Nba player

Target Paul George, Kevin Durant and more for Tuesday’s playoffs (April 12)

Playoffs, baby!

Uh, uh, well… the playoffs, at least.

We’ve waited all season for this, and the playoffs are finally here. It’s not quite the winner yet, but the winners enter the playoff bracket in Tuesday night’s games between the No. 7 and No. 8 seeds in each conference.

When the stakes are this high, it means spins are shortened and stars get more minutes and more usage than ever before. This means, finally, it’s time to play props on the best players in the game. Let’s dive into it.

NBA Players’ Accessories and Picks

Kevin Durant, CA Over 3.5 (-105)

Horsemen against nets Nets -8.5
Time | TV 7 p.m. ET | DTT
best book BetMGM

If Kevin Durant hadn’t missed nearly two months midway through the season, the Nets would never be playing in that play-in game. Brooklyn was a lousy 8-19 without KD with 12 of those double-digit losses.

But ever since Durant returned on March 3 and joined his new Brooklyn teammates, he’s played like the MVP contender everyone’s been waiting for. KD’s numbers since his return have been impressive. He’s averaging 31.1 points, 7.4 rebounds and 7.5 assists per game, and he’s shooting 52/40/94 on that streak with 2.5 3s and 7.6 free throws per game.

When we last saw Durant in the playoffs, he was playing like the best player in the world before half a shoe size kept him from potentially knocking out the team that won the NBA championship. That Durant is back, and he’s doing more than ever for the Nets.

Durant’s 6.4 APGs this year is a career high, and it’s even further down the streak, including a career-best 16 cents in the regular-season finale. But with great power comes great responsibility, and all that extra manipulation has also seen Durant’s turnovers increase.

Since returning March 3, Durant has averaged 4.4 turnovers per game. It would also be well above his career high for a season, and means he has topped 3.5 turnovers in 14 of those last 19 games, hitting more than 74% of the time. That includes five turnovers last Friday night against these Cavs.

Durant plays massive minutes and does everything for Brooklyn. He will surely have a big game. But he’s also going to have some turnovers along the way, so get the upper hand here at nearly even odds or down to -140.

Karl-Anthony Towns, more than 3.5 assists (+120)

Clippers vs. Timberwolves Timber Wolves -3
Time | TV 9:30 p.m. ET | DTT
best book DraftKings

It’s understatedly one of the greatest games in Minnesota Timberwolves franchise history. A win to make the playoffs here would easily rank among Wolves’ top five wins of all time.

This team is good and they believe in themselves, especially in attack. And they are right to believe. As of Jan. 5 (Towns and D’Angelo Russell missed the first two games of 2022), Wolves have the NBA’s best offensive rating at 118.7. They lead the league in 3-pointers and are second in free throws, and they’re scoring a whopping 122.2 PPG during that streak, nearly three points ahead of the second-highest scoring team.

At the heart of this attack is Karl-Anthony Towns, the superstar of this team. Chris Finch unlocked Towns and KAT is the centerpiece that makes everything else work. His numbers have actually dropped slightly this year, but that’s because Towns is doing more with less, scoring more efficiently and elevating his teammates.

Towns has struggled to score against the Clippers this season, but his assist numbers have been solid. He’s averaging 3.7 APG in 2022 and has three cents or more in 75% of his games in 2022. That puts us one pass from that line, and he’s passed it in 19 of 44. That’s only a 43% success rate, but we get +120 which implies 45%.

But don’t forget the other part of the equation: minutes. Towns has averaged just 32.8 minutes per game in 2022, but in a game of this caliber he should see around 38-40 minutes. Those 20% extra minutes are more than enough to cover our gap and get us to our number, and more.

If you want to go crazy you can play for Towns massive passing game at +1225 for seven assists or +4000 for double digits on Bet365. He has eight games with seven or more assists. That’s a bit too far for me, but I’ll play for at least four cents at any positive number.

Paul George, more than 6.5 rebounds (-138) | Over 9.5 rebounds (+350)

It’s lunch time for Paul George.

George hadn’t played for a few days before Christmas until he finally got back on a basketball court in late March, and he pretty much picked up where he left off. The scoring is down a touch to 22.6 PPG, but George is hitting 53% of his 3 since returning and also racking up 6.8 assists per game.

But in this particular game, the Clippers will need PG to hit the glass.

The Clippers have really struggled to rebound this season, and Minnesota has exceptional rebounds in Towns and Jarred Vanderbilt. The Clippers also like to play small and might choose to do so at times to stretch Wolves, which makes rebounding all the more important. Minnesota can win this game by dominating the glass – that’s literally a huge advantage.

Last year in the playoffs, however, George got ahead as a rebounder. Remember when the Clippers played all those games with tons of smallball minutes? They got away with it because PG played so big. He averaged 9.6 rebounds per game in the playoffs and had double-digit boards in nine of Los Angeles’ 19 playoff games.

George is at 6.9 rebounds per game on the season, already above that number despite injuries and limited minutes at times, but you can throw those numbers away. He’s the Clippers’ superstar and he’ll see big minutes here, which means the Clippers will need him to bounce back.

At least seven rebounds feel like a gift to me — George did it in 14 of 19 playoff games (74%) last year and was one board in three others — but I want to play for double-digit boards too. You might think that means playing double-doubles, but that boils down to just +225, as that number also has to factor in the possibility of double-digit assists.

Instead, I’m going to just focus on rebounds and play a much better number at +350. That’s an implied 22% and George hit it in 47% of his playoff games last year. And if you have Bet365, you can play more than 10 tables at +390 there.

Be sure to play the rebounds above 6.5, but also consider sprinkling a bit of your bet on that top line.

Bets on bonus NBA props

  • Bruce Brown, over 13.5 points (+100 DraftKings): The Nets are all about Durant and Kyrie these days, but Brown has established himself as the third-best Net and has found his minutes tied to KD. He does all the dirty work for this team, and with minutes and so much focus on the two superstars, he tends to find easy buckets along the way. Since Durant’s return on March 3, Brown has averaged 15.1 PPG for those new-look nets, topping that line in 12 of 18 games (67%). That includes 10/18/8 against Cleveland on Friday.
  • Darius Garland, over 25.5 points (-110 DraftKings): Garland has been a superstar since the All-Star Break, averaging 25.5 points and 10.1 assists per game with at least 24 points in 75% of those games. It already cranks out 39 MPG so there’s not much room for upside, but there’s a different angle here. The Cavs have lost 13 of those games and Garland has over 25.5 points in 11 of 13 losses. When the Cavs are trailing, Garland needs to score a bit more to keep them. If you think Cleveland is losing — and they are huge dogs — play the points. If you like the Cavs, know that Garland has had double-digit assists in every win at Cleveland since the break.