As the summer rolls on, there are some enticing prop bets worth considering before the NBA season kicks off.
First, keep an eye on Scoot Henderson and Stephen Curry’s point totals out West, as both guards will have added shooting opportunities all season long without Jordan Poole and Damian Lillard sharing the floor.
Meanwhile, in the Eastern Conference, there’s a surprise MVP candidate to watch closely with an opportunity to lead the league in assists. These early prop bets offer a unique opportunity to capitalize on potential value before their totals increase closer to the start of the highly anticipated NBA season.
Portland Trail Blazers | OVER 15.8 PPG
Scoot’s prop of 15.8 PPG will only elevate towards the beginning of the season as the uncertainty surrounding Damian Lillard’s situation is due to get even more cloudy.
There are two potential scenarios for the upcoming Portland season. In the first, Lillard gets traded to Miami before the season, putting Scoot in the spotlight as the focal point of the offense from the beginning.
Alternatively, in the second scenario, Dame remains with the team until the trade deadline, and Scoot excels either by leading the league in points off the bench or becoming a key secondary playmaker and scorer for Portland.
Regardless of the outcome, this prop bet of 15.8 PPG for Henderson is a surefire hit, given his elite first step, basketball IQ, and improved shooting.
WHY TAKE THE OVER?
Since 2018, 14 players have scored above the 15.8 prop in their rookie season, most being guards. Although Scoot may not reach Luka Doncic’s numbers in his debut season, it’s essential to consider that the 6’2 freight train of a guard has already spent two seasons honing his skills in the G-League.
This experience makes him the most NBA-ready prospect in this year’s class which came to life in his few NBA Summer League minutes, displaying a large repertoire of moves on the offensive end, including an unguardable snatch-back.
Golden State Warriors | OVER 28.9 PPG
While there remains uncertainty among experts and executives in the basketball community about trading Jordan Poole, a valuable asset from the Warriors’ championship run a few years ago, for an older player like Chris Paul, there is one thing we are sure about – Stephen Curry’s point prop on PrizePicks is a winner.
WHY TAKE THE OVER?
After an inefficient 2021-22 campaign (for his standards), Steph dropped 29.4 PPG, 6.3 APG, and shot 4.7% better from beyond the arc last season. Fellow splash brother Klay Thompson had a lackluster postseason, which ultimately led to their collapse against the Los Angeles Lakers in Round 2.
Watching Steph navigate into an all-around scorer is why this bet is enticing. Although 35 years old, there’s a great chance he can hit that 30 PPG mark again in his career due to the advanced 3-level scoring he’s displayed the past couple of seasons.
His 3-point-attempt-rate, or percentage of a player’s field goals from deep, matched his 2015-16 numbers when Steph won MVP and dropped 30 PPG for Steve Kerr and Golden State.
With the loss of Jordan Poole (20.4 PPG) and the addition of Chris Paul (13.9 PPG, 8.9 APG), Steve Kerr might adapt to Curry playing more of an off-ball role at times, freeing him up for more shot attempts per 100 possessions which is a recipe for success if taking the Curry point total on PrizePicks.
Indiana Pacers | OVER 9.7 APG
Tyrese Haliburton averaged 10.4 APG last season. The Pacers went after high-flying rim runners, 3-point shooters, and high-IQ players all off-season to fill out the roster.
With the revamped roster supporting his playmaking abilities, he could even become a serious contender in the MVP discussions, given his excellent chance of leading the league in assists.
Ultimately, with Rick Carlisle as his Head Coach, the team should finish top 5 team in pace and 3-point shooting which will allow for a 2nd consecutive 10 APG season for the Iowa State product.
WHY TAKE THE OVER?
The Pacers not only retained most of their roster but added more wing depth to help Hali’s playmaking jump to the next level, as Bruce Brown, Walker, and Sheppard are all high-IQ offensive players.
As for other free agents and returning talent, Obi Toppin and Ben Mathurin offer elite cutting and athleticism in both the half-court and transition as backup PG Andrew Nembhard and potential backup wing Buddy Hield should both shoot 38% from deep or better.
With so many options to pick from and an offense curated by the top mind in basketball, give me the Pacers to finish top 5 in the East and Haliburton to lead the league in assists.
Atlanta Hawks | UNDER 9.8 APG
Trae Young hit the over last season, averaging 10.2 APG. However, this bet is an anti-two PG backcourt and anti-Hawks pick. Atlanta is in what I like to call “the no-fun zone”.
This is a team with three ball-dominant combo guards, a few wings that haven’t solidified themselves as game-changers in the league, and some uncertainty among their current bigs. Clint Capela’s presence as a reliable finisher off of Trae’s passes has been a crucial element in Young’s ability to rack up assists.
Without that connection, Trae might find it challenging to maintain the same assist numbers. Moreover, the additions of players like Dejounte Murray and Kobe Bufkin, who demand touches on offense, should further dilute Trae’s playmaking opportunities. As a result, this situation in Atlanta warrants caution not only for Young but the future of the organization.