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The Milwaukee Bucks lost their second of two games with Doc Rivers as their head coach, this time falling to the Portland Trail Blazers 116-119, while the Oklahoma City Thunder took down a Nikola Jokic-less Denver Nuggets team to move back into second place in the Western Conference.
Here are our favorite NBA player prop picks for Thursday.
White has been arguably the most important role player in the league. He’s a fearless three-point shooter who made four threes in back-to-back games and beat this line in seven of his last nine games.
Although White only sank two triples the only other time he played the Los Angeles Lakers this season, he also dished out 11 assists—expecting him to return to his normal shot volume, he has a great chance to make some noise against a Lakers team that gives up the most wide-open threes (6+ feet of space) per game and that is playing its worst defense of the year.
Hartenstein grabbed 12 rebounds against the Utah Jazz on Tuesday, ending a three-game streak of six or fewer rebounds. He averaged 12.1 boards in January but has seen his minutes decline over the last week or so and is also getting an unexpectedly difficult matchup on Thursday.
The Indiana Pacers, despite their lack of size and interior defense, have the eighth-best rebounding percentage in January and are up to fifth over the last seven games, coinciding with the arrival of Pascal Siakam. Hattenstein has really proven his worth as a role player but could struggle to get past his total.
Jackson Jr. is a terrible rebounder and one of the less efficient starting big men in the league. That’s significant because he and the Memphis Grizzlies are taking on a Cleveland Cavaliers team that has the second-best rebound rate and second-best defensive rating in 2024.
JJJ went under this total in back-to-back outings and in three of his last four. With all of the Grizzlies’ injuries, the Cavs can afford to send extra help toward him, and with the likes of Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen available, it should be hard for the reigning Defensive Player of the Year to light up the box score.
Sexton dropped 22 points on the resurgent New York Knicks defense in his most recent game and went over this line in a whopping nine of his last 11 games. He’s shooting the ball extremely well (50.4/43.9/88 shooting splits in 2024) and is playing more than 25 minutes per night for the much-improved Utah Jazz.
The “Young Bull” and company will take on the Philadelphia 76ers, who are already down Joel Embiid, De’Anthony Melton, and several others, and could also miss Tyrese Maxey for the fourth straight game. The lack of speed on the perimeter and interior defense should open up lanes for an aggressive Sexton to get to the cup and create his own shot.
Piggybacking off the above, Harris is going to need to become more active as a rebounder. Although he only averaged 6.0 boards for the season and 5.7 in January, he came up with 10 in his last game against the Golden State Warriors.
The Jazz are one of the taller and better rebounding teams, which should force Harris to be on his best behavior around the rim. Granted, he’ll have to work more for each board, but he’ll also probably have a greater focus on ending their possessions after one shot than he normally does when Embiid is in the middle.
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