Thursday NBA Player Props: Joel Embiid, Jalen Williams

Written By Josh Lander on April 6, 2023
nba player props

There are only five NBA games on the slate for Thursday night. I’m eyeing a few NBA player props from 76ers vs. Heat and Thunder vs. Jazz. Joel Embiid and the 76ers host the Miami Heat in Philadelphia at 7:30 p.m. EDT as favorites with a point total set at . In Utah, Jalen Williams and Oklahoma City take on the Jazz at 7:00 p.m. MDT. The Thunder are favorites in the game, which features a point total set at . Let’s take a look at why I think Embiid’s combo props are too high, and why I like J-Will to put up points against Utah.

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Josh Lander is 27-8 and up 20+ units betting NBA player props over the last month. 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

Heat At 76ers

Below are the available NBA player props for the game between the Heat at 76ers.

Joel Embiid Under 44.5 Points, Rebounds, and Assists (-105 DraftKings | 1u)

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

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

Fading Joel Embiid these days is not for the faint of heart. He leads the league in scoring at 33.3 points a night to go alongside 10.2 rebounds and 4.2 assists.

He probably owes the free throw line rent money based on how often he’s there. His 11.8 attempts a night are second only to Giannis Antetokounmpo.

Hear me out though.

Over the last few weeks, Embiid’s averages are up due to a few spike performances. Outside of those, he’s well below tonight’s props. Plus, he’s playing the Miami Heat, one of the few teams able to contain him.

I’m blocking out the naysayers and taking the Under on Joel Embiid’s points, rebounds, and assists combo prop on Thursday night.

Spike Performances

Embiid’s averages over his last 10 games are on par with his overall season output at 32 points, 10 boards, and 5 assists per game. Very impressive and that would certainly get him over tonight’s prop.

Yet he’s still not going over consistently, only managing to do so three in his last 10 games. Those three instances came against Boston, Golden State, and Charlotte.

Neither Golden State nor Charlotte has a legitimate NBA-level center and Philly went all out last Tuesday to beat the Celtics.

Embiid played nearly 40 minutes in that game and the 76ers don’t have much to gain by beating the Heat. I wouldn’t expect to see Embiid get nearly as much run on Thursday as he did in Boston just two nights ago.

The Embiid Whisperers

Only two teams in the league have limited Joel Embiid to fewer points per game in his career than the Heat. The Toronto Raptors with their onslaught of rangy wings, and the Memphis Grizzlies thanks to a combination of Jonas Valanciunas and Steven Adams.

Miami has used its own combination of Erik Spoelstra’s schemes and Bam Adebayo’s defensive ferocity to limit Embiid. In his last five games against the Heat in the regular season, Embiid is only averaging 21 points, 11 rebounds, and two assists.

He’s also failed to hit tonight’s prop a single time.

The Heat defense has been tops in the league at stopping the opposing team’s centers. It allows the second-fewest points and rebounds, and the fewest assists per game to the position.

With the 76ers firmly in the 3-seed and Embiid almost guaranteed to take home the MVP after his 52-point game earlier in the week, don’t expect JoJo to go all out in Miami on Thursday.

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Thunder At Jazz

Jalen Williams Over 17.5 Points (-105 DraftKings | 1u) / Over 2.5 Steals and Blocks (+150 DraftKings | 1u)

Here are Williams’ core points, rebounds and assists props for the game against the Jazz:

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

Expect another huge total in Utah on Thursday when the Thunder come to town. Their three previous matchups this season averaged 240 points per game.

Back to the J-Will well we go.

Jalen Williams been on a tear since the start of February and seems to love playing the Jazz. I’m going Over on his points prop tonight.

Jazz In Full Tank

It wasn’t long ago that I was correctly fading most forwards and centers playing against the Jazz. The books were still offering high prop totals for big men taking on Utah, banking on bettors failing to realize it immediately improved its paint defense once Walker Kessler was inserted in the starting lineup.

That was a month ago though.

Since then, Kessler and the rest of the Jazz starters have slowly been weened out of the rotation. On Thursday against Oklahoma City, Utah will be without Kessler, Lauri Markannen, Colin Sexton, Jordan Clarkson, and Rudy Gay.

The Jazz already struggle against opposing power forwards, allowing the fourth-most points to the position in its last seven games. Missing three key defenders down low in Kessler, Markannen, and Gay isn’t going to make it any easier.

J-Will’s Stocks

There’s also a strong case for Williams to torture the Jazz on the defensive side of the floor.

J-Will has been a pest all season, but especially since he was inserted into the starting lineup. He’s recorded the third-most steals in the league since February 1.

That’s bad news for a Utah team that has the fifth-most turnovers on the season while allowing the eighth-most steals. It also coughs up the fourth-most points off of turnovers, an area in which Williams excels.

Williams isn’t yet considered a shot-blocker, but I like adding the blocks to his steals tonight thanks to the juice. It’s not crazy to think Williams can get three steals tonight alone and, in his last two games vs Utah, he’s actually recorded three blocks

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