Friday’s Best NBA Player Props: Trust D’Angelo Russell as a Playmaker
Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Golden State Warriors guard D’Angelo Russell (0).
- Friday's five-game NBA slate features four player prop bets offering value.
- This piece will focus on Bucks SG Khris Middleton, Heat SF Duncan Robinson and Warriors G D'Angelo Russell.
Betting on props can be one of the easiest ways to build your bankroll. 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.
Odds as of Thursday afternoon. Check out PointsBet, where Action Network users can access an exclusive promotion to get a 200% deposit match (deposit $50, bet with $150).
How about a little reminder on just how impressively these bets did last season? Props with a Bet Quality of 10 posted a win rate of 60.31%, and props with a Bet Quality of nine won at a 58.82% clip.
As is the case with most sports, betting on unders proved to be more profitable than betting on overs last season:
- Unders with a Bet Quality of 10: 341-172 (66.47%)
- Unders with a Bet Quality of 9: 457-273 (62.6%)
- Unders with a Bet Quality of 8: 898-589 (60.39%)
- Unders with a Bet Quality of 7: 1447-1086 (57.13%)
- Unders with a Bet Quality of 6: 1992-1663 (54.95%)
Overall, if you just blind bet every under with a Bet Quality of eight or higher, you would’ve won at a 62.1% clip on more than 2,700 bets.
Tonight’s props come from three of the slate’s five games:
- Milwaukee Bucks at Atlanta Hawks: 7:30 p.m. ET
- Indiana Pacers at Miami Heat: 8 p.m. ET
- Golden State Warriors at Phoenix Suns: 10:30 p.m. ET on NBATV
Let’s dive in.
Bucks SG Khris Middleton
THE PICKS: Over 24.5 points (+116) & Over 5.5 assists (-110)
The Bucks are expected be without Giannis Antetokounmpo today, who is listed as doubtful with a back injury. Eric Bledsoe remains out, which means that Middleton will be asked to carry a massive workload vs. the Hawks.
Most of his props have been priced up pretty aggressively, but there is still value in targeting both his scoring and assist prop given the current injury situation. Middleton has seen a team-high boost to his usage and assist rate with both Giannis and Bledsoe off the court this season, and the he leads the team in both categories. Overall, he’s averaged 31.7 points and 7.4 assists per 36 minutes with both players off the court.
Middleton is also in an excellent spot vs. the Hawks. The Bucks are still implied for 121.25 points despite playing on the road, and the Hawks rank just 28th in defensive efficiency.
I’m all in on Middleton today given the matchup and Milwaukee’s current injury situation. I like the over up to -115 and the assist prop up to -125.
Heat SF Duncan Robinson
THE PICK: Under 9.5 points (-110)
Robinson has had a nice run with the Heat, but it appears his role is dwindling as the team gets healthier. He’s played 23.3 minutes or fewer in three of his past four games, including just 20.3 minutes in his last contest. Robinson is far from a high-usage player — he ranks 11th on the team in usage rate — so any reduction in volume is going to hurt his scoring numbers.
Robinson also has a brutal matchup today vs. the Indiana Pacers. They rank sixth in defensive efficiency and 22nd in pace, which should result in fewer scoring opportunities than usual.
Robinson is an efficient shooter, but he just isn’t seeing enough volume at the moment. I like the under up to -125 given the matchup.
Warriors G D’Angelo Russell
THE PICK: Over 5.5 assists (-143)
Russell has handed out just four assists in each of his past two games, which makes this a nice opportunity to buy low on him. He had at least six dimes in five of his prior six contests, and he’s averaging 6.1 assists per game this season.
Additionally, Russell is currently projected for 32.1 minutes in the FantasyLabs NBA Models, and he’s posted at least six assists in 10 of 12 games where he’s played at least 31 minutes.
His matchup vs. the Suns should also be a positive. The Suns are mediocre defensively, ranking just 19th in defensive efficiency, and the Warriors don’t carry nearly the same blowout risk as usual. They’re only 3.5-point underdogs on the road, so there’s a good chance that Russell sees a full workload in this contest.
This line is simply too low given what we’ve seen from Russell in competitive games this season. I think the over holds value up to -175.