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NBA Picks: DraftKings Sportsbook Pool Pick’em Prop Pool Predictions for August 21

Zach Thompson breaks down the NBA Pick ‘em Pool on DraftKings Sportsbook, which locks at 1:30 p.m. ET on Friday, August 21.

Brooklyn Nets v Toronto Raptors - Game Two Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images

Friday brings us another great four-game NBA slate as we move to Game 3 for all the series. The Celtics and Raptors are looking to take commanding 3-0 leads over the 76ers and Nets, respectively, while the Nuggets-Jazz and Clippers-Mavericks series are level at one game apiece coming into Friday’s play.

For this slate, DraftKings Sportsbook is hosting an NBA Pick’em pool for cash prizes with a guaranteed prize pool that grows as entries grow. If you live in NJ, NH or WV, make your predictions for the NBA Pick’em pool here. For more DraftKings Sportsbook pool action, check out DraftKings Sportsbook Pools.

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Toronto Raptors vs. Brooklyn Nets: Game Result

The Raptors have dominated the first two games in this series by focusing their defense on slowing down Caris LeVert. LeVert has averaged 15.5 points and 13.0 assists but is shooting just 27.8% and hasn’t made a three-pointer yet in the series. Brooklyn made Game 2 much closer than the Game 1 blowout, but the Nets really don’t have enough depth to keep up with Toronto, especially with Joe Harris leaving the bubble on Wednesday after Game 2. LeVert is an emerging superstar and the Nets’ future should be bright when they come back at full strength, but this year in this series, they’re in over their heads.

Choice: Toronto Raptors

Denver Nuggets vs. Utah Jazz: Game Result

After the Nuggets won in overtime in Game 1, the Jazz responded by shooting the lights out in Game 2 (19-of-33, 58% from three-point range and also 58% overall) to even the series. Utah is also expected to get Mike Conley back from paternity leave, which will help alleviate the playmaking burden off of Donovan Mitchell, who has been outstanding. With Mitchell scoring and distributing at such a high level and Conley coming back, the series seems to be leaning Utah’s way, especially with Denver still missing Will Barton (knee), who is now out indefinitely, and Gary Harris (hip).

Choice: Utah Jazz

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Boston Celtics vs. Philadelphia 76ers: Game Result

The Sixers are also undermanned without Ben Simmons and haven’t been able to keep up with the Celtics, who have been shooting the ball well from long-range, knocking down a total of 29 three-pointers in the first two games of the series. Boston has gotten big games from Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown in both contests, and Kemba Walker is also chipping in good minutes as he continues his recovery from knee soreness. Despite the loss of Gordon Hayward (ankle), Boston appears to have too many options and too much scoring for the 76ers to keep up with. Philadelphia should keep getting good scoring from Joel Embiid, but their outside shooting woes and lack of ability to get consistent secondary scoring make them a long shot to pick up a win in the series.

Choice: Boston Celtics

Los Angeles Clippers vs. Dallas Mavericks: Game Result

The Mavs dominated Game 2 even with Luka Doncic limited to just 28 minutes by foul trouble. Their reserves stepped up and took it to the Clippers, who struggled badly aside from another big game from Kawhi Leonard. Los Angeles was without starting PG Patrick Beverley (calf), who is also doubtful for this contest. They didn’t move the ball especially well and Paul George struggled with his shot (4-of-17, 14 points). Dallas has been very impressive in the bubble and is definitely a team on the rise; however, the Clippers and Kawhi are still the deeper team overall and should be able to bounce back and respond after a down Game 2. I don’t see Dallas’s bench repeating their Game 2 production, and with Leonard the Clippers have a proven playoff producer.

Choice: Los Angeles Clippers

Fred VanVleet Points

Since the restart of play in the bubble, VanVleet has been one of the breakout stars in the NBA, putting up impressive totals and helping the Raptors look like one of the top teams in the East. He had 30 points in Game 1 of this series and 24 points in Game 2. Maybe even more importantly, he’s playing a ton of minutes with 39 minutes in Game 1 and 43 minutes in Game 2. He even shot poorly (8-of-22) and still went over this prop in Game 2, so I think he’ll hit the over again in Game 3 unless it turns into a total blowout, which doesn’t seem likely since the Nets have shown they can hang in there with the defending Champs.

Choice: Over 23.5

Nikola Jokic Points

The Nuggets have gotten consistent production from Jokic in the first two games of the series, and he has been right around this total with 29 points in Game 1 and 28 points in Game 2. Remember, Game 1 did have overtime, though, and he played 42 minutes in that contest. Denver is also getting good production from Michael Porter Jr. and needs the Jamal Murray from Game 1 to re-emerge after a tough Game 2. While Jokic always has the potential to go off, I think Denver is actually better served getting Murray and MPJ going early in this one, which could leave Jokic a little short of this prop. It’s also worth remembering that he’s going up against a great defender in Jazz big-man Rudy Gobert, and that matchup makes his production so far even more impressive.

Choice: Under 28.5 points

Joel Embiid Points

Not surprisingly, Embiid led the Sixers in scoring in each of their two games in this series. He had 26 in Game 1 and followed that with 34 in Game 2. He should continue to dominate the paint since Boston doesn’t have anyone who matches up against his superior size. Without Simmons, the 76ers have to rely on him heavily and need him to carry the offensive workload. Even though I don’t think it’ll be enough to get his team the win, I do expect another big game from The Process.

Choice: Over 29.5 points

Who will have more Points, Rebounds, and Assists?

This prop pits the two superstars for each team head-to-head. The Mavericks’ duo of Doncic and Porzingis would have won this prop in each of the first two games despite foul trouble in Game 2 and Porzingis’ ejection in Game 1. While Kawhi has held up his end of the deal, George has been the weakest link in this group of four and hasn’t shot well or chipped in with big rebounds or assist numbers. While I think the Clippers will win the game, I’m not confident PG13 is ready to turn things around yet. As long as Porzingis isn’t sidelined by his heel bruise injury, which has him probable, he and Doncic should be able to take this prop.

Choice: Luka Doncic/Kristaps Porzingis

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is z.thompson) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above.

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