NBA Player Prop Bets, Picks: 3 Saturday Plays, Including James Harden, Tyler Herro & Kevin Porter Jr.
Ron Jenkins/Getty Images. Pictured: Tyler Herro
I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and isn’t too full, because we have to feast on some props tonight.
We’ll be using the Action Labs Player Prop tool to compare our NBA statistical projections to the props posted at a variety of sportsbooks. Below, I have laid out three prop bets that I’m playing, the case for each bet and the best books to find odds on those player props.
Saturday NBA Player Props
James Harden, Over 8.5 Assists (+100)
|Nets vs. Suns||Nets -2.5|
|Time | TV||7:30 p.m. ET | NBA TV|
Let’s get some action in on the game of the night between the 14-5 Brooklyn Nets and the 16-3 Phoenix Suns.
The Suns have won 15 straight games, while the Nets have won 12 of their last 14. The only team with a better record than either is the Golden State Warriors.
The Nets rank eight in Pace this season, while the Suns rank fourth. This game has a high total of 224, so there is going to be a lot of opportunity for James Harden to get this over 8.5 assists prop. The market makes the Nets a short favorite.
It has been a very weird start for James Harden who is 19 games into his 14th season. He has scored “only” 20.7 points per game and is only attempting 14.1 field goals per game. Both totals are the lowest they have been since his last season with the Oklahoma City Thunder coming off of the bench in the 2011-12 season. With Kyrie Irving still not with the team, you would think he would take on more of the scoring role, but Harden has deferred to his teammates.
I totally understand deferring to one of the greatest scorers in the history of the league in Kevin Durant, but I am shocked at how low those totals are especially the field goal attempts. Harden has attempted 13 or fewer field goals in five of his last six games and is being more of a distributor.
The 8.5 total is certainly a hefty number to achieve, but Harden is averaging 9.2 per game this season. He has hit the over 8.5 assists mark in five of his last eight games.
The Suns have been awesome defensively this season. They rank third overall in Defensive Rating as they have given up 104.9 points per game. They also have given up only 21.9 assists per game, which is ninth-best.
However, due to how Harden is playing this season and with how close and up-tempo this game should be, I’m taking over 8.5 assists. This prop is offered on DraftKings and BetMGM at even-money. I would bet this up to 9.5.
Tyler Herro, Over 17.5 Points (-120)
|Bulls vs. Heat||Heat -1.5|
|Time | TV||8 p.m. ET | NBA League Pass|
From one awesome game to the next. This matchup between the Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat is going to be fantastic. This is the last leg of the Heat’s four-game road trip as they have started just 1-2 with losses to the Minnesota Timberwolves and Washington Wizards. They’ll be looking to bounce back against the Bulls, who have the same amount of losses, but one more victory.
This matchup against the Bulls is pretty difficult. They rank fourth in Defensive Rating and have given up only 103.8 points per game. I am a little surprised the Heat are favored in this tightly projected contest. The United Center will be loud for the return of Jimmy Butler, but it is Tyler Herro who I have my eyes on.
This is a prop that I am sure will be out in other places with potentially better value, but at this time of the article FanDuel is the only book that if offering Tyler Herro props right now. This seems low, and I would even take this over up to 19.5 tonight. Herro has been awesome off the bench as the Heat’s second leading scorer behind Butler averaging a career-high 21.8 points per game.
In six of his last eight games, Herro has scored 20 or more points. He has failed to score under 18 just once during that stretch. Also over that time, Herro has attempted 18 or more field goals in every game but one. The Heat trust him with the ball in his hands running the second unit and he closes out the end of the first half and the game on most occasions.
The best thing about taking a Herro points prop, is you know he is going to be gunning from the moment he steps onto the court. Despite coming off of the bench, Herro is third behind Butler and Kyle Lowry for minutes played on the team, averaging 33.6 per game. The Heat are only implied for 106.75 points in this low-scoring contest, but this prop is simply too low for Herro.
Kevin Porter Jr., Over 25.5 Points, Assists, and Rebounds (-110)
|Rockets vs. Hornets||Hornets -6|
|Time | TV||8 p.m. ET | NBA League Pass|
After shocking the league and beating the Chicago Bulls two nights ago for their second win all season, the Houston Rockets welcome in the Charlotte Hornets, who have won eight of their last nine games. The 6-point spread is a little surprising, but I like that Vegas thinks it stays close.
The Rockets will be without No. 2 overall pick Jalen Green, who has a hamstring injury which will sideline him for at least one week. Looking at our On/Off tool on FantasyLabs, you will notice the biggest bump for the Rockets goes to Kevin Porter Jr. with Green off of the floor. That is where we are focusing our attention on tonight. The over Porter Jr. on all three major stats.
In their victory over the Bulls without Green, Porter Jr. had 14 points, six rebounds, and nine assists while playing 37 minutes. His shot wasn’t even falling as he only made 38.5% of his field goal attempts. Porter Jr. will have as much usage as he can handle tonight for the Rockets. Despite shooting a career-low 36.4% this season, he will have to stay aggressive in this spot.
The matchup for Porter Jr. should be very beneficial to getting this over prop. The Charlotte Hornets rank second in Pace this season, while they rank 21st in Defensive Rating. They have given up 112.5 points per game which is the third highest mark in the league. This game total of 224 points is tied for the highest on the slate. If the Rockets keep this game close, Porter Jr. will be the reason.
I would take this prop up to 26.5 on DraftKings, but no further as I feel the value gets away from us at that point. I love involving every stat with Porter Jr. due to how poorly he has been shooting the ball this season.
However, if he catches fire he is going to easily get the over on this prop and I love having that out with a volume shooter. He will have plenty of opportunities in this game in all categories.