The dust has settled from a busy trade deadline that lacked superstar names but still moved the needle quite a bit. Now we turn our attention to a somewhat limited Friday night. As players go through physicals and press conferences, there’s some uncertainty as to who will be active for some of these teams. We’ll try to navigate that as we put together a Friday night parlay, which might include some of the best NBA player props for Feb. 9.
Take Sixers as They Play for Pride
Philadelphia is reeling without Joel Embiid, losing three straight to start their four-game homestand. The margin of defeat in those three games is 18.0 points, so they’re nowhere near where they need to be to beat the NBA spreads.
While Embiid eyes a late-season return, the Sixers made plenty of noise at the deadline with the addition of Buddy Hield and the departure of Patrick Beverley (Kyle Lowry is a buyout target). This may not have an immediate impact as we have no clue if Hield will be active yet. Keep an eye on the NBA news for that. What it does do is provide a little bit of a shake-up for a team that probably needed one.
Tyrese Maxey has been battling an illness, but he’s had some time to recover and will just take over a game at some point. The Hawks are the type of opponent that can allow that to happen. He’s scored at least 30 points in each of his last two against Atlanta, which is 1-2 vs Philly this season.
See if you can find something on Maxey to add to the best NBA prop bets for Feb. 9.
The Hawks recently had a four-game winning streak, but they’ve notably been the worst team in the NBA against the Las Vegas NBA odds at 15-36. They’ve also lost seven of the last nine on the road, with one win coming at Washington and another at Miami when the Heat were a mess.
Sure, the Sixers are in a big slump. But getting three points from a Hawks team that’s all over the place seems pretty generous. Philly will play with some pride and urgency and, at the very least, keep this one close.
… And Expect Bucks to Swat Hornets
Milwaukee is coming off an ugly loss to the Timberwolves on the heels of an ugly road trip, adding to an ugly start to the Doc Rivers era. We’ve piled on the Bucks all season and don’t expect greatness from this group, but at some point, Giannis is going to obliterate someone and give this team a laugher.
What better time than Friday night against the Hornets? Charlotte will be without LaMelo Ball and have little left in the cupboard beyond Miles Bridges and Brandon Miller. Charlotte traded away P.J. Washington and Gordon Hayward yesterday, already shipped Terry Rozier to Miami, and Mark Williams remains sidelined (along with Ball).
This team is in a race to the lottery and it’ll have some ugly nights down the stretch. Milwaukee beat Charlotte by 31 points in the only prior encounter. Damian Lillard is uncertain for this one due to an ankle issue, but we expect a rout with him or without him.
… And Take Over in Milwaukee
One thing the Hornets have going for them is, as we mentioned, the play of Bridges and Miller. They’re putting up big numbers and should be relatively unencumbered for the rest of the season. They’ve helped Charlotte put up 118 points and 117 points in its last two games, and expect both to stuff the stat sheet in Milwaukee.
The Hornets hit the over 54% of the time, trailing only a handful of teams. One of those teams is Milwaukee, which goes over 55.8% of the time. When teams are unsettled, as is the case with both of these squads, it can often lead to run-and-gun kinda nights, and we see plenty of points going on the board in this one.
Questions Of The Day
We missed wildly on a Sacramento Kings pick on Wednesday, as they fell at home to Detroit. Now they get the Nuggets one night after Denver had to play in LA. We think rest should be a factor, or at least enough for the Kings to cover a 1½-point gap.
Looking ahead, what could impact Saturday’s NBA lines?
Look for most – if not all – of the newly acquired players to be active. That’s most notable in New York, where the Knicks host the Pacers two days after those teams shook up their rosters.