The journey towards the NBA Finals continues with two more national TV games tonight on ESPN, Mavericks at Knicks, and Nets at Bulls. Each week throughout the season, TheLines will look at some matchups for the televised slates and try to figure if there are any ESPN NBA player props worth a look.
You can also search ESPN NBA player props using our tool below or find the best odds for each prop market in the player tiles below. If prop markets are not open yet for those players, the player tiles will show futures markets. Check back later if this is the case.
ESPN NBA player props tool: Find the best odds
Dallas Mavericks At New York Knicks
The Mavericks come into this game hot, having put together six straight wins, including two against presumptive title contenders in Golden State and Chicago. The run has mostly come without Kristaps Porzingis, who may remain out for this game in the COVID protocols. Luka Doncic has also missed a recent game with an ankle injury so keep an eye on that. The Mavs’ lineup could be in flux in a big way.
In any case, when looking at the way these two teams match up, what stands out is the fact that these are the two slowest teams in the entire league. Two slow teams matching up can have a compounding effect. Watch for a chance to bet unders pretty much across the board here, assuming prop lines get set close to player averages.
The game total under could be a good look too. It should be one of the lowest we’ve seen lately, but will it be low enough?
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Luka Doncic Props
Doncic figures to fire even higher than his usual volume of shots if Porzingis sits. However, given the opponent, we can potentially take advantage of his points total is set too high. A rebounding under might be dicier as he vacuumed up 14 boards with the dearth of big men in his last outing.
One thing to note: the Knicks have been one of the worst teams in the league at defending the 3-point line, so Doncic and other Mavs may have wiggle room to inch over their 3-point props.
RJ Barrett Props
For the Knicks, we highlighted the increased usage of RJ Barrett in this space before their game last Thursday. Since that game, he has once again led the team with 21 shots and 20 shots.
Barrett is no doubt the player whose markets merit most interest on the Knicks. If he continues chucking away at this rate, he has a chance to go over a lower number if that’s what the market posts. But if the number reflects his recent barrage and not a slow, defensive-minded opponent, then under is the play.
Brooklyn Nets At Chicago Bulls
In some ways, these teams are mirror images of one another, living in the mid-range on offense and still putting up solid efficiency in spite of it.
The big news in this game obviously comes from the recent return of Kyrie Irving from anti-vax induced absence. He may or may not make for three superstars on the Nets side in this one. James Harden is currently listed as day-to-day and could potentially sit.
Harden’s status obviously has a material effect on the usage rates of Irving and Kevin Durant. Should he sit, we can probably expect them to shoulder higher workloads in the offense.
That’s particularly true with LaMarcus Aldridge already announced out. Stars aside, he’s been their most willing chucker.
The Bulls also might be missing top perimeter defensive pest Alex Caruso if he remains in the protocols. That could help Irving and Harden in particular.
The Bulls are also notably poor defending the rim. They allow the highest volume of shots in the league there, per Cleaning The Glass. That favors Harden greatly if he plays since he gets to the rim far more than the other two stars.
Kyrie Irving, James Harden and Kevin Durant Player Props
The Nets’ switch-heavy defensive scheme makes for a friendly matchup in theory for the Bulls. Their high-volume perimeter players in particular excel at hunting good matchups and exploiting.
Zach LaVine And DeMar Derozan Props
Here are some notable efficiency rankings for Zach LaVine and DeMar Derozan:
- LaVine isolations: 79th percentile
- Derozan isolations: 85th percentile
- Derozan post-ups: 83rd percentile
Look for these two to dominate overmatched defenders.