Best NBA Player Props From Lakers, Nuggets Game 2: Rui Hachimura, D’Angelo Russell

Written By Josh Lander on May 18, 2023
NBA player props

The Western Conference Finals roll along on Thursday night as the only NBA playoff game on the slate. Nikola Jokic and the Nuggets face LeBron James and the Lakers in Game 2, up 1-0 in the series. As we follow the minutes, it looks like Rui Hachimura should be in line for another heavy dose of playing time, while D’Angelo Russell will likely see his action reduced. That will have ramifications for NBA player props.

Hopefully, you saw the Game 1 videos I put out on TheLines YouTube channel this week, as well as a futures market video. We hit on 7-of-10 best bets and player props between both games, earning 3+ units. Those futures bets are also alive and well, so make sure to follow along!

Plays are listed in order of my confidence. But, make sure to also note the amount of units I’m wagering on each bet as another indicator. Find NBA odds here and use our player props search tool to find the best prices at legal sports betting sites.

  • Follow on Twitter for more NBA betting content.

Lakers At Nuggets NBA Player Props

Game Notes

LA couldn’t take advantage of Anthony Davis’ 40-burger and even failed to cover the closing +5.5 spread in Game 1. The Lakers are once again underdogs for Game 2, with a point total set at .

Rui Hachimura Over 11.5 Points (+102 FanDuel | 1u – would bet this up to 12.5)

Here are Hachimura’s core points, rebounds, and assists props for the game against the Nuggets:

  • Points: Over/Under /
  • Rebounds: Over/Under /
  • Assists: Over/Under /

Rui’s Price

By the time this article comes out, Rui’s points prop likely won’t be at 11.5 anymore. I would still be this up to 12.5 and would also consider a look at his points and rebounds combo prop. A bet on the over for his props tonight is heavily based on the idea that he’ll consistently be on the floor. I expect him to make an impact over 28-32 minutes of run, even if he doesn’t see the same 18% usage rate. We should also see some regression from the ridiculous shooting splits both teams posted, leading to more available rebounds than on Tuesday.

Backup Center

So, why might Hachimura play at least 28 minutes going forward? For starters, he’s on a heater, connecting on 8-of-11 shots, including his only attempt from deep. Further, he’s the only other Laker outside of Davis who can even come close to bothering Jokic on defense.

Head Coach Darvin Ham was loathe to verbally commit to the idea of starting Hachimura in Game 2. But, he still hasn’t ruled it out. Against the Warriors, Ham relied on Russell to match the Warriors’ speed and scoring. With Denver, it’s going to take size and defensive patience to stave off a Jokic-led attack.

Through the first three quarters of Game 1, Hachimura was 6-for-8 from the field and a +5 over just 16 minutes. By the fourth, LA’s coaching staff knew it couldn’t keep him off the floor and played him the entire quarter. It took 36 minutes of action for the Lakers to realize Hachimura was its best and only option to give Davis a breather from having to battle the two-time MVP on every defensive possession. They’re fully aware now and we should see him out there with the starting unit consistently.

Josh Lander is 71-48 and up 26+ units betting NBA player props over the last 3 months. Check out the NBA Coast 2 Coast podcast each and every weekday with co-host Nate Weitzer and give him a follow on Twitter, @jlboogy. Click on the odds below to bet now.

Editor’s Note

D’Angelo Russell Under 20.5 Points, Rebounds, and Assists Combo (-115 PointsBet | 1u)

Here are Russell’s core points, rebounds, and assists props for the game against the Nuggets:

  • Points: Over/Under /
  • Rebounds: Over/Under /
  • Assists: Over/Under /
  • Points, Rebounds, and Assists Combo: /

More Like ‘Angelo Russell

Nuggets G/F Bruce Brown was happy to share the team’s game plan to pick on Russell ahead of Game 1. Everyone who watched the game or even saw the box score already knew, though. In 26 minutes of action, Russell posted a 168.5 individual defensive rating, giving him a game-worst -48 net rating. In simpler terms, LA was -25 when he was on the floor. He hit a few two-pointers in the third quarter to keep himself in the game, but failed to see any action in the fourth.

Russell has played the second-most minutes of any Laker in the first quarter during the playoffs, averaging 9.5. Meaning there’s always the chance he comes out and hits a few 3s in the early going of Game 2. Still, Ham and his staff are looking at the same defensive stats we are and you can believe they won’t keep Russell out there if LA goes down big in the first half again. I like adding the rebounds and assists to this under bet as I don’t think he’ll have time to impact the game outside of potentially hitting a few shots early.

Best Sportsbook Promos For NBA Player Props

UP TO $1,250 BONUS
New User Bonus. T&Cs Apply.
DraftKings Promo: Bet $5 Get $200
PLUS $50 Bonus Bet On Deposit
PLUS Up to $1,000 Deposit Bonus
Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER
To Claim: Click Bet Now
UP TO $1,250
On Caesars
Stream NFL Games In App For Free
+ Get 1,000 Caesars Reward & $1,000 Tier Credits
Redeem for Bet Credits, Hotel Stays, & More!
Use Promo Code: LEGALFULL
No Sweat First Bet
Up to $2,500 No Sweat First Bet
Available on iOS, Android & Desktop
To Claim: Click Bet Now
Bet $1
GET $200
In Bonus Bets
Bet $1, Get $200 Win or Lose
Sign Up, Deposit and Play Today in VA!
Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-Gambler 21+ 
To Claim: Click Bet Now
Josh Lander Avatar
Written by
Josh Lander

View all posts by Josh Lander