After seeing four of five underdogs cover on Monday’s short NBA slate, we’re on to a loaded 10-game slate on Tuesday filled with tight matchups like Bucks-Heat, Pelicans-Suns and Nuggets-Kings. As we will all season, we’ll survey for some player props, totals and sides to take. You can follow me on Twitter (@KennyDucey) for any late adds.
Here’s what jumps out to me on DraftKings Sportsbook.
This line has already moved a half-point, and I’m projecting it to continue creeping towards Milwaukee. Without Jimmy Butler, the Bucks should easily exact their revenge in this Eastern Conference Semifinals rematch. Milwaukee’s start to the season hasn’t been pretty, and while I’m bearish on them in general this season, this should be a smash spot. Through three games, Giannis Antetokounmpo’s field goal percentage sits at its lowest mark (47.3%) since his rookie year, and Duncan Robinson has shot over 53% from three. Regression is due to hit both at some point, and while Giannis does draw Bam Adebayo, Robinson will have to try and score on one of the best perimeter defenders of 2020 in Donte DiVicenzo, who allowed just 101 points per 100 possessions. Without the shooting of Robinson, I just don’t see how the Heat can keep pace with this re-tooled Bucks offense.
Yep, we’re only three games in and already things are getting wild. The Knicks? Against the undefeated Cleveland Cavaliers? Well, Cleveland will be without Kevin Love and potentially Isaac Okoro for this one, and while the Knicks have allowed some big games to centers, Andre Drummond might not have much help. New York has actually locked up guards quite well in the early going, boasting the fifth-best defense against point guards, and I don’t think the addition of Dante Exum to the rotation should be a curveball the defense can’t handle.
Julius Randle has been on fire to start the season, and goes against one of the worst front court defenses in basketball. I like his chances to have another monster game, and it doesn’t hurt that the Knicks beat the Cavs twice in the preseason.
I’m banking on Denver being tired here, even though Nikola Jokic effectively played three quarters on Monday. He still had to do pretty much everything for this team, and he nearly lost Jamal Murray after he suffered a head contusion. I wouldn’t be surprised if either or both rest or take it easy against Sacramento.
Sacramento has been a very fun team to watch so far in 2020-21, already pulling off an overtime win over Denver in their season-opener and winning a thriller against Phoenix in game No. 2. Considering both teams are towards the bottom of the league in pace, I’m going to side with the team with the better defensive rating (108.3) so far this year in what should be a battle of half-court sets. I’m not reading into the Nuggets’ beatdown of the Diet Rockets, but I am reading heavily into three quality games played by a team on the rise in Sacramento. Fade the public here, take De’Aaron Fox and Buddy Hield.
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