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Fantasy Basketball Picks: Top DraftKings NBA DFS Targets for Celtics vs. Heat Showdown on May 19

Pearce Dietrich gives his top picks for Thursday’s Showdown contest on DraftKings between the Celtics and Heat.

Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals gets underway at 8:30 p.m. ET in Miami on Thursday night. The Heat will look to take a commanding lead of the series and take one step closer to punching their ticket to the NBA Finals.

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA Showdown $555K Shootaround [$105K to 1st] (BOS vs MIA)

Captain’s Picks

Jimmy Butler ($16,500) — The Heat play around with the injury report, but they don’t play around on the court. This is a no nonsense team. It’s blue collar and reminiscent of the 2004 Detroit Pistons. The team follows Jimmy Butler, and he has no problem leading. In Game 1, he set the tone (72.75 DKFP). His teammates know what is expected from them and his enemies know what to expect from him. Game 2 can be a knockout blow. Butler will play over 40 minutes again, and it would not be surprising to see his usage rate increase from the 32.8% in Game 1.

Marcus Smart ($10,800) — This is a contrarian option that opens up roster flexibility. With Smart missing Game 1, many DFS players will be reluctant to roster him. He’s probable for Game 2, but there isn’t a guarantee that he’ll play his full allotment of minutes. He likely will, but fantasy players will stay away. Judging from Smart’s sideline activity on Tuesday night — not his wardrobe — Smart will play the full contest and give everything he has. This is a must win game. The Celtics cannot afford to go down two games to the Heat. This play leans heavily on narrative and intangibles, but that’s how showdown contests are won.

FLEX Plays

Jayson Tatum ($10,600) — In the disastrous third quarter of Game 1, Tatum did not make a basket despite a 38.3% usage rate. This is not an anomaly. Tatum’s shooting can be erratic and the Heat have one of the best defenses in the NBA (108.4 defensive efficiency rating). He still finished with 29 points, eight rebounds, six assists and four steals. Imagine the fantasy points Tatum would have scored if he were only slightly below-average in the third. From the DFS perspective, it’s good to know that even when he’s missing and his team is down, Tatum will keep firing.

Tyler Herro ($6,800) — Boston’s second unit didn’t have an answer for Herro in Game 1. The Sixth Man of the Year played 27.5 minutes, almost all of his minutes were without the starters on the court. That resulted in a 31% usage rate — just tenths from being the most among all players — and 18 points, eight rebounds and three assists. That was a down game for Herro. He only made one of his five 3-point attempts and turned the ball over four times. A regular Herro works, but a super Herro breaks the slate.


Gabe Vincent ($4,400) — Heading into Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals, someone had to step up for the Heat. Jimmy Buckets will be Jimmy Buckets, but the Heat needed a secondary producer to beat the Celtics. Gabe Vincent was his foil in Game 1. Across 33 minutes with the first team, he scored 17 points and recorded three blocks. The blocks cannot be counted on, as Vincent averages 0.1 blocks per game over his career. However, Vincent only turned the ball over once. Steady play like that will secure Vincent over 30 minutes per game in this series.

Robert Williams III ($6,200) — With Al Horford out, Williams stepped up in Game 1 (18 points, nine rebounds and two blocks in 28 minutes). It’s expected that Horford will miss Game 2, but Williams (knee) is not guaranteed to play either (follow @DKLive on Twitter and download the DK Live app for updates). The Celtics will need Williams, or else they may have trouble with Bam Adebayo ($8,400). In the first two games of the second round when Joel Embiid was out, Adebayo scored 47 points and grabbed 21 rebounds. Williams held Adebayo to three points when they were matched up together in Game 1, on the other side, Williams scored eight points on Adebayo. This is a matchup the Celtics can exploit if they can get Williams on the court and keep him on the court.


Victor Oladipo ($5,200) — Injuries have ruined his career. At 30-years-old, it’s only going to get worse. Oladipo can be a solid second-unit contributor at times, but this does not appear to be the series where Oladipo will be a big factor. Erik Spoelstra understands the matchup and will leave his starters on the court for as long as possible. Oladipo did not play well in Game 1, but more significantly, he only played 15 minutes. It would be shocking if Oladipo ever plays more than 20 minutes in a competitive game in this series.

The Outcome

The Heat didn’t need any help to beat the Celtics at home, but they got it. The Celtics played without two starters in Game 1 on Tuesday. As if that wasn’t enough, all of the Celtics decided to sit out the third quarter — they were outscored by 25 points. The only reason the Celtics are here is because the Bucks went cold too many times. The Heat are a rare breed. They aren’t dependent on the three. The Heat do not need to be hot, the Heat can be cold and win by grinding their opponents down. The Celtics are not in a good spot on Thursday night.

Final score: Heat 109, Celtics 105

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA Showdown $555K Shootaround [$105K to 1st] (BOS vs MIA)

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is greenflagradio2) 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.

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