Best NBA Player Prop Bets For In-Season Tournament Monday: Can Zion Williamson Score 25 Points?
NBA In-Season Tournament odds are now available across the best betting sites for the elimination round. Monday’s two quarterfinal matchups feature the Celtics at the Pacers and Pelicans at the Kings. With Kristaps Porzingis already declared out, I’m eyeing two NBA player prop bets from Boston at Indiana game and one from New Orleans at Sacramento. Make sure you know the NBA In-Season Tournament rules before betting.
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NBA Bet: al horford over points AND Rebounds (1 unit)
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“Papa” Al Horford has stepped up his game tremendously during Porzingis’s recent absence. Boston seemed content to keep their ageless center on ice during the regular season, outside of big games against teams like the Philadelphia 76ers. Prior to the last three games, all without Porizingis, Horford was averaging 5.7 PPG and 4.7 RPG in just 25 minutes a night. Over the last three, he’s upped those numbers to 14 PPG/9.5 RPG in 31 minutes. He’s also gone over 18 points and rebounds combined in all four.
Horford has solidified himself as the team’s leading rebounder, averaging 16.3 rebound chances without KP this season. The Celtics accumulate the most rebound chances per game, in part because their defense is so stingy in both the halfcourt and in transition. Indiana continues to play at the fastest pace in the league, affording its opponents the fourth-most rebound chances.
On top of it all, the Pacers are allowing the most points per game to opposing centers. Myles Turner is a proficient shot blocker when he’s helping off of his man, not as a one-on-one defender. He’ll be on Horford for the majority of their time on the court together, which is good news for Horford. He should find himself constantly open as Turner helps his teammates deal with Boston’s slashing wings and guards.
NBA Bet: derrick white over Points + Assists (1u)
Derrick White has also majorly increased his output when Kristaps has sat out this year. With KP on the floor, Boston’s offense runs through him and Jayson Tatum in the halfcourt. When he’s not in the lineup, White assumes the role of a traditional point guard. This puts the ball in his hands more often, allowing him to both score and facilitate.
In four games without his starting center, the Celtics’ PG has gone comfortably over 19 points and assists. He’s averaging 19.5 points alone, compared to the 12.7 PPG when KP plays. He notches nearly three more assists per game, raising them from 4.5 to seven per game. That’s directly correlated to his increase in potential assists, which has climbed to 11 per game over his last three affairs.
Indy’s pace has been widely discussed since last season, but its lack of defense should probably get a bit more notice. The Pacers allow the most points per game and have the second-worst defensive rating. They also put their opponents at the free throw line throughout the game, allowing the most attempts in the league at 28.5. That’s good news for White, who averages four more FTA without Kristaps.
Celtics vs. Pacers Player Props
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NBA bet: zion Williamson over points
Zion Williamson has been quietly racking up impressive stats while playing in 17 of 21 possible games for the Pelicans. He’s eclipsed this points prop line in seven of his last eight games, averaging 26 per night. The one time he failed to reach 25 points, he only saw 26 minutes against San Antonio when New Orleans didn’t really need his services to win. That won’t be the case against a Kings team that looks hungry to etch its name in the first IST trophy.
Sacramento may be hungry, but Zion will likely feast tonight. Over his last three meetings with the Kings, Williamson has averaged 27 PPG in 34 minutes. He’s a brutal matchup for Harrison Barnes and the rest of the Kings frontcourt. Mostly, though, he’s a brutal matchup for a team without a true rim protector.
Domantas Sabonis is an incredible rebounder and, were it not for Nikola Jokic, the best passing big man since his father Arvydas. He is not, however, an imposing defender inside of five feet. Sac allows the fourth-highest field goal percentage around the rim and the tenth-most points in the paint. That will continue to spell trouble against Zion, who attempts the most shots per game inside of five feet. He’s also incredibly efficient, posting the fifth-best shooting percentage.
Pelicans vs. Kings Player Props
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