NBA Finals Player Prop Bets & Picks: Back KCP Points in Game 5 (Friday, Oct. 9)
Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: LeBron James #23 and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope #1 of the Los Angeles Lakers.
- The Los Angeles Lakers are looking to wrap up the NBA title in Friday's Game 5 against the Miami Heat. Which players will come up big for these teams?
- Brandon Anderson shares his favorite player props for Game 5 below.
Betting on props can be one of the easiest ways to build your bankroll, especially in the NBA postseason. Sportsbooks tend to offer lower limits and take less action on props than they do on games, so they don’t have as much incentive to post an accurate line.
That’s where our Player Prop tool comes in handy. We compare our industry-leading NBA projections to the props posted at a variety of sportsbooks to identify the best plays each day. Each bet is then graded on a scale from 1-10, with 10 being the best possible grade.
|Bet Quality Grade||Win-Loss (Win Pct)|
|Bet Quality of 10||775-572 (57%)|
|Bet Quality of 9||942-776 (54%)|
|Bet Quality of 8||1432-1263 (52%)|
Friday’s player props come from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:
- Miami Heat vs. Los Angeles Lakers at 9 p.m. ET
NBA Player Prop Bets
Miami Heat, Jimmy Butler
The Props: Over 7.5 rebounds -110, Record a triple-double +700
Butler has really cranked up his rebounding over the past couple weeks, and the market still hasn’t properly adjusted for it. Starting with Game 3 of the conference finals against the Celtics, check out Butler’s game-by-game rebounding numbers: 8, 9, 8, 2, 2, 8, 11, 10.
Those twos came in the series clincher against Boston and the Game 1 blowout loss in the Finals, both of which also coincided with minutes dips for Butler. He is averaging 7.25 rebounds per game over that stretch, but this is a case where the average doesn’t show the real success rate.
Butler has taken on a much huger role against the Lakers with Bam Adebayo and Goran Dragic injured. Adebayo returned for Game 4, but Butler was barely affected. He still hit double-digit rebounds and had a ton of the ball in creation. Look at Butler’s line this last three games:
- Game 2: 25 points, 8 rebounds, 13 assists
- Game 3: 40 points, 11 rebounds, 13 assists
- Game 4: 22 points, 10 rebounds, 9 assists
Butler is two rebounds in one game and one assist in another from three straight triple-doubles. Assuming Game 5 is not a blowout, Butler should threaten for another one. We’re projecting him at 8.8 rebounds, making the rebounding prop a nice play and getting us close there. Butler’s assists dropped slightly with Adebayo’s return, but he was still closer.
At +700, Butler has an implied 12.5% chance of a triple-double. Based on these last three games and the high-usage role he’s playing, this remains a good play. Don’t bother with the Finals MVP though. The Heat would have to come back and win the series for that to happen.
Check out our new NBA PRO Report, where we highlight factors that provide betting edges — like large wagers, historically profitable betting systems, model projections and expert picks — that when combined with sharp money can powerfully detail the smartest bets on a given slate.
LA Lakers, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
The Prop: Over 10.5 points (-110)
Rajon Rondo and Kyle Kuzma get more attention as the Lakers’ key “third guy,” but Kentavious Caldwell-Pope has been more of a bellwether for the team’s success this postseason.
In four Lakers losses, Caldwell-Pope has scored just 5.8 PPG with 1.0 3-pointer a game, hitting double-digit points only once. But in 15 Lakers playoff wins, he’s at 11.3 PPG with 2.5 3-pointers a game, hitting double-digit points in 10 of those games. That is a huge stark contrast, and you better believe LeBron is aware of it. KCP gets a huge majority of his points on threes and in transition, which is when LeBron gets him open looks. When Caldwell-Pope hits open shots, the Lakers win.
It looks like the Lakers should wrap up the title in Game 5. If you agree with that premise, you should bank on Caldwell-Pope getting his points again, as per usual when Los Angeles wins. The books finally bumped this line up from 9.5 but didn’t go far enough. If you followed this column and bet that over in Game 3, you were paid off before the end of the first quarter. I’m still smashing this one at 10.5 up to -140.
LA Lakers, Rajon Rondo
The Prop: Under 6.5 assists (-132)
After dominating the Nuggets and Rockets, Playoff Rondo has looked more like regular Rajon Rondo against the Heat. Rondo is averaging 7.3 points, 5.5 rebounds, and 6.0 assists per game through the first four games of the Finals, perfectly fine numbers but a far cry from the third star he was playing like in previous rounds against Houston and Denver.
Rondo was routinely putting up eight to 10 assists in earlier playoff rounds but has five or fewer in four of his last five games: 4, 4, 10, 5 and 5. That’s an easier under in four of the five most recent games. Rondo was picking up easier assists on steals and fast breaks in earlier rounds and benefiting from a different style of defense. With the Heat playing things more straight up, Rondo simply isn’t on the ball as much and doesn’t have as many playmaking opportunities.
This line feels a full assist too high, and we’re projecting him at 5.5 assists. I’ll play to -150.