provide you with my daily fantasy basketball lineup picks for DraftKings and FanDuel on 3/17/22. Remember to monitor the NBA injury report as the slate can completely change before lineups lock. Good luck, RotoBallers.

Editor's Note: Our incredible team of writers received five total writing awards and 13 award nominations by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association, tops in the industry! Congrats to all the award winners and nominees including NBA Writer of the Year, Best NFL Series, MLB Series, PGA Writer and Player Notes writer of the year. Be sure to follow their analysis, rankings and advice all year long, and win big with RotoBaller! Read More!


NBA DFS Captain (1.5x)/MVP Plays (2x)

Cade Cunningham - PG/SG, DET ($16,200 DK; $14,500 FD)

Cunningham is one of the two aforementioned stars whose status will have to be carefully monitored leading up to tip-off, as the star rookie is questionable due to an illness. If he is confirmed as available, he's an excellent candidate for this spot despite shooting an abysmal 17.9 percent in three games against Orlando this season. Cunningham comes in having scored over 40 fantasy points in three of his past four games, and he's averaging over 40 fantasy points per game in his last nine outings overall while shooting an improved 46.1 percent. Orlando is also allowing the 10th-highest offensive efficiency to two-guards (22.2 percent), and over 42 fantasy points per game to the position in the last 15.

Cole Anthony - PG, ORL ($12,600 DK; $13,000 FD)

Anthony has shot just 34.1 percent in three games against the Pistons this season, but he's still averaging 36.7 DK points in those games. He's also scored over 30 fantasy points in three straight and five of the last seven overall. Detroit has generally been a sieve against point guards, giving up the seventh-highest offensive efficiency to ones (26.6 percent) along with over 48 fantasy points per game to the position in the last 15 games. It's also worth noting Anthony comes in shooting a blistering 45.7 percent from three-point range in the last six games, while the Pistons are giving up NBA-high 38.0 percent shooting from behind the arc on the road this season.

ALSO CONSIDER: Marvin Bagley III, PF, DET ($11,400 DK; $12,500 FD)


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NBA DFS Utility/STAR (1.5x)/PRO (1.2x) Plays

Wendell Carter Jr. - PF, ORL ($9,400 DK, $14,000 FD)

I'd have considered Carter a borderline candidate for the Captain/MVP spot were he not carrying a questionable tag due to an ankle injury. The big man has been outstanding in what has turned into a breakout season, and he comes in averaging 18.6 points, 11.1 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game over his last 12 games. He's also averaging over 35 fantasy points per home game and has nailed the double-double bonus on DK in nine of his last 11 games alone. The Pistons are also allowing over 40 fantasy points on either site to PFs in the last 15, and their Eastern Conference-worst 42.2 percent shooting on the road also should afford Carter plenty of opportunities on the defensive glass.

Franz Wagner - SF, ORL ($7,000 DK; $10,500 FD)

Wagner has been in a bit of a funk that's seen him shoot just 38.0 percent, including 20.0 percent from distance, over the last five games. That makes him an interesting tournament play Thursday, especially if Carter does indeed sit out the game. Wagner is averaging 31.8 DK/31.1 FD points per 36 minutes without his teammate on the floor, and he's shooting 51.4 percent, including 50.0 percent from three-point range, in three games versus Detroit this season. The Pistons have also struggled to slow down threes, allowing NBA-high 25.4 percent offensive efficiency to the position, along with an Eastern Conference-high 44.8 DK/44.2 FD points per game.

Also consider: Saddiq Bey, SF, DET ($7,800 DK, $12,000 FD)  


NBA DFS Value Plays

Moritz Wagner - SF/PF, ORL ($4,600 DK; $8,500 FD)

Wagner has had some big games off the bench since returning from a rib injury, averaging 13.8 points, 7.5 rebounds and 1.7 assists across 18.5 minutes per game while shooting 50.0 percent. The big man's limited minutes make him a risk in anything other than a utility spot, but he can certainly save you some salary and has a great matchup versus a Pistons team that's allowed the ninth-highest offensive efficiency to frontcourt players (81.2 percent), and the fifth highest to second-unit players (44.6 percent). Then, if Carter does sit out Thursday, Wagner should also see a boost in minutes.

Kelly Olynyk - PF/C, DET ($4,000 DK; $7,000 FD)

Olynyk is strictly a tournament play, but he should enjoy an expanded role Thursday with Jerami Grant (knee) sidelined. Olynyk owns a 22.3 percent usage rate and averages 39.0 DK/37.9 FD points per 36 minutes without his teammate on the floor, and he posted 43 DK/46.2 FD points in his one prior game against Orlando this season. The Magic have also struggled defending frontcourt players and are allowing an Eastern Conference-high 49.8 DK/48.4 FD points per game to PFs on the season, as well as an Eastern Conference-high 37.7 percent three-point shooting at home.

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