NBA Props: Dime-Dropping Dejounte Murray Headlines Wednesday Action

Dejounte Murray #5 of the San Antonio Spurs dribbles the ball in the second quarter against the Indiana Pacers at Gainbridge Fieldhouse on November 01, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Image Credit: Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Each week, selects five intriguing player and/or team NBA props from a busy night of action. Then, we do what we do best: Provide in-depth analysis that you can choose to use (or not use!) for wagering purposes.

Here are our five favorite NBA props from Wednesday’s slate of 12 games.

NBA props and odds via DraftKings and updated as of 3 p.m. ET on March 9.

Chicago Bulls: SG DeMar DeRozan

DeMar DeRozan #11 of the Chicago Bulls looks on during the second quarter against the Orlando Magic at Amway Center on November 26, 2021 in Orlando, Florida.
Image Credit: Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images

The Prop: 28.5 points (at Detroit)
The Odds: Over -110/Under -115

It’s difficult to understand the rationale behind Wednesday’s 28.5 total. It’s way too high.

Dating back to January 2019 (covering time with the Spurs and Bulls), DeRozan scored 29 or more points against the Pistons just once; and for that six-game stretch, he averaged 21.4 points.

From a macro perspective, the young Pistons have the NBA’s eighth-worst scoring defense (allowing 112.5 ppg). However, in its last five games, Detroit has limited the opposing team’s best playmaker to only 22.2 points. The Hornets’ Miles Bridges was the high scorer of that stint at 29 points (Feb. 27).

For Chicago’s ongoing losing slide (five games), DeRozan is averaging only 24.6 points. Contrast that with the 14-game period of Jan. 26-Feb. 24, when the five-time All-Star averaged 34.2 points for the Bulls, who went 10-4 during that stretch.

Counting his last three road outings, DeRozan has scored just 23, 22, and 18 points.

And chronicling his 61 games this season, DeRozan connected on zero or one 3-pointer 50 different times — a whopping occurrence rate of 82.0 percent. Bottom line: It’s hard to routinely flirt with 30 points, without the help of 3-point proficiency.

Put it all together, and this pie-in-the-sky prop reads like an easy victory for the Under crowd.

Oklahoma City Thunder: PG Shai Gilgeous-Alexander

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander #2 of the Oklahoma City Thunder reacts during the second half of the NBA game at Footprint Center on December 23, 2021 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Suns defeated the Thunder 113-101.
Image Credit: Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The Prop: 42.5 points/rebounds/assists (at Minnesota)
The Odds: Over -125/Under -110

Say hello to the white-hot Gilgeous-Alexander, who’s averaging 33.3 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 7.7 assists since returning from injury on Feb. 24.

For this seven-game stretch, Gilgeous-Alexander averaged 47.3 PRA credits and cleared tonight’s 42.5 total five separate times (55, 48, 45, 54, and 49).

Counting his last eight road outings, SGA racked up 43-plus PRA credits five times and averaged 42.1 PRAs. Technically, that’s lower than Wednesday’s total of 42.5 … but it also includes one 23-PRA outlier from a 22-point loss to the Spurs (Jan. 19).

Speaking of blowouts, the rebuilding Thunder’s last five defeats all had a double-digit margin. But that didn’t stop Gilgeous-Alexander from dominating the fantasy world, averaging 48.2 PRA credits.

Fatigue shouldn’t be a major deterrent for the 23-year-old SGA. Charting the last three times he played on the tail end of back-to-back nights, the Kentucky product averaged 31.3 points, 7.3 rebounds, and 6.0 assists.

In other words, don’t expect the Timberwolves (NBA’s 10th-worst scoring defense) to grind Gilgeous-Alexander’s output to a screeching halt.

Dallas Mavericks: PG Luka Doncic

Luka Doncic #77 of the Dallas Mavericks reacts after a foul call in the second half against the Oklahoma City Thunder at American Airlines Center on January 17, 2022 in Dallas, Texas.
Image Credit: Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images

The Prop: 9.5 rebounds (vs. N.Y. Knicks)
The Odds: Over -105/Under -130

There’s tangible optimism with tonight’s Over, despite the strong odds leaning to the Under.

For starters, Doncic has averaged 11.5 rebounds over his last eight games; and for this period, the perennial MVP candidate collected double-digit boards six times (15, 10, 15, 11, 10, and 16).

Citing his 10 previous encounters with Eastern Conference opponents, Doncic cleared Wednesday’s 9.5 total seven times; and that includes 11 boards against the Knicks on Jan. 12.

And tracking his last seven home games, Luka boasts supreme averages of 11.4 rebounds.

Regarding the Under, here’s something to consider:

The Knicks have yielded the 11th-fewest rebounds to the opposition this season (44.0 per game). They’ve also been stingy with offensive rebounds, allowing only 9.3 per contest (2nd in NBA).

The Mavericks, who last played Monday, will wrap a three-game homestand tonight. Doncic has averaged 38.1 minutes over his last 10 outings.

San Antonio Spurs: PG Dejounte Murray

Dejounte Murray #5 of the San Antonio Spurs in action against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center on November 05, 2021 in Orlando, Florida.
Image Credit: Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Prop: 9.5 assists (vs. Toronto)
The Odds: Over -105/Under -125

It’s always nice to call Admiral Ackbar to the NBA Props stage.

As in, IT’S A TRAP.

If the good admiral had a chance to expand on that iconic line, he might emphasize the following items:

Murray has notched the NBA’s second-most triple-doubles this season (12, trailing only Nikola Jokic).

The Spurs playmaker has averaged 10.4 assists in his last nine home outings; and for this span, Murray surpassed Wednesday’s total six times (11, 12, 11, 12, 10, and 14 dimes).

Chronicling his last 13 encounters with Eastern Conference foes, Murray rolled for double-digit assists 10 times; and two of the near-misses involved nine assists.

The Raptors have yielded the 11th-most assists this season (25.0 per game), and Murray has logged at least 34 minutes in eight consecutive games — including Monday’s home victory over the Lakers.

The only downside, relative to the Over:

Charting Toronto’s last six games, the opposing team’s best playmaker tallied 10 or more assists only twice (10 from Darius Garland, and 11 from Trae Young).

Utah Jazz: SG/SF Donovan Mitchell

Donovan Mitchell #45 of the Utah Jazz reacts after a play during the second quarter against the Los Angeles Lakers at Arena on February 16, 2022 in Los Angeles, California.
Image Credit: Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images

The Prop: 3.5 made 3-pointers (vs. Portland)
The Odds: Over +105/Under -135

Let’s end with an ambitious prop that leans heavily toward the Under, but could be absolute gold for Over bettors. Here’s why:

Mitchell has buried four or more triples in seven of his last 10 games (4, 5, 5, 7, 6, 4, and 4 makes). For this stretch, the Louisville product shot 39.4 percent from beyond the arc (43 of 109).

Charting his last 17 games, Mitchell attempted eight or more 3-pointers 16 times.

Mitchell has eclipsed Wednesday’s 3.5 total four times in his last six home games — going 27 of 59 from long distance over that stretch (45.8%).

For the season, the Blazers have allowed the third-most 3-pointers (13.7 per game). Opponents also have the second-highest proficiency from beyond the arc (37.0%). Last year against Portland, Mitchell cumulatively drained 5 of 18 triples over two games (4 for 10, 1 for 8).

Of course, with the Jazz being 18-point favorites against the Damian Lillard-less Blazers, could that be a drag on Mitchell’s playing time?

Most likely not. Chronicling Utah’s last eight double-digit victories, Mitchell logged 32-plus minutes seven times. Also, the Jazz were idle Tuesday night.