ESPN’s fantasy basketball and basketball betting tips cheat sheet is your pregame destination for basketball betting predictions and our best intel and data to help you make smart fantasy and wagering decisions. NBA game odds for November 19 are provided by Caesars Sportsbook, and fantasy advice is based on ESPN 10-team leagues.
What you need to know for Saturday’s games
— Jim McCormick & Kyle Soppe
Deep Six: The Sixers suffered another key backcourt injury last night with Tyrese Maxey rolling his ankle in a win over the Bucks. Two-way guard De’Anthony Melton is a free agent in nearly 87% of ESPN leagues while ranked fourth in the league in steal percentage and likely to have rare freedom to score with Maxey ailing. Scoring guard Shake Milton took a season high 12 shots in a win over the Bucks last night and could be busy tonight against a Timberwolves team allowing nearly 54 DraftKings points per game to point guards, the third-highest clip in the league.
Magic Men: Found just ahead of Bam Adebayo, Domantas Sabonis and Evan Mobley on the Player Rater among centers, Orlando’s Bol Bol (56% available in ESPN leagues) is putting together one of the most memorable ascensions in some time. A fixture in the Magic rotation, Bol is fourth in the league in blocks per game and first in block percentage. Particularly productive lately, Bol has averaged 15.8 PPG, 10.6 RPG, 1.4 3PG, and 1.6 BPG during the last five games, all starts. With Paolo Banchero dealing with an ankle injury, Bol is poised to deliver another big line against the Pacers this evening. Orlando guard Jalen Suggs (37%) is warming up, having scored the team’s final seven points in a clutch win over Chicago last night.
Keeping Pace: Speaking of the Pacers, Jalen Smith (59% available) has nearly averaged a double-double (11.6 PPG and 9.2 RPG) during his past five games and just topped 30 minutes of action last night for the first time in November, resulting in a season-high 18 boards. Smith and rookie guard Andrew Nembhardt (99%) figure to start for Indiana and make for helpful DFS discounts during a slate that features a few high-dollar superstars such as Joel Embiid and Damian Lillard.
Microwave Malik: The Utah Jazz often look to different names in their deep rotation to step up for given stretches. Lately, scoring guard Malik Beasley (59% available) has been the team’s microwave off the pine, scoring a season-high 27 last night in a win over the Suns. Free to find his shot and likely to play around 30 minutes, Beasley is a fun streaming option and target for scoring props against the Sixers tonight.
Mr. Young: The Raptors have ruled out forwards Precious Achiuwa, Pascal Siakam, Otto Porter Jr., and Chris Boucher ahead of tonight’s game against the Hawks in Atlanta. The team will likely turn to veterans Thaddeus Young (98% available in ESPN leagues) for major playing time in the starting lineup, as the veteran has topped 26 minutes in three straight and can help fantasy streamers looking for rebounds and steals. Young, after all, has averaged 11 PPG, 6.3 RPG, and 1.7 SPG during the last three games and should approach 30 minutes of run tonight.
Game of the night
Utah Jazz at Portland Trail Blazers
7:30 pm ET, Moda Center, Portland
Line: Blazers -4
Money line: Jazz (+143), Blazers (-170)
Total: 228.5 points
Best bet: Jazz +4
Utah is coming off of an impressive win over the Suns in overtime on Friday night. While the Jazz may not win against the Trail Blazers outright, I think they’ll play well enough to keep the game close. Utah ranks fourth in points scored per 100 possessions and fourth in offensive rebounding. Additionally, the Jazz rank seventh in 3-point percentage. Although Utah is a tough team to beat, the Trail Blazers aren’t slouches either. The Trail Blazers play at a much slower pace than the Jazz and rank sixth in points allowed per 100 possessions. Utah’s advantage in this game will be defending the perimeter, which will be critical when containing Damian Lillard and Anfernee Simons. When the Jazz score more than 107.7 points, they are 10-4 against the spread. This season, the Trail Blazers allowed opponents to score 107.6 points per game. — Eric Moody
Breaking down the rest of the slate
Toronto Raptors at Atlanta Hawks
6 pm ET, State Farm Arena, Atlanta
Line: Hawks -5.5
Money line: Raptors (+175), Hawks (-210)
Total: 226 points
Best bet: Over 226
It just makes sense to bet on the over. In terms of points scored per 100 possessions, the Raptors are 12th and the Hawks are 19th, though Trae Young and Dejounte Murray are capable of scoring plenty of points. The total has gone over in nine of Atlanta’s last 13 games. Further, four of the last five games between the Raptors and Hawks in Atlanta have gone over. — Moody
Fantasy streamer: De’Andre Hunter (rostered in 16.5% of ESPN leagues) is a great streamer in point formats. He has averaged 19.9 fantasy points in 30.2 MPG. Despite scoring double figures in all 14 games for Atlanta, Hunter has yet to exceed six boards, four assists or one steal. He’s not the best option in category formats. — Moody
Orlando Magic at Indiana Pacers
7 pm ET, Gainbridge Fieldhouse, Indianapolis
Line: Pacers -6.5
Money line: Magic (+205), Pacers (-250)
Total: 223.5 points
Best bet: Pacers -6.5
Benedict Mathurin and Tyrese Haliburton have paced the Pacers’ offense so far. Indiana has ranked 11th in points scored per 100 possessions. The situation isn’t quite as rosy on defense. In terms of points allowed per 100 possessions, the Pacers rank 20th. There hasn’t been much offensive production from the Magic this season, and the team may be without dynamic rookie Paolo Banchero. Orlando ranks 22nd in points scored per 100 possessions this season and has not been strong on defense. The Pacers have a 7-1 record against the spread when scoring more than 112.9 points. — Moody
Fantasy streamer: Chuma Okeke (rostered in 1.1% of ESPN leagues) is firmly on the streaming radar if Banchero is ruled out once again due to an ankle injury. He is capable of accumulating stats in many different categories. Okeke has scored 21 or more fantasy points in three of his last four games. — Moody
San Antonio Spurs at LA Clippers
10:30 pm ET, crypto Arena, Los Angeles
Line: Clippers -9
Money line: Spurs (+310), Clippers (-400)
Total: 221 points
Questionable: Jakob Poeltl
Best bet: Under 221
The Clippers are the superior team. Los Angeles ranks 30th in points scored per 100 possessions but is very strong defensively. In terms of points allowed per 100 possessions, the Clippers rank second. The totals have gone under in seven of Los Angeles’ last eight home games. The Spurs have only scored more than 112 points in six games this season and ranks 25th in points scored per 100 possessions. — Moody