Best NBA Plays of the Day at No House Advantage (8/8)
The NBA playoffs are fast approaching, and both the Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Lakers have locked up the first seeds. As the season winds down, it’s smart to capitalize on the trove of data we’ve accumulated over the regular season to maximize your DFS winnings.
The DFS market has exploded in recent years, and you’ve got a plethora of options aside from the big-names of DraftKings and FanDuel. No House Advantage (NHA) is one such upstart competitor, and the site has eschewed the traditional salary cap structure in favor of ranked prop bets.
What does that mean? At NHA, you must pick a set number of individual player prop lines, take the over or under, and put them in order. The higher you rank a line, the more points you receive if it hits.
If you’re an experienced DFS player, you know that the payout structure will dictate your strategy. For this week’s 36-person $500 Slam Dunk contest, 60% of the prize pool goes to first place. The slate only includes the Bucks and Mavericks game, however, so we’ll need to dig carefully to find value. Last week’s NHA predictions went a perfect 5-0, so I hope that I can repeat that performance!
Best High-Priority Prop Plays
Eric Bledsoe (MIL): UNDER 20.5 Points and Assists
This prop is the safest one on the slate. Bledsoe will remain on a minutes limit for this one, and he hasn’t played more than 23 minutes in a bubble game. As a result, we shouldn’t expect a ton of production out of him. This line already sits above Bledsoe’s per game average of 19.6, and it’s far above his bubble average of 13.
You should expect this to be a popular line on Saturday. But since there’s a player cap of 36, I wouldn’t feel the need to get too contrarian. I would expect most users to play the under for either Bledsoe’s points or points and assists, but I think that the extra breathing room this line affords you makes it more strategic.
Kristaps Porzingis (DAL): UNDER 9.5 Rebounds
I’m confident in this line, but it’s no sure thing — the numbers don’t agree with me. Porzingis averages 9.5 rebounds per game, and that rate jumps to 10 for bubble games. He earned 12 in his last matchup with Milwaukee, too, in a game the Mavs won by two.
So why do I like the under? Well, Doncic missed the only prior matchup between these two. He also missed a bunch of other games that inflated Porzingis’s stats. While Porzingis cleared the over with Doncic in the lineup in February and March (11.3), he earned far fewer with Doncic around in January (5.8) and from October to December (8.9).
If you still don’t believe me, let’s talk medians. Porzingis may be averaging 10 rebounds per game in the bubble, but he cleared the over only once. After his 16-rebound performance against Houston, he posted eight against Phoenix, seven against Sacramento, and nine against the Clippers. This prop is a smart high-priority pick, as some users may opt to take the over instead.
Best Low-Priority Prop Plays
Luka Doncic (DAL): OVER 8.5 Assists
The Bucks are heavy favorites (-5.5) at most sportsbooks, but FiveThirtyEight gives them an advantage of just -2.5. While the Bucks feature the league’s leading defense, they’ve conceded 110-plus points in all of their bubble games. I don’t expect this game to go any differently — especially since the Mavs posted 120 points against them back in December.
Doncic cleared the over in 32 of his 58 games, and that includes three of his four bubble games. He averages 8.8 assists per game on the year, and that jumps to 9.8 when you treat the bubble in isolation. I trust Doncic to get the best of the Bucks’ defense in this one, and this is the line he’s likeliest to clear.
Khris Middleton (MIL): OVER 5.5 Rebounds
This line should be set at 6.5. Middleton averages 6.2 rebounds per game, and he’s averaged 6.8 per game in the bubble. His average is that high despite the fact he only played 15 minutes against the Nets. He posted five rebounds against the Celtics, 12 against the Rockets, and eight against the Heat.
Middleton averages .23 rebounds per minute — that means he should hit six as long as he plays 26 minutes. Since he hit that minute mark in all but the Nets game, this seems like a safe play. The Bucks could decide to pull their starters again, however, so I’d keep it toward the bottom of your lineup.
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