The NBA is back with a solid six-game slate on deck, and we’re breaking down some top NBA prop bets for Thursday night.
There are a couple of 7:00 EST matchups — an Eastern Conference battle between Miami and Philadelphia, and a matchup that features two of the worst teams in the NBA, Phoenix and Cleveland.
Tonight’s best bet is going to take us into Cleveland as we ride Colin Sexton’s hot hand, and I’ve added a few of my best leans for tonight at the end.
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Cavaliers PG Collin Sexton
Over 16.5 POINTS (-114)
Sexton has been a completely different player in February, finding his shot at will.
In six games this month, he has shot attempts of 17, 24, 18, 14, 21, 22 and in those games, he scored 13, 27, 27, 16, 20 and 24 points for an average of 19.3 shots, 21.2 points and 37.3 minutes per game.
The 19.3 shot attempts ranks eighth in the NBA over the past six games. It’s a significant boost, as his previous high for shot attempts per game in a month was 15.1.
Matchup vs Position
Versus point guards (PGs), the Suns rank 29th in defensive efficiency (DEFF), allowing the ninth-most points per game (24.1), seventh-highest three point percentage and second-most free throws per game to opposing PGs.
Head to Head Matchup
Newly acquired Tyler Johnson is the starting PG for the Suns, and he ranks 80th out of 107 SGs in defensive real plus-minus (DRPM).
The backup point guard, Elie Okobo, ranks 66th out of 98 point guards in DPRM. The other backup guard, Jamal Crawford, ranks 106th out of 107 shooting guards in DPRM.
Matchup vs Team
As a team, the Suns rank 28th in the NBA in PPG allowed (116.1), 28th in DEFF and 29th in defensive rating (DEFRTG) and present a small pace up matchup for the Cavaliers – the Suns are 13th in pace of play, while Cleveland comes in at 29th.
During his rookie year, Sexton has not had any matchups against the Suns. However, with the pristine matchup tonight, I like the chances of Sexton going off for another 20-plus point performance.
I’d pay up to -130 at this number.
If that’s not enough action to satisfy you tonight, here are some of my other leans.
Lebron James Over 27.5 Points
- James is averaging 24.67 PPG over his past three since fully returning from the groin injury
- Houston is ranked 28th in DEFF vs SFs, giving up the 11th-most PPG, third-most FT attempts per game
- The Rockets have been starting Eric Gordon at SF, who ranks 102nd out of 107 SGs in DPRM; Gerald Green ranks 96 out of 107 SGs
Tobias Harris Over 19.5 Points
- In two games as a Clipper vs Miami this year, he scored 20 on 8-19 and 31 on 12-19 shooting
- In four games with Philadelphia, he’s averaging 17.75 PPG on 13.5 shots per game with Embiid in the lineup
- The Heat rank 24th in DEFF vs PFs and let up the 6th most PPG (22.1)
Jaylen Brown Over 13.5 Points
- Celtics do not have Gordon Hayward
- Bucks rank 25th in DvsA vs Brown
- He scored 21 on the Bucks in 30 minutes earlier in the season
- Bucks rank fifth in pace of play, Celtics are 19th, so it’s a pace-up spot
- Bucks’ backup SGs, Tony Snell ranks 42nd, and Sterling Brown ranks 65th out of 107 SGs in DPRM