Key Injuries to Monitor
- Darius Garland (eye) — OUT
- Terry Rozier (ankle) — Doubtful
- Cody Martin (quad) — Doubtful
- De’Anthony Melton (abductor) — Questionable
- Scottie Barnes (ankle) — Questionable
- Otto Porter Jr. (hamstring) — Doubtful
- Myles Turner (ankle) — Questionable
- Austin Rivers (hip) — Doubtful
- Kyle Anderson (back) — OUT
San Antonio Spurs
- Devin Vassell (knee) — OUT
- Jae’Sean Tate (ankle) — Questionable
- Alperen Sengun (ilness) — OUT
- Michael Porter Jr. (injury management) — Questionable
- Jeff Green (finger) — Probable
Los Angeles Lakers
- Russell Westbrook (hamstring) — Doubtful
Top Scoring Environments
Five games break the 230 game total mark on DraftKings Sportsbook today:
Hawks-Pistons: 231 — Two high-octane backcourt duos going at it? Sign me up!
Nets-Bucks: 233.5 — The marquee matchup on tonight’s slate. Milwaukee remains undefeated, while the Nets have struggled so far. It will be interesting to see how Ben Simmons fares against Giannis.
Spurs-Timberwolves: 232 — San Antonio and Minnesota are giving up 115-plus points per game this season. It feels like we’re in for more of the same tonight between these two.
Pacers-Bulls: 234 — The Pacers are allowing over 120 points per game this year. That’s a staggering number. Chicago will surely take advantage of that poor defense.
Rockets-Jazz: 233.5 — A week ago, no one would have given this matchup a second glance. Now? The Jazz are must-see TV.
Second night of back-to-back
- Detroit Pistons — No notable rest situations
Favorite Pick Against the Spread
Bucks (-3.5) vs. Nets
I’ll believe it when I see it with the Nets. Brooklyn has faced two potential contenders so far this year — the Pelicans and Grizzlies — and both games resulted in double-digit losses.
Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving are scoring at will, but they aren’t getting much help. That includes Ben Simmons, who has fouled out in two of Brooklyn’s three games, while not contributing much offensively.
The Nets simply don’t have the pieces to keep up with elite contenders like the Bucks, which is why I expect Milwaukee to cover the spread tonight.
Favorite Player Prop
James Harden Over 39.5 Points, Rebounds & Assists
I’m going to keep going back to James Harden’s PRA as my favorite player prop until this number significantly rises or his production drops off. The Beard has cleared this number easily in three of his four games this season, averaging 26.8 points, 9.8 assists and 8.5 rebounds per game.
Tonight, Harden draws a tough Raptors defense. That being said, his usage rate hasn’t dropped below 23% in a game yet and I expect more of the same from him tonight.
Favorite Value Play
Jazz PF/C Jarred Vanderbilt ($5,100) vs. Rockets
Lauri Markkanen and Kelly Olynyk are receiving most of the hype in Utah right now, but Vanderbilt has quietly produced at a high level. The 23-year-old has scored 32-plus fantasy points in three straight games.
Tonight, Vanderbilt and the Jazz face off against the Rockets, who rank 25th in fantasy points allowed to big men. Not only is Houston abysmal defensively in the paint, but Alperen Sengun and Bruno Caboclo are both out for tonight’s game. Vanderbilt should see plenty of opportunities to keep his hot streak alive.
Lakers SF/PF LeBron James ($9,900) at Nuggets
We’ve seen enough from the Lakers to know LeBron will have to carry this team once again, at least until Rob Pelinka gets him some help. So far this season, James’ heroics just haven’t been enough, as L.A. sits at 0-3 with a real possibility to remain winless after tonight’s game.
While the Lakers have struggled as a team, LeBron has still put up numbers, scoring 60-plus fantasy points in two of his three contests. The Nuggets aren’t particularly strong defensively against wings, so I expect James to have another big night.
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