Great start to NBA Punters daily tipping on opening day as we hit on our best bet and our bonus tip to start the season perfect. Thursday (AEDT) in the NBA offers a monster 11 game slate so it should be a bit easier to find some value as we offer our best bet and some bonus tips for the days action below!
Best Bet Wedneday October 17th
Milwaukee Bucks at Charlotte Hornets
Spectrum Centre – 7pm ET
Our best bet for Thursday will come from the 10am game which sees the Bucks travelling to Charlotte to take on the Hornets. The Bucks were heartbreakingly bounced from the 2018 playoffs in seven games by the Boston Celtics and although it was a disappointing end to the season, there were signs that they are ready to take the next step in 2018-19.
Giannis Antetokounmpo is another year older with another pre-season under his belt while Khris Middleton had a coming out party in the playoffs last season, averaging over 24 points in the seven-game series against the Celtics.
The Bucks waved goodbye to Jabari Parker in the offseason but add some key pieces that will improve their depth particularly in the front-court. Brook Lopez was one of the most underrated signings of the off-season and in a contract year, he’ll be super keen to impress to possibly land one more long(ish)-term contract. Ersan Illyasova was also a big off-season signing for the Bucks, and along with Lopez should add valuable floor spacing which is crucial for Giannis to go to work in the paint.
The Bucks have won five of their last six games against the Hornets and were fantastic in the pre-season, racking up double digit wins in three of their four games. The Hornets will run largely the same core that has made them a sub .500 team over the past few years with some role-playing additions.
The Hornets, interestingly, had a much better record against Western Conference teams in 2017-18 than they did against the East. They were just 22-30 against Eastern Conference teams and 7-11 against Central Division teams. We think the Bucks are ready to go in 2018-19 and represent great value on Thursday morning away from home.
Milwaukee Bucks –2 – $1.91 at Sportsbet
Phoenix Suns rookie DeAndre Ayton was a monster in limited minutes in the pre-season. Through five pre-season games including one against NBL team the New Zealand Breakers, Ayton played exactly 27 minutes per game and averaged 9.8 rebounds per game. Convert those numbers to per 36 minutes and Ayton would be averaging just over 12 boards per game. With the Suns set to focus largely on the development of their youngsters this season, we think that Ayton will average around 32-34 minutes per game and be a monster on the boards.
DeAndre Ayton OVER 9.5 Rebounds – $1.91 at BetEasy
Our last bet of the day comes from the Southeast Divisional matchup between the Miami Heat and Orlando Magic. We saw Heat centre Hassan Whiteside fall heavily out of favour with coach Erik Spoelstra in Miami’s five game playoff series against the 76ers last season. In that series, Whiteside played just over 15 minutes per game and averaged just 5 points.
Kelly Olynyk, who added much needed floor spacing, was the preferred big man in the series and Whiteside only cleared the 14.5 point line twice in his last twelve games of the season last year. Orlando have the option to play small ball with the likes of Aaron Gordon and Nikola Vucevic stretching the floor, so Whiteside could have limited impact in the season opener. Averaged just 11.6 in his last three against the Magic.
Hassan Whiteside UNDER 14.5 points – $1.91 at Sportsbet