Best New Year's Day player prop bets for Friday's NBA slate: Ball keeps on rolling

Charlotte Hornets guard LaMelo Ball
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Germantas Kneita


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Like most Lithuanians, I started watching basketball from the age of six. I'm based out in London and played basketball at the University of Lincoln here in the UK. I had always had an interest in the NBA but things really took off in the summer of 2010. That year Linas Kleiza led Lithuania to 3rd place at the World Championships and signed with the Toronto Raptors to replace the departing Chris Bosh. I've been a Raptors fan since that day and I've not missed a game since. I've been handicapping games for more than a decade, specializing in player props. For Germantas Kneita media enquiries, please email

It’s New Year’s Day and 2021 kicks off with 10 games on Friday that offer plenty of exciting betting opportunities. Be sure to check out our picks on the side and total for every game in our NBA previews, but right now it’s time to focus on player props. Below are three players who I believe will start their year off with a bang. Let’s dive in.

LaMelo Ball over 7.5 points (-128)

LaMelo Ball is coming into this game after scoring a career-high 20 points against the Dallas Mavericks. After going scoreless in his NBA debut, Ball has started to gain confidence, especially when it comes to shooting from deep. Against Dallas, he was able to make four of the five three-pointers that he took. He is now averaging two made three-pointers per game and after his last performance, I expect him to stay aggressive tonight, especially against a depleted Memphis team.

You can also check out our betting preview for Memphis Grizzlies vs. Charlotte Hornets.

Paul George over 3.5 assists (+110)

Paul George has embraced more of a playmaking role so far this season, something that I expect to continue tonight. He is now averaging 5.6 assists per game and has not recorded fewer than four since the opening night, where he had three. He has benefited from the arrival of Serge Ibaka, who offers a consistent shooting threat that he can kick the ball out to. Since Rudy Gobert will be manning the paint tonight for the Jazz, I expect George to look to kick out of drives more often than usual, keeping his assist streak going.

You can also check out our betting preview for Los Angeles Clippers vs. Utah Jazz.

Damian Lillard over 27.5 points (-112)

Damian Lillard has broken the 30-point mark in two of his four games this season, but when he has not, he has been very disappointing. Luckily for him, his opponents tonight will be the Golden State Warriors, who have been poor defensively and have conceded the second-most points per game in the NBA. He will have added motivation tonight as he will be looking to prove he is the premier point guard in the league, and not Stephen Curry. He should bounce back this game with another 30+ performance.

You can also check out our betting preview for Portland Trail Blazers vs. Golden State Warriors.

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