We were so close to a perfect 3-for-3 last night.
Jimmy Butler soared past his prop, and Kawhi Leonard did just enough to pass his. But Julius Randle and the Knicks just didn’t show up in a blowout loss last night, leaving Randle with fewer minutes than usual. As a result, he fell under 11.5 rebounds.
So, it’s reassuring that the process was still sound. We can’t predict blowouts on a nightly basis, so let’s not dwell on it. On to the next one.
Michael Porter Jr.
8.5 REBS @ Memphis — OVER (110 PTS)
Michael Porter Jr. has suddenly become a modestly productive rebounder, securing double-digit boards in five of the last six games. Prior to this stretch, his only other double-digit rebounding games were Dec. 29 and Jan. 23 — that’s it.
I’ll ride the wave before it crashes. Memphis and Denver are tied for ninth in the NBA in rebounding rate (51.5 percent), so this is a decent matchup in total. But injuries in the frontcourt, specifically to Paul Millsap and JaMychal Green, have opened the door for Porter to take on an expanded role down low.
Both are considered questionable for Friday, so there’s a bit of a wait-and-see approach needed here, but if the current situation remains the same, I’m jamming Porter into the lineup and not thinking twice about it.
0.5 BLKS vs. Denver — OVER (110 PTS)
If you read my columns here, you know how I generally feel about playing block and/or steal props. There’s skill involved, sure, but there’s also a fair bit of variance, so I try to avoid them altogether.
But when someone like Jonas Valanciunas only needs one, I’m intrigued. The Memphis big man had four blocks in his last contest — perhaps an indicator of that variance, because he had just four blocks in the previous 14 games combined — but I’ll ride the high while it’s here.
Especially with Denver potentially missing some of its bulk down low, Valanciunas should have the physical advantage in this matchup more so than he normally would.
I’ll take the chance and play the Over.
30.5 PTS + ASTS vs. Philadelphia — OVER (100 PTS)
This is an easy play, and that’s validated by the point split being at 100 for the Over and 100 for the Under.
Westbrook has double-digit assists in six of the last seven games, and we all know he’s a weapon to either score or create a bucket with the ball in his hands. He’s a near lock for at least 20 points a night, and the more he scores, the fewer assists he’ll need to reach this prop.
But like I said, he’s a weapon to score or pass on every possession, which is why I’m taking these free 100 points.
Play the Over.
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