LeBron James is the lead story as we break down the best props for Lakers Suns and ask — can you lean on LeBron when it comes to pumping out the insane production we’re used to seeing?
We know the Lakers will try, but looking at his prop lines for Game 6, it’s clear that expectations are high — maybe a little too high. Let’s dive in and explain why we feel forced to fade the GOAT tonight.
Best Props for Lakers Suns (6/3)
LeBron James Under 48.5 PRA (-113 @ DraftKings)
Would play to U47.5 which is more widely avaialble
This is an “everything is fine” line, the kind of line we were getting in last year’s playoffs when everyone was healthy, the Lakers were world-beaters, and life was good.
Things are far from fine now, though. LeBron is a little more than two weeks removed from returning from a high ankle sprain, a significant injury that is notoriously slow to heal.
Then there are the Suns, who’ve been playing dynamite defense all year and have done an excellent job limiting LeBron.
With or without Anthony Davis in the lineup, LeBron’s numbers aren’t up to his lofty playoff standards.
- 37.2 PRA per game, down from 47.1 in last year’s playoffs.
- Even when healthy this year, this is not a normal line for him — LeBron’s rang up the 50-burger that he’ll need tonight just five times all season (10%)
In fact, digging through our prop database, this number is wildly above his expectation this year, even when healthy.
Only once did LeBron have a PRA line set as high as it is today. His average PRA line has been 44.1 with a result of 42.8.
So he has been slightly exceeding expectations more often than not this year, but tonight’s expectations are much higher at 49.5 PRA.
No AD = More Minutes?
Here’s why I think this line is set so high:
- It’s an elimination game
- Anthony Davis is questionable
- The public expectation is that James will play more and produce more with his back up against the wall
But after seeing him log just 35 minutes in that play-in game vs Golden State, it’s fair to ask whether he’s still got that 40-plus minute ceiling while working back from the ankle sprain. He’s topped out at 39 minutes this series, and while I understand that the Lakers will empty the clip in a bid to force Game 7, will they run LeBron out there in the 4th quarter of a 30-point blowout like we saw last game?
As for AD, he’s pushing to play. If he does, this LeBron line will go down at least a few points, and we can feed our families on all that sweet CLV.
We barely even touched on the Suns, who not only play slow with the fifth-fewest possessions per game this year but are also efficient, aka good. Their -15.1 Deff rating was third-best this year, and they’ve carried that right over to the playoffs with a -15.2 rating.
Even if King James is healthy, he needs a lot of things to go right to hit this number.