NBA picks: Why Pacers, Jazz are among Thursday's best bets, plus a D'Angelo Russell prop


Four games will make up Thursday’s NBA slate. We have our eye on one upset, a spread pick, and one plus-money prop ahead of the action. Are you looking to find an edge? We’ve gone over each pairing to identify a moneyline, spread, and player pick worth considering.

Tyrese Haliburton’s minutes restriction could make this game interesting. The point guard sat for the whole fourth quarter during a close game with the Boston Celtics his last time out and there’s been no indication that he’ll be given a larger workload soon. However, Indiana should take advantage of Pascal Siakam’s matchup against the Julius Randle-less Knicks in this matchup. OG Anunoby’s status is also up in the air, so Indiana has a real chance to challenge a weakened New York team that it beat by 14 points in December. Going toe-to-toe with the Eastern Conference’s best team is no small feat. Bettors should be wary of Haliburton’s status, as he’s listed as questionable for now.

Joel Embiid has been ruled out and Tyrese Maxey is in danger of missing his fourth straight contest with an ankle sprain. The 76ers are an abysmal 3-9 straight up without Embiid. None of their nine defeats in those matchups were by less than six points. Philadelphia’s chances will be significantly slimmer without Maxey in the mix, Utah’s length and scoring in the backcourt give them a great shot at covering here. 

Player prop: D’Angelo Russell to record a double-double (+225)

LeBron James and Anthony Davis won’t play against the Boston Celtics, so much of the of Los Angeles Lakers’ offense will run through Russell. The point guard is fresh off his best month of the season and has thrived as his team’s primary playmaker. Russell is averaging 21.2 points and 9.4 rebounds through five games without James this season. He notched a double-double in three of those contests without falling short of 17 points and eight assists. Boston’s defense will test him, but the odds here are too good to not take a flier.

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