Best NBA Player Props Bets for January 7
Only a handful of games in the National Basketball Association on Thursday night, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have a few great player props picks. Before we get there, make sure you have your fantasy lineups set and go choose a team for tonight at FanDuel’s DFS. While we’re confident in our picks, take a look to see if any other players jump out at you by using the SportsGrid Player Prop Tool. Ensure you always check back throughout the day, as odds and projections may change with news and starting rotations.
Odds come your way from our friends over at the FanDuel Sportsbook.
Brooklyn Nets Kyrie Irving vs. Philadelphia 76ers
The Bet: Over 28.5 Points (-118)
Last night we went with a member of the 76ers for one of our props picks as Joel Embiid scored a season-high 38 points, going way over the 27.5 points needed as recommended. Today we choose a player going up against the Sixers, more than capable of hanging 30 on them.
Kyrie Irving is sixth in the league putting up 27.1 points per game while second on the Nets, trailing teammate Kevin Durant and his 28.2 points a night. As you probably already know, Durant’s average will stay frozen for a little while since the former Warrior has landed on the league’s COVID-protocols list. Durant should be out until next week, opening the door for Irving to go Yahtzee on the offensive end. KD’s missing 28 points a game have to go somewhere, and it’s a near certainty many of those shots will now go to Kyrie.
In his first game without his partner in crime, the former Cavalier put up a team-high 29 in a 34-point rout of the Jazz. This coming just two days after Irving laid 30 on the Wizards with Durant still in the lineup. The difference being Kyrie played only 29 minutes in the Utah blowout compared to 39 against Washington. He basically put up the same amount of shots in both games but had 10 minutes to spare against the Jazz. All signs point to volume shooting to come from Kyrie with KD out.
Irving projects to score 29, but he could easily eclipse 30 as this game should go blow-for-blow between two of the best teams in the East. In his last full year, the former Celtic averaged almost 28 per game against Philly, including putting games of 36 and 40 on the Sixers in the 2018-19 season.
Philadelphia is a -2 point favorite at FanDuel’s Sportsbook, with the Moneyline close on both sides. At the same time, a healthy total of 226 suggests a high-scoring affair, which bodes well for Irving’s recommendation.
Portland Trail Blazers, Damian Lillard vs. Minnesota Timberwolves
The Bet: Under 28.5 Points (-110)
The Trail Blazers have absolutely dominated the Minnesota Timberwolves of late, especially in Portland. Minnesota hasn’t won in Portland since 2016, a stretch of seven games, and have only won twice in their past 28 visits to Oregan. The Blazers have a ridiculous .702 winning percentage all-time against the T’Wolves. Despite their dominance is hasn’t been the case for all players.
Damian Lillard has not been as dynamic against the Wolves as he has against the rest of the league. The Blazers guard carries a 23.5 point per game career average against Minnesota, and while that number is very good, it isn’t exactly 29 points. After keeping with his career numbers last year, Lillard was contained for 19 points per game against Minnesota in the 2018-19 season.
The Blazers are deservedly big favorites against this Minnesota team they’ve dominated so greatly in Portland, which puts the blowout very much in play. A double-digit spread in favor of the Blazers suggests a sizeable winning margin should be the case. The T’Wolves are one of the worst defensive teams in the league and are, of course, without superstar Karl-Anthony Towns out with a fractured wrist.
This matchup couldn’t have come at a better time for Portland trying to shake out of a two-game losing slide. Yes, Lillard will get his, but many signs point to a big lead allowing the Blazers to empty their bench and give their superstar a break to save some of his minutes.
Lillard is projected to score about 26 points, but if the high-scoring Blazers dump a ton of points on defensively challenged Minnesota early, he may not even have the time to put that up.
Portland is a 10-point home favorite, carry an untouchable -480 rate on the Moneyline, while the total is a chunky 233 points at FanDuel’s Sportsbook, suggesting a lot of scoring, most of which should come, hopefully early and often, by the Trail Blazers.