The NBA is unpredictable right now with so many players out due to the COVID protocols. Make sure to monitor the news on each of these players tonight in case they get ruled out.
Also be sure to pounce on any opportunities for players who will get a bump in usage if starters are ruled out. This is a time where we can take advantage and use the news to our benefit. Now, onto the props.
We’ll be using the Action Labs Player Prop tool to compare our NBA projections to the props posted at a variety of sportsbooks. Below, I have laid out three that I’m playing, the case for each bet and the best books to find odds for that prop.
Saturday NBA Player Props
Julius Randle, Under 24.5 Points (-118)
|Celtics vs. Knicks||Celtics -4.5|
|Time | TV||7 p.m. ET | NBA TV|
The New York Knicks have really been struggling lately as they have lost seven of their last nine games. The Celtics in my opinion should be favored by more than 4.5 points at home despite being on a back-to-back.
However, they have been struggling lately as well losing four of their last five. This game will be a grind as the total is only 210.5 points.
The Knicks have a plethora of players questionable or out tonight. Their one constant has been Julius Randle, who leads the Knicks in points, rebounds, and assists this season, but even he is struggling to get things going lately. The minutes are still high, but the production is certainly lacking.
Over Randle’s last seven games, he has just one where he scored over 24 points. That was against Golden State of all teams who has the best defense in the league. During the seven game stretch, Randle is only shooting 40% from the floor. He may see extra usage if Derrick Rose can’t play, but this slow-paced game is not one where I think a lot of points will be scored.
The Celtics rank 12th in Defensive Rating and 20th in Pace this season. They allow only 43.4 points in the paint which is the seventh best mark in the league. The Celtics allow their opponents to shoot only 44.2% from the field which is tied for the seventh best. Randle has seen each one of his shooting numbers decrease this season from last which makes for far fewer points.
On the season, Randle is only averaging 19.6 points per game. He has only scored 25 or more points in seven of his 29 games played this season. I don’t understand why this line is so high.
Randle should see more usage and he’ll always get the minutes, but I love this under. I would take this down to 23.5 points.
Jarrett Allen, Under 12.5 Rebounds (-115)
|Bucks vs. Cavaliers||Cavaliers -3|
|Time | TV||9 p.m. ET | NBA League Pass|
Editor’s note: Evan Mobley entered COVID protocols after this story was published.
It is hard to find a team that is playing better and with as much energy as the Cleveland Cavaliers. They have won five-straight games and nine of their last 11. They are 3-point road favorites tonight against the Bucks without Giannis Antetokounmpo.
The Bucks without Giannis are a completely different team. They are a worse defensive team, but the stat that has stood out the most is their pace. With Giannis off the floor the Bucks play at a pace of 93.17 compared to a pace of 99.04 with Giannis on the floor. The Cavaliers already have a slow pace and a fantastic defense. I am a little surprised this total has risen to 214.5 points.
The Cavaliers are an incredible rebounding team, especially when they start Evan Mobley alongside Jarrett Allen.
Allen continues to lead the Cavaliers in rebounding this season with 11 per game, but Mobley and even Kevin Love are not too far behind. Mobley is questionable to play tonight, but has been practicing so my lean is that he suits up for this matchup against the Bucks.
Even if Mobley doesn’t play, Allen is still only averaging 11.7 rebounds per game in the three games that Mobley has missed this season. This 12.5 prop for Allen seems rather aggressive, especially when I think Mobley suits up. Allen hasn’t had 13 or more rebounds in seven games. He has 13 or more rebounds in nine of his 27 games played. He hits this prop at a 33% rate.
Overall I do think Allen is in a good spot playing against the Bucks without Giannis in the interior, but I still think this number is way too high. Our model has Allen projected for only 11 rebounds tonight and like I mentioned I do think Mobley suits up for this game. I would take this bet down to 11.5 rebounds.
Bradley Beal, Over 23.5 Points (-105)
|Jazz vs. Wizards||Jazz -10|
|Time | TV||9 p.m. ET | NBA League Pass|
Remember when the Washington Wizards were leading the Eastern Conference with the best record? Oh have times changed!
The Wizards have lost seven of their last eight games and are 10-point road underdogs against the Jazz tonight. The Jazz have been a little uncharacteristic at home this season with a record of only 10-5 and have given up 117.3 points per game.
Despite the double-digit spread, this prop features the highest total on the slate tonight at 223 points. Bradley Beal continues to lead the Wizards in points with 22.8 per game and assists with 5.8 per game. Beal has seen his usage rate dip this season, but it is still well above 30%. If the Wizards stay in this game tonight it will be in large part due to Beal having a great game.
Beal has been heating up lately as well. Over his last six games Beal has averaged 25.8 points per game while shooting 53.3% from the field. He has double digit field goals made in four of his last six games. The minutes for Beal are also incredibly high as the Wizards try and get back into form. During that stretch Beal is averaging 37 minutes per game.
I spoke briefly about the Jazz surprising home struggles, but they are still a very strong defense with one of the best defensive big men in the game in Rudy Gobert. Beal will be forced into more mid-range shots which he has thrived in this season. He is shooting 54.1% from the field within 10-14 feet.
Beal is a streaky player so now is the time to jump on board. There are a few of his props that I liked tonight, but this points prop stood out.
Our model has Beal projected to score 26.8 points in this spot. Being big underdogs may be scary, but Beal is cooking right now and it’s time to ride the hot hand. I would consider this bet if it got to 24.5, but that is a bit steep.