Best player props for Thursday’s NBA slate: Dort set to keep on scoring
The NBA has an interesting six-game slate for us tonight that could have a big impact on this season’s playoff picture. Two teams that are desperate to stay in contention will be in action, as the Pelicans will look to avoid a slip up against the Thunder and the Raptors will look to sweep the series against the Nuggets. Losses for either team could knock them out of the play-in race.
You can see the full previews for tonight’s games here, but for now let’s dive right into my top player prop picks.
Luguentz Dort over 19.5 points (+114)
With the Thunder in tank mode, Luguentz Dort has emerged as this team’s offensive leader whilst Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is out of the line-up. That has meant that over the last six games that he has played, he is scoring over 25 points per night. Dort is also averaging close to 18 field goal attempts per game in April, five more than any other month this season. There is no reason to suspect this level of offensive aggression would suddenly drop off here.
These two teams both rank in the top 10 in the league in terms of pace over the last 10 games, meaning he should get plenty of opportunities tonight. Over that same stretch, the Pelicans gave up the second most free throw attempts per game. Dort has been shooting almost eight free throws per night this month, and if he is able to increase that number here whilst keeping his field goal attempts high, he should have no issue surpassing 20 points.
Be sure to check out our full game preview for New Orleans Pelicans vs. Oklahoma City Thunder.
Isaiah Stewart over 11.5 rebounds (+110)
Mason Plumlee is once again being rested for the Detroit Pistons which means Isaiah Stewart will see the majority of the minutes at the five spot tonight. Stewart is establishing himself as a rebounding machine and over the last week he has pulled down close to 10 rebounds per game in just 24 minutes of action. With him grabbing a board every two and a half minutes over that stretch, and him normally playing 30 plus minutes as a starter, he should have a great chance of reaching 12 boards here.
Matchup-wise he will see time against the likes of Dwight Powell and Willie Cauley-Stein. Neither player is renowned for their shooting or rebounding abilities so it should allow Stewart to stay around the paint. Kristaps Porzingis could return from his injury tonight. However, I doubt the Mavericks will have one of their recovering star players play long minutes matched up against a player as physical as he is.
Be sure to check out our full game preview for Dallas Mavericks vs. Detroit Pistons.
Brook Lopez over 11.5 points (-112)
Brook Lopez is coming into this game after punishing an undersized Hornets team on his way to a 22-point night last time out. Here he will face off against another team that is not blessed with size on the interior in the Houston Rockets. Each of the last four starting centers the Rockets have come against were able to score a minimum of 12 points, with Nikola Jokic managing 24 and Karl-Anthony Towns dropping 31.
Just like those big men mentioned, Lopez can step out and hurt the Rockets from deep. The Rockets are allowing the second-most threes in the league over the last 10 games, and he could easily be a beneficiary of a couple of those tonight. With Giannis Antetokounmpo listed as day-to-day, he could have an even larger role to play here. Some may want to consider backing him to score at least 15 points for improved odds.
Be sure to check out our full game preview for Milwaukee Bucks vs. Houston Rockets.
Kyle Lowry over 7.5 assists (+205)
This line seems to be of incredible value considering that over the last week Kyle Lowry is averaging eight assists per night. The Raptors also faced off against the Nuggets just over a month ago in a game in which Lowry was able to record nine assists.
Over the last 10 games, the Denver Nuggets rank 21st in the league in opponent assists per game. They are also coming into this having given up a 12-assist night to Lonzo Ball and the Pelicans. The Nuggets’ starting point guard Facundo Campazzo, although active, lacks the size and length to impact passing lanes. And with Lowry tending to post up smaller guards, do not be surprised to see him playmaking out of the post. Draymond Green had a lot of success doing that against the Nuggets on his way to 19 assists. Lowry should be able to utilize some of that to get his own numbers up.
Be sure to check out our full game preview for Toronto Raptors vs. Denver Nuggets.