JutPicks' best NBA player props for Thursday: Smart takes us to the bank

Marcus Smart of the Boston Celtics

Pickswise was nice enough to give me the opportunity to write my plays up for you all. For those of you who don’t know me, they refer to me as JutPicks on Twitter. I post all my plays with brief writeups every day. Now I get to write even more with no character limit!

I pride myself in being as transparent as they come. My NBA record from last season and this season are listed in my bio alongside with my MLB record. Without further ado, let’s dive into my favorite play for Thursday.

Nikola Jokic (Nuggets) over 27.5 points (-122)

Line available at Fanduel Sportsbook at time of publishing

Last season’s MVP is having another fantastic year. Jokic is averaging 26 points on the year and shooting a career high 57% from the field.

Tonight the Nuggets face off against the new-look Sacramento Kings who will have Domantas Sabonis guarding Jokic. Last time these two matched up, Jokic scored 32 points on 11 for 25 from the field. We targeted Nikola Vucevic against the Kings last week, but he only scored 21 points on 8 for 18 from the field. Sacramento is allowing the 8th most points to the center position and the Nuggets are -4 favorites. With a total of 234, Jokic should see his fair share of offensive work in this one.

I expect Jokic to come out hot in the 2nd half of the season and show why he deserves to be the back-to-back MVP.

Check out our full game preview for Nuggets vs Kings

Desmond Bane (Grizzlies) over 19.5 points (-104)

Line available at Fanduel Sportsbook at time of publishing

Desmond Bane is regarded as one of the best shooters in the league. Bane has scored the 10th most 3-pointers this season and shoots over 41% from deep which is 3rd highest in the association.

Tonight he faces a familiar foe in the Minnesota Timberwolves. In three matchups this season, Bane has scored over 20 points in his last two which included only playing 25 minutes in a blowout loss in November. Minnesota has allowed close to 14 made three-pointers in their last 15 games which is 4th most in the league. I expect Bane to come out firing from deep after his poor performance in the 3-point shootout over All-Star weekend.

Bane is over this line in 16 of 27 games on the road and I expect him to continue his road dominance tonight in a fast-paced game with a total of 240.

Check out our full game preview for Grizzlies vs Timberwolves 

Marcus Smart (BOS) over 16.5 points + assists (-110)

Line available at DraftKings at time of publishing

It feels great to have the NBA back in action. The first player I am targeting is a familiar one: Marcus Smart. We cashed on Smart on Super Bowl Sunday with his aggressive performance against the Atlanta Hawks. We should see a similar game from the tenacious defender against the new-look Brooklyn Nets, who are starting a backcourt of Patty Mills and Seth Curry.

Smart is coming off a game in which he exited early due to an ankle injury. Luckily, for us, he is not on the injury report and will be a full go tonight.

In his last 15 games that he has seen at least 25 minutes of court time, he has cashed this prop in 13 of them. Brooklyn is a +9 underdog but I expect the home team to keep this game close, necessitating plenty of minutes for Smart.

Dating back to last season, Smart is over this line in his last 9 games versus the Nets — including 28 and 25 points + assists in the two matchups this season. I expect the Oklahoma State alum to continue to be aggressive against a weak backcourt.

Check out our full game preview for Nets vs Celtics

Pickswise is the home of free NBA picks and predictions. Make sure to also check out our NBA parlays and NBA prop bets tabs for more expert picks. 

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