NBA Props for Tonight (4/8): Jumping on Jalen Green

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We have a nine-game Friday NBA slate lined up this evening, and we’re bringing you two NBA props for tonight.

The Houston Rockets are heading north of the border to face the Toronto Raptors — tip-off is at 7:30 PM ET. Rockets rookie Jalen Green has been a flamethrower lately despite the team’s tanking efforts. The Rockets don’t care about winning at all; Houston only cares about developing their potential future superstar, so Green should continue to see sky-high usage tonight.

Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Lakers are taking on the Oklahoma City Thunder — this one tips off at 10:30 PM ET. With LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and Russell Westbrook shut down for the last few games of the season, that leaves a collection of role players to carry a heavy workload this evening. Among these role players is Malik Monk, who sportsbooks seem to overvalue heading into tonight’s action.

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NBA Props for Tonight (4/8)

Jalen Green Over 3.5 Threes Made (-120 @ Caesars)

Jalen Green is in the midst of an incredible finish to his first season in the NBA. The Rockets have given the rookie the keys to the offense, and he’s seemingly had free reign to take as many shots as humanly possible over the last two weeks.

The 2nd-overall pick in the 2021 NBA Draft is top ten in points per game over his last seven contests. During the same stretch, he trails only Klay Thompson in threes made and attempted. Needless to say, the scoring volume is readily available for Houston’s franchise piece.

Jalen Green's Game Log over his Last 7 Games
Jalen Green’s Game Log over his Last 7 Games.

The 20-year-old is averaging a ridiculous 5.3 made threes per game during this 7-game heater. His 11.7 attempts in 36.1 minutes per game also show that Green’s proficiency from outside is sustainable.

The 6’4″ guard has benefitted quite a bit from the absence of Houston’s high-usage veterans, too. Christian WoodEric Gordon, and Dennis Schroder remain out due to the team’s desire to improve their draft stock. Gordon is really the key absence here, but Wood and Schroder help this pick out as well.

  • with Eric Gordon: 30.6 MPG, 14.8 PPG, 1.8 3PM, 6.2 3PA, 22.9% Usage Rate
  • without Eric Gordon: 34.0 MPG, 21.7 PPG, 3.4 3PM, 8.2 3PA, 25.0% Usage Rate

As shown above, Green’s splits without Eric Gordon in his young career show a sizable increase in usage across the board. This bodes extraordinarily well for his three-point shooting prospects tonight.

Matchup

The Toronto Raptors shouldn’t scare us off of Green’s over on threes in this matchup. Toronto has some long, athletic defenders that may disrupt Green on his drives, but their three-point defense on the team is not to be feared. The Raps rank 16th in three-point makes and attempts allowed, and 18th in 3P% allowed.

Green went 3/6 from deep last time out against Toronto, and that was with Wood active. Expect 10-plus attempts from deep for the rookie this evening, as he looks for his 8th consecutive game knocking down at least four threes.

Malik Monk Under 5.5 Assists (-130 @ FanDuel)

Malik Monk may be the most talented player on a Los Angeles Lakers roster that looks absolutely pathetic, as presently constitued. Los Angeles has shut down LeBron JamesAnthony Davis, and Russell Westbrook, which leaves Monk and Talen Horton-Tucker as the team’s top two offensive options.

Despite a certain increase in his ball-handling duties, a six-assist performance is a lot to ask of Monk. The 5th-year guard has never been a natural playmaker at the NBA level. He’s finished with at least six assists in just 7 of 74 games this season. In 307 career games, Monk has only notched the over on this number 12 times.

Obviously, the Lakers swingman will be in a different role tonight than he’s usually operated in, but we do have a career 96.1% hit rate on our side. Even if we adjust for an increase in playing time, Monk averages just 3.7 assists per 36 minutes this season and 3.6 AST per 36 for his career.

The Absence of LeBron & AD

Monk has appeared in five games without LeBron and Anthony Davis this season. He didn’t top the 4-assist mark in any of these games.

Malik Monk's Game Log without James and Davis this season.
Malik Monk’s Game Log without James and Davis this season.

Last night’s loss to the Warriors is included in this sample, where the Kentucky product finished with 4 dimes on 8 potential assists. Monk’s Lakers teammates have a 51.8% conversion rate on his feeds this season, as he averages 2.9 APG on 5.6 potential assists.

Now, consider that Monk will primarily be dishing to Horton-Tucker, Stanley JohnsonAustin Reaves, and Dwight Howard this evening. There’s not a whole lot of offensive talent among this group and it features some abhorrent shooting, too. Monk would likely need a hard minimum of 10 potential assists, and likely as many as 12 to hit this over. He had just 8 in 37 minutes of action with the same lineup yesterday, so don’t expect him to evolve into a playmaking maestro tonight.

Conclusion

Jalen Green is looking to extend his 7-game streak of games with four-plus threes tonight, while Malik Monk is playing with a Lakers lineup that’s playing for nothing right now. Green is likely to see plenty of looks from outside, while Monk is unlikely to see the playmaking load needed to approach a career-high assist mark.

Enjoy playing these NBA Props for tonight and join us for the rest of the NBA season!

Author: Penny Cox