NBA Expert Tips and Best Bets | February 7

NBA Tips & Best Bets
Best Bets 2023 / 2024

Wednesday Australia time will see an intriguing slate of NBA games take place. Though there are only seven games across the course of the day, there is plenty of interest among many of those; the Rockets take on the Pacers, the Magic face off against the Heat, the Thunder take on the Jazz, while the best of them all is saved for last when the Suns host the Bucks. These are our three best bets for the day’s action. 

Memphis Grizzlies @ New York Knicks

Isaiah Hartenstein over 10.5 rebounds | $1.75 with BlueBet 

Isaiah Hartenstein has been a solid player for the Knicks since their starting centre Mitchell Robinson went down, and though he doesn’t do much in the way of scoring he is a capable passer and a wrecking ball on the glass at both ends of the floor. Prior to a short-term injury which kept him out for a couple of games he was regularly going well into double figures in the rebounding department, though those numbers dropped upon his return last week. Rather than being a product of any lingering issues or any other change, it was simply the fact that he was eased back into the action with 16 minutes apiece in each of those two games. In his last three games he has begun to return to something more closely resembling the time on court he was getting prior to his injury – playing 29, 35 and 33 minutes in those games – and surprise surprise, his rebounding numbers have catapulted back up. In those games he has snared 12, 19 and 15 rebounds, going at a rate of close to one for every two minutes on the floor. For whatever reason, however, betting agencies haven’t yet readjusted to the fact that he is back playing normal minutes. His line is still set at just 10.5, a number which he passed in seven consecutive games prior to his injury and which he has passed in his last three games since returning to normal playing time. If he plays a full game, he passes this number in his sleep. The Knicks may well blow out the injury riddled Grizzlies which will reduce his playing time slightly, but he should still see more than enough time on the court to surpass 10 rebounds with relative ease.

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Isaiah Hartenstein over 10.5 rebounds vs Grizzlies @ $1.75

Orlando Magic @ Miami Heat

Jimmy Butler over 18.5 points | $1.90 with PlayUp 

It’s no secret that Jimmy Butler is a different player in the postseason to the regular season, but even by his standards he has seemed a little lacklustre at times so far in 2023/24. That was particularly noticeable during a five-game stretch in mid-late January during which he didn’t take more than 11 shots in a single game, but the penny seems to have dropped that he needs to take a little more control, and take control he has. Following that aforementioned stretch he bounced back into some of his best form with a 28 point game in which he took 20 shots against the Knicks, and he hasn’t looked back since. He managed 26 the next game, then 31, 24 and 21, giving him an average of 26 points in that time and five consecutive games of 21 points or more. Clearly he is in a solid vein of form and has upped the ante as we near the All-Star break with the Heat embroiled in a tight battle in the Western Conference for the lower playoff spots, but NBA betting sites haven’t yet adjusted his numbers. His over/under points total is set at just 18.5, which is lower than his season average by 3 points and 8 points lower than what he has averaged over the last five games. Granted the Magic are a strong defensive team and this won’t likely be a high scoring game, but nonetheless this line looks way too low based on Butler’s heightened aggression at the offensive end of the floor in recent games. He’s not a guy to come out and get 30 or 40 points all that often if he doesn’t need to, but he should be able to float by 20 in this one and pass his points total. 

Jimmy Butler over 18.5 points vs Magic @ $1.90

Milwaukee Bucks @ Phoenix Suns

Grayson Allen under 12.5 total match points | $1.89 with GetSetBet 

Rounding out our bets for the day is yet another player props, this time in the match of the day between the Bucks and the Suns. Under bets are never all that much fun to watch, but this one looks like a great spot for a guy who is shooting better than anyone in the league this season, but who gets very few looks per game. And fair enough, too, given that he shares the floor with Kevin Durant, Devin Booker and Bradley Beal. Grayson Allen is averaging 13 points per game, which is right around his points total for this one, but a lot of those games have not had all three of his star teammates playing. With all of them on the floor, unsurprisingly his opportunities have gone down. He has still been extremely efficient, but so few shots is he getting that he is still rarely passing this points total. That makes me like it even more. Allen hasn’t had more than 12 points in any of his last five games, despite shooting nearly 61% in that time from the field and over 45% from three. In those five games, he has taken a grand total of 23 shots, an average of 4.6 per game and a number from which it is unsurprisingly very difficult to score 13 points or more. He takes what he is given, and though he is very good at converting them, he is not given all that much. Even if he takes closer to six or seven shots as he has in his last couple of games, he’ll probably need to hit five of them with more of those being threes than not to pass this points total. Allen is a weapon from the outside, something to which the 49.1% he is shooting from long range this season can attest, but he just doesn’t get enough shots at the moment to justify this points total. 

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Grayson Allen under 12.5 points vs Bucks @ $1.89

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James is a sports writer from Melbourne, and has contributed to a variety of publications covering a range of sports including basketball, cricket, Australian Rules, golf and surfing to name a few. An avid fan of all of the above and more, James’ downtime is spent falling ungracefully off his surfboard, turning over footies and playing an out of tune guitar.