Best NBA Betting Picks and Player Props for Friday, January 24

Russell Westbrook of the Houston Rockets (photo credit: USA TODAY Sports)

Welcome to SharpSide’s NBA article for Friday, January 24, talking best betting picks and player props across the 11-game slate.

Russell Westbrook, PG, Houston Rockets

– Over 8.5 Rebounds (-105)

The first bet of the day will be a Russell Wesbrook player prop. Westbrook struggled early on with the Houston Rockets but has found more of his groove in this lineup. I do think this matchup against the Minnesota Timberwolves fits well for Westbrook, especially for rebound opportunities.

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In the RotoGrinders Defense vs. Matchup Tool, Westbrook grades out to have a 23.4% boost in rebounds versus average opponents. This game has a 234.5-point total, which is the highest total of the day and this game is likely the fastest pace of the day. I expect a lot of rebound opportunities for Westbrook and a player prop line of 8.5 rebounds at even money seems too low. I think this line should be 9.5 rebounds.

Westbrook has had over 8.5 rebounds in his last four games. I’m jumping on the over here for Westbrook at 8.5 rebounds because I think we are getting some good value in this matchup.

Nemanja Bjelica, PF, Sacramento Kings

– Over 2.5 Assists (-117)

The banged-up Sacramento Kings travel to take on the Chicago Bulls in Chicago on Friday night. Dealing with an injury to Marvin Bagley is nothing new to the Kings because they have been dealing with this all season long. I’m attacking the over tonight on assists for Nemanja Bjelica because the Kings traded away Trevor Ariza and have lost Bagley due to injury. Even though they traded for Kent Bazemore and he played 16 minutes the other day, this has still opened solid value for Bjelica.

In the last two games with Bagley out and Ariza gone, Bjelica has had more than 2.5 assists in both games. This matchup against the Bulls grades out well on the RotoGrinders Defense vs. Matchup Tool, too, as Bjelica will see a boost in assists at a 6.5% rate. It doesn’t grade out the highest on the slate, but it’s still a nice boost.

I don’t think this line has adjusted for the news going on with the Kings. It’s probably fair that this line is at 3.5 assists, but it should be juiced up at around -140 not -117. Naturally, we gain more than 20 cents of value in a plus matchup and that’s why I’m taking the over.

Domantas Sabonis, PF, Indiana Pacers

– Over 12.5 Rebounds (-121)

The third bet we have is a Domantas Sabonis player prop. Sabonis is a beast on the boards and we will be looking to take the over on 12.5 rebounds. This is a great matchup against a Golden State Warriors team that Sabonis should be able to dominate on the boards. It’s a great matchup for Sabonis because he will see a boost in rebounds by 26.45%. That’s a massive increase for a guy that is very active on the boards and he should grab a ton tonight.

The line of 12.5 feels high for any NBA player, but Sabonis is averaging 12.9 rebounds on the season and should dominate in this matchup. I see a ton of value in this matchup and that’s why I’m taking the over on 12.5 rebounds.

Houston Rockets (-5.5)

I thought the Houston Rockets would have a big game against the Denver Nuggets on Wednesday night as a perfect get-right spot and they did. The only problem was that James Harden hasn’t really got right yet, only shooting 6-for-13 from the field. I think that was in part due to the game being ugly early on and he was probably just happy that he shot a solid percentage while others got buckets in the process.

I do expect Harden’s shooting woes to turn the other way soon and this is a spot where I could easily see it happening. He’s due for positive regression and this matchup funnels a ton of usage to combo guards, which is what Harden is. I think the Rockets (-5.5) on the point spread is a low of a line and it could be 6.5 or 7.5. I expect Harden to have a get-right game here soon and I think this Rockets team is ready to turn things around and roll.

I’ll take the Rockets at -5.5 against the Minnesota Timberwolves tonight.

NBA Record: 56-54 (+1.55 units)

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