I am 9-8 in my last 17 prop selections, and I intend on widening that winning margin in our player props & NBA picks tonight. My preview inside.
Jeff Teague O/U 17.5 points
If the Hawks want to close out this series tonight on the road, they need their star players to step up. While the Hawks have a collection of great players and no true star, what they really need is for Jeff Teague to act like a star. Teague is a good point guard, but he is far from one of the best in the league. He had his best season a year ago when the Hawks made it to the Eastern Conference Finals, and if they want to make it back there, the Hawks need Teague to be a consistent 20 points per game.
Teague has been close to that in this series. In just 22 minutes in Game 5 he scored 16 points, and with the exception of Games 2 and 4, he has been a formidable foe for the Celtics in this series. Despite the fact that Boston was one of the better point guard defenses in the league this season, at the pace this game should be played at, I expect Teague to get a lot of shots in this one.
The Hawks have shot the ball 196 times in their last two games and Teague should get at least 18 of those shots. He is averaging only 13.8 shot attempts per game in this series, but to win SU as road on the NBA odds, they are going to need their best guard to step up, and I think he will.
The Pick: OVER 17.5 (-125)
Jonas Jerebko O/U 16.5 points and rebounds
Since entering the starting lineup in Game 3, Jonas Jerebko has played very well. His energy and rebounding have been crucial for the Celtics, and even though Boston didn't show up in Game 5, Jerebko was well on his way to another double-double if the game had stayed close. He has totaled 30 rebounds in his last three games, and his per-26 numbers so far in this series are 11.7 points and 11.2 rebounds.
For his total of 16.5 points and rebounds tonight, as long as he is still starting, and as long as he plays into the 30s in minutes, I see no reason why he can't go over this prop. Even more so than Teague, who has been up and down this series, this is probably my best prop pick of the night. Jerebko is a bad matchup for Paul Millsap because he is much taller and lengthier, and even though Millsap is a solid defender, Jerebko can shoot over him with ease.
Jerebko is shooting less than 30 percent from the three-point line in this series, but if he can knock down a couple shots behind the arc, he is going over on this NBA pick tonight.
The Pick: OVER 16.5 (-115)