After a busy 10-game slate last night, the NBA is back with another seven games tonight. We’ll get a marquee battle between the Nuggets and Clipper as the nightcap, and Victor Oladipo will make his debut for the Heat against the Warriors, too.
Here are the top NBA betting plays for Thursday, April 1, provided by BettingPros experts James Bisson, Raju Byfield, and Isaiah Sirois (Main game odds courtesy BettingPros Consensus; lock and prop odds sites may vary):
Betting Lock of the Day
Sirois: Warriors +3.5 (-110 at FD Sportsbook)
Golden State has gone an unimpressive 22-25 ATS this season. However, Miami has been worse, as they sport a 20-27-1 ATS record. The Warriors got Stephen Curry back on Monday and immediately dissected the Bulls by a 14-point margin, and I expect them to keep the momentum rolling tonight. The Heat just played last night, and they have been miserable when playing with a rest advantage this season. They have gone 1-5 ATS and 2-4 SU in such situations. I suspect that this line has been set here because of Victor Oladipo’s debut, but a fresh Dipo may not be enough to compensate for a two-day rest advantage. The Warriors took down the Heat by an eight-point margin earlier this year, too, and they did so without Draymond Green or James Wiseman.
Top Team Prop of the Day
Sirois: Pelicans First Quarter -2.5 (-120 at FD Sportsbook)
The Pelicans rank fourth in first-quarter scoring with 30.5 points per frame. They even rank 12th in first-quarter defense, as they allow only 28.1 points per frame. In contrast, the Magic rank second-worst in first-quarter offense (25.7) and 14th-worst in first-quarter defense (28.5). Oddsmakers have had to set this line a bit conservatively due to New Orleans’ injury report, as both Lonzo Ball and Zion Williamson could miss tonight’s game, but I’m comfortable taking it anyway. Even if both players sit, the Pelicans will have enough of their starters to get out to a hot start against a depleted Magic squad. Orlando scored just 13 points in their most recent first quarter. They have averaged 22.3 points per first quarter since the trade deadline.
Top Player Prop of the Day
Sirois: Gordon Hayward Over 6.5 Rebounds (+112 at FD Sportsbook)
Here’s a plus-money prop that I like a lot. Hayward has averaged eight rebounds per game since LaMelo Ball went down, and he has gone over this total in four of those five games. He has seen his minutes tick up in Ball’s absence, as he has played 36-plus in all but one outing. The Hornets are on the front end of a back-to-back set, but they have a real shot to beat the banged-up Nets who are on the second leg of a back-to-back. Hayward should see plenty of playing time in what’ll likely be a close battle.
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