Four of the six teams playing Thursday are on the second leg of a back-to-back, pushing me toward the other two teams included on this three-game NBA slate. Here’s how to best navigate Thursday’s NBA action via DraftKings Sportsbook.
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All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.
Some might find the under more appealing when one team is on the second leg of a back-to-back, and that’s totally fair. But between the Lakers being fresh and the fact there’s such a large talent gap between these two teams even on full rest, I can help but think L.A. is going to plow through Memphis. Yes, the Grizzlies have been better defensively without Ja Morant (health protocols/knee), but they’re on the second leg of a back-to-back and just put forth a tough defensive effort vs. Dallas. Replicating that against a Lakers team at full strength is asking a lot.
Furthermore, the Lakers have hit the over 15 times in 25 games. The Grizzlies have also played 25 games to this point in the season, hitting the over 13 times. These two teams are averaging north of 110 points scored and allowed this season, putting the over in this contest well within reach — especially with LeBron James and Anthony Davis both only carrying probable tags in this one, rather than their standard “questionable” status.
When it comes to the spread pick, the Lakers are quite a bit worse at home than one the road, and Memphis is much better L.A. ATS. But I think this number is too low given the team with the two best players in this contest are on full rest and at full strength while the other team is playing its second game in as many days.
Poeltl flirts with a double-double every night. Averaging 12.3 points and 9.3 rebounds per game, he’s logged three double-doubles in his last seven games, coming two rebounds or fewer shy on two other occasions.
Now, simply taking the over on Poeltl’s points and rebounds total (20.5) is an option, but I’m comfortable chasing more value (+160 vs. -125) because of the way opposing bigs have performed vs. Denver. The last two centers opposite Nikola Jokic — Jonas Valanciunas and Nikola Vucevic — posted double-doubles. Julius Randle came three rebounds shy of one, and Wendell Carter Jr. was only two short.
On top of all that, Denver is on the second leg of a back-to-back. San Antonio has fresh legs.
Yes, I’m backing both Poeltl and Murray to post double-doubles Thursday. Murray carried a seven-game double-double streak in San Antonio’s last game, but the Knicks somehow snapped that — a down game for Murray across the board. And each of Poeltl’s three recent double-doubles came on a night Murrary posted one of his own.
Of course, Murray always has a chance to pop off a triple-double (+650). Definitely the kind of night to get a little piece of that action, but if you’re looking for a full-unit bet, Murray’s double-double option presents the best blend of security and value. The Nuggets recently allowed Lonzo Ball to go off for a 20-10 double-double, and Cole Anthony came two rebounds shy of logging one vs. Denver on the first of the month.
Lastly, it was noted when discussing Poeltl that Denver is on the second game of a back-to-back, but it’s also worth pointing out both games are road contests. Yes, New Orleans to San Antonio isn’t the longest flight in the world, but there’s a difference between a road-road and a road-home back-to-back.
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