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NBA Player Prop Picks (6/4/23)
Game 1 of the NBA Finals featured yet another dominant performance from the two-time MVP Nikola Jokic and a double-digit win from the Denver Nuggets. However, there is a lot to be positive about if you are a fan of the Miami Heat; they shot just 40% from the field and only lost by 11 points. Further, the Heat held Denver to just 104 points, which is its second-lowest outing in the 2023 Playoffs.
Can Jimmy Butler, Duncan Robinson, Max Strus, and Caleb Martin combine for more than 19 points in Game 2 to propel the Heat to a road win in Game 2, or will Denver take a 2-0 series lead behind incredible performances from Jokic and Jamal Murray once again? Check out our favorite player props from Game 2 below!
Bam Adebayo o18.5 Points (-105)
Betting on Bam Adebayo can be frustrating; in one game, he might finish with ten points, and then in the next game, he could go off for 25 or 30 points. His range of potential outcomes is volatile, and sometimes an ideal matchup does not even guarantee offensive success. As a matter of fact, before Game 1 of the NBA Finals, Adebayo failed to eclipse this line in five consecutive games; he was scarcely featured offensively.
However, Adebayo put up a monstrous 26-point and 13-rebound performance in Game 1, and the clear highlight of his outing, specific to our betting agenda, was the volume. Bam took 25 shots, which was the most field goal attempts he has had in a game all season long. Can we expect that same volume in Game 2?
It almost seems that Denver’s defense was allowing Bam to take as many shots inside the arc as he wanted, as the Nuggets’ emphasis was on running Miami’s three-point shooters off the line.
Actually, during the process of this write-up, a quote from head coach Michael Malone came out that stated the Nuggets want Bam to shoot a lot. Check out the tweet below!
Michael Malone says the Nuggets will live with Bam Adebayo taking 25 shots to score 26 points
“We didn’t go in saying we’re gonna make Bam Adebayo beat us. We have great respect for Bam Adebayo. But if you’re gonna score 26 points on 25 shots, that’s something we can live… pic.twitter.com/eZvQiUY2k5
— NBACentral (@TheNBACentral) June 4, 2023
Further, three-point shooting has been an area where the Heat have been elite (first in 3P% in the NBA Playoffs), so it should not come as a surprise that this well-coached Denver team wants to hone in on stopping it.
Lastly, Adebayo should not have too much trouble continuing to dominate the paint offensively, as Nikola Jokic’s defense is average at best. Bam has hit the over on this line the last four times he has played against “Joker,” so his confidence on that end of the floor has to be high.
Nikola Jokic o10.5 Assists (-155)
It has been an absolute masterclass postseason for Nikola Jokic, who has averaged a triple-double in the 2023 Playoffs. One of the most impressive aspects of Jokic’s game during that stretch has been his passing; he has averaged 10.5 assists in those 16 games.
Further, Joker has eclipsed this line in eight of his past nine games, and Game 1 of the NBA Finals was no different. No matter what the Miami Heat throw at Jokic, he will have an answer; he racked up six assists in just the first quarter against Miami in Game 1.
Denver’s offense is at its best when Jokic has the ball, as there is more movement, and shooters always seem to find themselves open. With Jokic set to play 40 or more minutes in every game of this NBA Finals, he should have plenty of time to find 11 assists in Game 2.