Handicapping the NBA: Best Bets for Friday Night
Handicapping the NBA: Best Bets for Friday Night

This article is part of our Handicapping the NBA series.

We have plenty of action to wager on in the NBA on Friday with eight games on the schedule. Let's check in on where my record stands through the first four weeks of the column.

Player props: 10-6

Spread Picks: 2-2

Parlays: 0-4

Without further ado, here are some of my favorite bets for the evening. As per usual, all odds are obtained from the FanDuel Sportsbook.

PLAYER PROPS

Marvin Williams, 11.5 Points: Over (-128)

I'll start right off with my favorite wager of the day. Williams has scored nine points or fewer in three of his last four games, which may be why this number is set so low. However, the other game during that stretch was a 30-point performance against the Wizards, who he will be facing Friday. He's scored at least 13 points in each of his previous three games against the Wizards this season and has a great chance to hit the over since they allow the second-most points per game (116.8) in the league.

C.J. McCollum, 2.5 Made Three-Pointers: Over (-128)

McCollum is on an offensive hot streak right now by averaging 25.4 points across his last eight games. He's been lethal from behind the arc, shooting 50.8 percent and averaging 4.1 three-pointers a game during that stretch. His 25.6 percent usage rate ranks second-highest on the Blazers and he's averaging a career-high 6.5 three-point attempts per contest, which makes taking the over very intriguing. It also helps his cause that the Pelicans play at the fourth-fastest pace (103.8 possessions per game) and are tied for the ninth-highest three-point shooting percentage allowed in the league.

Eric Gordon, 3.5 Made Three-Pointers: Over (+118)

Make no mistake about it, Gordon is on the Rockets to shoot. He doesn't provide hardly any rebounds, assists or defensive stats, but he's averaging 16.6 points and three three-pointers a game this season. His three-point shooting prowess has been on full display of late with him knocking down at least four triples in seven of his last 10 contests. There is plenty of blowout concern for this game, but with the Suns allowing the fourth-highest three-point shooting percentage (36.5 percent) in the league, taking a chance on the over with these odds could prove to be profitable.

Patrick Beverley, 5.5 Rebounds: Over (-112)

It sure seemed like the Clippers were going to take a step backwards after they traded Tobias Harris to the Sixers. Not only have they continued to play well, but they could realistically work their way up to the sixth seed in the Western Conference. That's helped to leave their veterans with plenty of playing time, including Beverley. While his scoring contributions have been inconsistent, he's hauled in at least six boards in eight of his last 10 games. In fact, he grabbed at least nine rebounds four times during that stretch. With the Bulls allowing the sixth-most rebounds per game (46.3), this is a great spot for Beverley to hit the over.

SPREAD PICK

Portland Trail Blazers at New Orleans Pelicans: POR (-7.5)

The wheels are starting to come off for the Pelicans. The combination of Anthony Davis playing limited minutes and Jrue Holiday (abdomen) being out has caused them to lose their last three games by an average of 17.3 points. They did face two tough opponents in the Raptors and Bucks and will get another one in the Blazers on Friday. The Blazers are not only a stellar team at home, but they are 8-4 against the spread as a road favorite. Look for them to take care of business and get the cover.

PARLAY

Kelly Oubre Jr. Over 16.5 Points and Lauri Markkanen Under 20.5 Points (+261)

Since the player props have gone well up to this point, let's combine two of them to try and hit the parlay. Oubre had a hard time finding his way with the Wizards this season, but he's averaging 16.3 points across 38 games since being traded to the Suns. Part of the reason for his improved scoring output is that his usage rate is 24.6 percent with the Suns compared to 20.9 percent when he was with the Wizards. After scoring at least 17 points in eight of his last 11 contests, Oubre should shine once again offensively.

Markkanen went on a crazy 11-game stretch from February into March in which he averaged a whopping 26.5 points per game. He shot 48.7 percent from the field during that stretch, which was a significant improvement over his 43.2 percent field goal percentage for the season. However, he's hit the opposite end of the spectrum of late, averaging 15 points and shooting 34.4 percent from the field over his last six contests. He could also see fewer scoring opportunities with Zach LaVine (knee) expected to return, so I'll take the under on this lofty point total.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mike Barner
Mike started covering fantasy sports in 2007, joining RotoWire in 2010. In 2018, he was a finalist for the 2018 FSWA Basketball Writer of the Year award. In addition to RotoWire, Mike has written for Sportsline, Sports Illustrated, DK Live, RealTime Fantasy Sports, Lineup Lab and KFFL.com.
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