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FanDuel NBA DFS Lineup Picks (5/20/21): Daily Fantasy Basketball Advice

We’re primed for a single-game slate Thursday, as the Pacers and Wizards will battle it out in an elimination contest as the Eastern Conference portion of the play-in tournament concludes. FanDuel’s single-game format brings us a completely different roster format than we’re used to in conventional multi-game slates.

I’ll outline a pair of candidates for each of the three multiplier spots (MVP. STAR and PRO) in FanDuel’s single-game roster format, and I’ll also offer another two players to consider for the two Utility spots that accrue FanDuel points at a non-multiplier rate. Thursday’s game should offer an excellent DFS environment, considering the Pacers and Wizards combined for totals of 256, 295 and 265 points in their three regular-season meetings.

Read on to see my daily fantasy basketball lineup picks for FanDuel on 5/20/21.  You can also check out DraftKings lineup picks and injury news before lineups lock. Good luck, RotoBallers.

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FanDuel DFS MVP Picks (2x)

Russell Westbrook, PG- vs. IND ($16,000)

At this stage, it’s probably enough just to list Westbrook’s name and move on, but I’ll gladly go through the process of quickly laying out his case. Westbrook’s skill set is tailor made for a roster spot with a 2x multiplier, considering he’s filling out the stat sheet at a Hall-of-Fame rate and finished the regular season with an astounding 69.3 non-multiplier FD points over his final nine games on the strength of 26.3 points, 16.1 assists, 13.8 rebounds and 1.7 steals across 40.8 minutes. Westbrook had what would be considered a down game only by his impossible standards in the play-in loss to the Celtics on Tuesday with 55.3 FD points, but given that he crossed 60 FD points without a multiplier on an astounding 21 occasions during the regular season and posted 75.2 and 80.3 FD points in two contests versus the Pacers, he’s about as a locked-in play as there is for this scenario.

Domantas Sabonis, PF – at WAS ($15,000)

Sabonis trampled the Wizards for 71.3 and 70.1 FD non-multiplier points in the final two meetings against Washington during the regular season and posted 53.7 versus the Hornets in Tuesday’s play-in win. He’s averaging 48.2 FD points per 36 minutes without Caris LeVert (COVID-19 protocols) and Myles Turner (toe) on the floor as well while posting a 27.5 percent usage rate in that scenario. The Wizards were also vulnerable to centers all season, allowing the eighth-highest offensive efficiency (33.6 percent) to fives, along with the second-most FD points per game (57.9) to the position. And, like Westbrook, Sabonis is a natural for a 2x multiplier roster spot when considering his well-balanced season line of 20.3 points, 12.0 rebounds, 6.7 assists and 1.2 steals.

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FanDuel DFS STAR Picks (1.5x)

Bradley Beal – vs. IND ($14,500)

Beal could arguably be a candidate for an MVP spot as well given his prolific scoring prowess, but his more modest production in other categories compared to Westbrook and Sabonis make him a better fit at the 1.5x multiplier spot. Beal’s hamstring is still somewhat of a concern, but he’s now been able to play 35 and 36 minutes against the Hornets and Celtics, respectively, since returning from a three-game absence. He was also outstanding in the last two regular-season meetings against the Pacers earlier in May, posting tallies of 45.0 and 65.5 FD non-multiplier points in those contests while shooting 54.5 percent. Additionally, Indy gave up 41.9 FD points per game to twos in the last 15 games of the regular season, and Beal averaged 44.9 FD points over the last 14 regular-season games and Tuesday’s play-in contest versus the Celtics.

Malcolm Brogdon – at WAS ($13,500)

Brogdon’s previously troublesome hamstring seemed to hold up well against the Hornets on Tuesday, as he posted 16 points and eight assists over 21 minutes and then had a chance to sit with Indiana comfortably ahead. He should therefore be ready to roll Thursday, and, like Sabonis, should be in an advantageous position while taking the floor without both LeVert and Turner. Brogdon generated a 25.8 percent usage rage with that pair of teammates unavailable this season, and he compiled 42.8 FD non-multiplier points over 33 minutes in his one meeting with the Wizards this past regular season. Washington’s league-high pace of play should also benefit Brogdon in the form of a few extra possessions, as should the fact the Wizards gave up the sixth-most FD points per game (50.0) to point guards for the season.


FanDuel DFS PRO Picks (1.2x)

T.J. McConnell – at WAS ($12,500)

McConnell has put up 35.3 FD non-multiplier points per contest over his last 10 games, including the play-in win over the Hornets. The veteran point guard posted impressive averages of 13.3 points, 6.7 assists, 5.1 rebounds and 2.5 steals across 29.6 minutes during that stretch and should be set for another robust role off the bench Thursday. He’ll benefit from the Wizards’ vulnerability to point guards already detailed in Brogdon’s entry, and it’s also worth noting he posted tallies of 27.7 and 39.8 FD points in two of his three regular-season meetings versus Washington. Finally, consider the Wizards gave up the sixth-most steals per game (8.2) during the regular season, while thefts constitute a significant supplemental portion of McConnell’s fantasy production on any given night.

Oshae Brissett – at WAS ($11,500)

Brissett has been one of the pleasant surprises of the Pacers’ season, with the second-year forward finishing with a solid line of 10.9 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.0 block across 24.7 minutes while shooting an excellent 42.3 percent from behind the arc. Brissett put up 32.0 FD non-multiplier points across 33 minutes versus the Hornets in Tuesday’s play-in win, and he also offered a glimpse at his ceiling by exceeding 40 FD points on four occasions over his last 12 games. Brissett was relatively quiet in his two games against Washington in the regular season, but the Wizards were progressively weaker versus power forwards as the campaign wound down and allowed the fourth-most FD points per game (51.2) to fours in the last seven games of the season before surrendering a 50-point performance to Jayson Tatum in Tuesday’s play-in loss.

Utility Spot options to consider:

Doug McDermott ($10,000); Ish Smith ($9,000)

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