Best player prop bets for Friday’s NBA slate: Heat to cool off Ant Man
We are tipping off the weekend with a 10-game schedule in the NBA, offering plenty of opportunities to find great value on the betting market. Among the teams in action on Friday are the Philadelphia 76ers, Boston Celtics, Milwaukee Bucks, Utah Jazz, and Phoenix Suns. Who is in line for a big night at the office, and who might struggle?
Let’s take a look at the four best player prop bets for Friday’s slate.
Anthony Edwards Under 22.5 points (-113)
There is no denying that Edwards is on fire at the moment, but his hot streak has inflated his points quota and has thus created solid value on an under play. The No. 1 overall pick in last year’s draft has scored 25, 29, and 42 points over the past three games. However, it must be noted that the Minnesota Timberwolves were playing against the Golden State Warriors, New Orleans Pelicans, and Memphis Grizzlies in those three contests—not exactly defensive juggernauts. The Miami Heat, on the other hand, are second in the Eastern Conference and fourth in the NBA in scoring defense (107.6 ppg allowed). They also play at the third-slowest pace in the association and during the last three games they have played at the slowest pace in the entire league. There just aren’t going to be a lot of offensive statistics to go around on Friday. It should also be noted that Miami leads the NBA by a country mile in fewest points in the paint allowed. Edwards will have to do his damage from the perimeter, and although he has been hot of late his outside shooting is inconsistent at best.
Seth Curry Over 2.5 three-pointers made (+125)
Don’t forget about the other Curry brother. Seth has been an outstanding role player for the Eastern Conference-leading 76ers, averaging 12.4 ppg while shooting 44.0 percent from three-point range. The former Duke standout has drained at least three triples in three consecutive contests and in five of the last six. This stretch includes a 6-for-6 performance from the land of plenty during last Sunday’s victory over San Antonio. There is no reason why Curry won’t carve up the Pelicans, as well. New Orleans is dead last in the NBA in three-pointers allowed per game. In addition to terrible defense, part of the reason for that is because the Pelicans play at a fast pace (second-fastest in the association over the last three games); more possessions mean more statistics for everyone involved. At plus money, Curry sinking at least three shots from downtown is way too intriguing to pass up.
Nikola Jokic to be game-high scorer (-135)
Jokic is always a decent bet to be a game’s leading scorer unless the Denver Nuggets are going up against Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors or Bradley Beal and the Washington Wizards. The MVP frontrunner is averaging 26.4 ppg for the season and now he is scoring even more since Jamal Murray is out (torn ACL). Jokic has scored at least 30 points in three straight outings during the month of May. With Murray sidelined, Michael Porter Jr. is the only real threat on Denver to score more than Jokic. MPJ, however, has been held to fewer than 20 points in the last two games. Also, even though Jazz have Rudy Gobert they are giving up the eighth-most points in the paint. Jokic should be on his way to a big night, and Utah doesn’t have anyone who can match him with Donovan Mitchell injured.
Kemba Walker Over 5.5 assists (+118)
I would prefer a 4.5 number, but at well over plus money there is still good value on 5.5. During one stretch from late March through mid-April, Walker dished out at least six assists in eight consecutive contests. An injury has halted some of his progress, but the former UConn standout should be back and business on Friday with a game under his belt. He returned on Wednesday against Orlando and distributed four assists in a modest 28 minutes of work. More playing time can be expected against the Chicago Bulls. The Bulls just watched the Charlotte Hornets assist on 28 of 39 baskets Thursday. Tired legs on the second leg of a back-to-back situation should help Walker and company run circles around Chicago’s defense. Keep in mind that Jaylen Brown is out for Boston, which means more playing time and more time with the ball in his hands for Walker.