Best NBA Player Props Today: Murphy Murks the Bucks From Deep

There's an expanded role for Trey Murphy III in the Pelicans offense tonight, and our NBA player prop picks for Thursday are tabbing the NOP swingman to make the most of the opportunity.

Mar 28, 2024 • 11:21 ET • 4 min read

With Opening Day and March Madness in full swing, we only have two games on the Association's schedule for Thursday, but whether it's two games or 15, we can still find some probability gaps to exploit in the NBA odds

We're coming off a sweep on Wednesday with our assists props, as Jalen Green and Dillon Brooks both cashed in on big plus-money prices on their props. 

With only two games on Thursday and one of them featuring a 17.5-point spread, there aren't enough exploitable edges to only live in the assists market. So, find out which other NBA player props I'm backing in my free NBA picks for Thursday, March 28.

Best NBA player props today

Picks made on March 28 at 7:00 a.m. ET.
Read full analysis of each pick.

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NBA player props for March 28

Prop bet #1: Kristaps Porzingis

I could just say we're running back Monday's bet on Kristaps Porzingis, as it's the exact same matchup against the Hawks in Atlanta, but every day brings new numbers, so let's break them down. 

On Monday, we played Porzingis Over 1.5 assists (-120) against the Hawks, and he delivered with a green checkmark. It was a slightly different scenario though, as the blowout potential was much lower. The Celtics were without Jrue Holiday and Derrick White and were only favored by 10.5 points. 

For Thursday's game, White is off the injury report, Holiday is questionable, Dejounte Murray isn't guaranteed to play, and not only have the Celtics not played since Monday when they faced the Hawks in Atlanta, but the Hawks are playing this game on the second night of a back-to-back. Therefore, the Celtics are favored by 17.5 points, which makes betting on the Over much trickier. 

The good news is you're being compensated for all of this, as Thursday's price on Porzingis opened at +106 at Caesars for the Over 1.5. It's a different day, a different scenario, but we still show a nice probability gap on Porzingis because of where this price opened. 

On the basketball side of things, nothing changes. Porzingis' shooting can force Clint Capela to vacate the paint, leaving the Hawks with no rim protection and Porzingis with the ability to find cutters for high-value potential assists. If the Hawks guard Porzingis with a smaller player, they will be forced to send doubles, which will also open up potential assists. 

Porzingis is projected to have 2.1 assists on Thursday against the Hawks, which allows us to price the Over 1.5 assists at -152, but Kristaps Porzingis odds are available at Caesars at +106.

Kristaps Porzingis prop: Over 1.5 assists (+106 at Caesars)

Prop bet #2: Khris Middleton

If you had Khris Middleton odds going Over his points total against the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday, condolences, as Middleton only scored 12 points in a game that went to double overtime, and he played 39 minutes. The good news is the Under from Tuesday, I believe, is opening the door for a bet here on Thursday.

When Middleton played the Lakers on Tuesday, his points total was trading at 15.5. But after scoring 11 and 12 points in his last two games, we are seeing this number open at 13.5 for Middleton on Thursday, creating a probability gap that we can exploit.

The shots are there for Middleton; he just needs to make them. Against the Lakers, he was 4-15 from the field, and he should see plenty of opportunity on Thursday against the Pelicans. With Herbert Jones on the wing harassing Giannis Antetokounmpo and Damian Lillard, the Bucks will have to lean on some of their secondary pieces to make shots against a stout Pelicans defense.

Middleton is projected to score 15.7 points against the Pelicans, so you can see how the drop in his total from 15.5 to 13.5 makes a big difference here to our edge. A projection of 15.7 wouldn't clear a total of 15.5, but at 13.5, we can hit the button on the Over. This projection allows us to price the over 13.5 points at -159, but it is available at theScore at -125, and this bet is showing a positive expected value of 11%.

Khris Middleton prop: Over 13.5 points (-125 at theScore)

Prop bet #3: Trey Murphy

Okay, let me set the table here for this matchup between the Pelicans and Bucks. The Pelicans are without Brandon Ingram, who is out for a couple of weeks with a knee injury. Ingram was averaging a career-high in assists and doing an excellent job of creating for his teammates. 

With Ingram out, the Point Zion Williamson idea the Pelicans had been using with Ingram in the lineup is now full steam ahead. Williamson had 10 assists on Tuesday against the Oklahoma City Thunder, but where am I going with all of this?

The ricochet of Ingram being out is not only that Trey Murphy has been inserted into the starting lineup but also how the Pelicans are creating offense. Williamson is on the ball a lot more and essentially playing the point. Against the Bucks, though, he will need someone to help create space for him and give him room to operate. 

Murphy has entered the chat because not only can he make threes, but he will take deep 3-pointers which really pull the defense out, helping to create space. Against the Bucks, Williamson should also find himself kicking out to shooters once he gets into the lane. The Bucks have size and rim protection; they can force Williamson to pass, and this should also lead to some open Murphy 3-point attempts.

Murphy is projected to knock down 3.4 threes on Thursday against the Bucks, which allows us to price the Over 2.5 threes made at -196, but Trey Murphy odds are available at DraftKings at -150. Laying -150 isn't always the most exciting bet, but we're seeing an expected value of 10%.

Trey Murphy prop: Over 2.5 threes made (-150 at DraftKings)

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