Saturday’s 3 Best NBA Player Props: Bet on Valanciunas for Shorthanded Grizz?

Saturday’s 3 Best NBA Player Props: Bet on Valanciunas for Shorthanded Grizz? article feature image
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Pictured: Memphis Grizzlies C Jonas Valanciunas (17), Photo Credit: Jerome Miron-USA Today Sports

  • Saturday's four-game NBA slate features three player prop bets offering value
  • This piece will focus on Grizzlies C Jonas Valanciunas, Warriors G D'Angelo Russell, and Thunder F Danilo Gallinari

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 the best lines.

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 Saturday 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 two of the slate’s four games:

  • Dallas Mavericks at Memphis Grizzlies: 8 p.m. ET
  • Golden State Warriors at Oklahoma City Thunder: 8 p.m. ET

Let’s dive in.

Grizzlies C Jonas Valanciunas

THE PICK: Over 13.5 points (-143)

The Grizzlies are going to be an excellent source of value today in DFS and the prop market. Ja Morant and Brandon Clarke will both get the night off, which should result in increased minutes and usage opportunities for Valanciunas. He’s averaged a usage rate of 27.2% with Clarke and Morant off the court this season, which is a solid increase from his season average of 23.8%.

Valanciunas has a solid matchup today vs. the the Dallas Mavericks, who rank merely 18th in defensive efficiency. They will also be without Kristaps Porzingis, who is one of their better interior defenders.

Valanciunas is capable of filling up the box score in a hurry, so I like his chances in this situation. I’d play the over on 13.5 points up to -175.

Warriors G D’Angelo Russell

THE PICK: Over 8.0 assists (+120)

Russell is coming off a monster performance in his last game, scoring 52 points in an overtime loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves. He’s posted a usage rate of at least 41.0% in each of his past two contests, and he’s going to have to carry a massive workload to try a keep the shorthanded Warriors afloat.

That said, his scoring prop has been priced up pretty drastically today, so I’m going to look to back him as a distributor. He has seen a large increase in that department as well, although it isn’t necessarily reflected in the box score. He has yet to hand out more than eight assists in a single game, but he is among the leaders in potential assists per NBA.com.

He’s averaged 15.5 assists opportunities over his past two games, including 17 in his last contest. He’s a strong candidate for some positive regression in that department if his teammates can stop throwing up bricks.

Betting on Russell’s teammates to make shots is a scary proposition — he has one of the worst supporting casts in recent NBA memory — but I’m willing to roll the dice at +120. This bet stops looking like a value around even money.

Thunder F Danilo Gallinari

THE PICK: Under 19.5 points (+106)

Gallinari has one of the best matchups possible today vs. the Warriors, but this line still seems high. He’s been below 19.5 points in five of his first seven contests, and he’s scored just 21 points both times he’s gone over. He’s not playing a ton of minutes for the Thunder, who have played a deep rotation to begin the season. Only Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is averaging more than 29.6 minutes per game, and 11 players on the team are averaging at least 10.3 minutes.

The Thunder obviously have the potential to put up a lot of points in this matchup, but that doesn’t necessarily mean those points will come from Gallinari. I like the under up to -110.

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