Anthony Edwards Odds and Props: Ant Capturing More Defensive Attention

Anthony Edwards is sure to face a constant barrage of defensive pressure but while his scoring may see a dip as a result, he's proven he can find other ways to make an impact offensively. Read more in our spotlight picks below.

Douglas Farmer - Betting Analyst at Covers
Douglas Farmer • Betting Analyst
May 22, 2024 • 15:14 ET • 4 min read
Anthony Edwards Minnesota Timberwolves NBA
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No player has exploded onto the scene this postseason more than Anthony Edwards. Minnesota Timberwolves fans may have expected this day to come since they were watching him play in an empty Target Center in 2020, but his 31-point average in the first-round sweep of the Suns caught the world’s attention once and for all.

He was not as consistent against the Nuggets, breaking 40 points twice but also falling short of 20 in three games. Credit the defending champions for devoting more defensive resources to Edwards and making other Wolves beat them.

The Dallas Mavericks will almost certainly take the same approach, knowing they cannot survive an efficient Edwards showing, so instead hoping Minnesota’s other offensive options miss their shots.

That kind of expected defensive devotion distinctly influences our favorite of the Anthony Edwards odds tonight, as we delve into our free NBA picks and Mavericks vs. Timberwolves predictions below.

Anthony Edwards prop picks for May 22

Click on each pick to jump to the full analysis.

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Anthony Edwards best bet

Anthony Edwards pick: Under 28.5 points

After getting blown out in Games 1 and 2, Denver focused its defense on Anthony Edwards, holding him to 43-for-96 (44.8%) from the field and 15-for-40 (37.5%) from deep in the final five games of that series. Compare that to the first six games of Edwards’s best postseason: 60-for-128 (46.9%) and 18-for-43 from deep (41.9%).

More notably, Edwards averaged 19.2 shots in the final five games against the Nuggets, compared to 21.3 in the first six games of this postseason. All those downticks may seem marginal, but any marginal drop from Edwards drastically improves his opponent’s chance at a win.

The Dallas Mavericks will have defensive problems in this series, but they have some hope if the Minnesota Timberwolves' other pieces miss their shots. That hope works only if limiting Edwards.

Expect the Mavericks to devote Derrick Jones Jr. to Edwards with constant and quick double-teams, just as Denver did in the last five games. It did not yield the Nuggets a series win, but it did turn two blowout losses into a dramatic seven-game series. Taking that approach from the opening bell could have been all the difference, a lesson made clear for the Mavs.

Anthony Edwards Prop: Under 28.5 points (-112 at BetRivers)

Anthony Edwards same-game parlay

Anthony Edwards Under 28.5 points

Anthony Edwards Under 5.5 rebounds

Anthony Edwards Over 5.5 assists

When Edwards is double-teamed regularly, he's naturally not around the hoop as often on offense to collect a rebound. By no means are offensive rebounds a particular strength of his, but he did grab 52 in 79 regular-season games and had nine through the first five games of the postseason.

He has not grabbed a single offensive rebound in the last six games. His overall rebounding has fallen to 5.4 boards per game since the double teams became a likely focus, in line with this prop but still overall trending away from it.

Similarly, those double teams force Edwards to move the ball. A remarkable trait for a 22-year-old blossoming superstar, Edwards has been diligent about making the correct play throughout this playoff run.

As his shots have diminished, his assists have ticked upward. In the first six games of the postseason, Edwards handed out 35 assists, 5.8 per game. In the last five, the five of note with the Nuggets’ defensive switch, he logged 30 assists, 6.0 per game.

Yes, it's only a slight tick upward, but in these sample sizes, in games with added tension and fewer possessions, slight ticks are often the tells to use moving forward.

Dallas saw Denver change Edwards’ approach. He scored only 16 points in Game 7 on 6-for-24 shooting. That will be the Mavericks’ takeaway, not necessarily noticing he still had a +11 plus/minus and logged seven assists.

Learn how to bet a same-game parlay with these helpful tips and strategies.

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