NBA All Star Props
We weren’t sure if we were going to get an all-star weekend this year but on February 18th commissioner Adam Silver announced that the all-star game would be held in Atlanta on March 7th with the skills challenge & 3pt contest being performed pre game and the slam dunk contest at halftime of the all-star game. There of course will be no fans in attendance due the COVID-19 pandemic but we’ll still be able to wager on all these events and watch them live on TV. The Odds on these events are all over the place depending on which sportsbook you use but for this article Tyler’s going to be using lines from FanDuel Sportsbook & DraftKings. Now let’s dive into all of all-star weekend’s events and see where he will be placing his wagers this weekend.
We’ll just follow the tv schedule in this article so we’ll be starting our night off with the Taco Bell Skills Challenge. Our participants in this year’s event consists of Chris Paul (+230), Luka Doncic (+250), Julius Randle (+480), Nikola Vucevic (+600), Domantas Sabonis (+700) & Robert Covington (+950). The only two guards in this contest of course carry the lowest odds but past results in this contest show the big men have handled this contest better than the guards. Of the 16 semi-finalist over the last 4 years only 5 of them have been point guards with only two of the 5 advancing to the finals and 1 of them winning (S.Dinwiddie 2018). So even though CP3 & Luka will have the obvious speed advantage against the rest of field but at these low odds and due the history of the event I’m scratching them both off my board. Now looking at the rest of the guys this will be the second event for both Sabonis & Vucevic with Sabonis finishing as the runner up last year and Vucevic losing in 2019 to Jokic in the quarterfinals. This will be Randle and Covington’s first appearance in this event. Sabonis barley lost this event last year with bam hitting the winning 3 just before Sabonis sunk his and I believe he will be out to get the trophy that barley eluded him last year in this event and getting him at +700 is pretty hard to pass up here.
Next up we have the Mountain Dew 3pt Contest which for the first time in NBA history where all contestants participating are also NBA All-Stars. The Field consists of Stephen Curry (+160), Zach Lavine (+390), Mike Conley (+480), Donovan Mitchell (+550), Jaylen Brown (+700), & Jayson Tatum (+700). We had Devin Booker pull out due to a knee injury and he was replaced by Mike Conley who will also replace Booker in the all-star game. Now it’s only right the greatest 3pt shooter in NBA history is the favorite here at +160 and this will be his 7th appearance with his lone win coming in 2014. The only other player to compete in this contest before is Zach Lavine who made his 1st appearance last year where he failed to make the final round. Of all the 1st year participants I’m going to scratch off Tatum 1st as he’s been in a slump from 3 (29% from 3pt range over last 10 games). His teammate Jaylen brown is shooting slightly better at 34% in the same span. Now we look at the two Utah guys here, Mitchell is hitting at 32% from deep while Conley (Only played 7 games in the entire month of February) is hitting at a ridiculous 47% from deep in that span. That leaves us with Lavine & Curry, Curry is hitting at around 37% and taking the most 3’s per game (13) of all the participants. Lavine is taking almost 8 threes per game and he’s hitting at a ridiculous 46%. Now these stats don’t mean too much as shooting off the rack is nowhere near the same as shooting in game but it gives us an idea of who should have a very good chance at catching fire early in this contest. The obvious pick here is of course Curry who has the experience shooting off the rack and having won the contest once before but what fun is it taking the favorite at +160 in these contests? With that being said we’re going to roll with our guy Zach Lavine at +3900 to win it this year. He’s been red hot from 3 lately, shot off the racks last year so has some experience in this setting and even though he didn’t make it out of the 1st round last year he posted a score of 23 which in most years would have gotten him to the final round. I think he comes out this year on fire advances to the final round and takes home the trophy this year and cashes us a +390 ticket.
Even though it doesn’t start until halftime of the all-star game we’ll talk about the slam dunk contest before we talk about the actual game. This year there will only be 3 contestants the favorite being Cassius Stanley (+100) followed by Trail Blazers guard Anfernee Simon (+225) & Knicks rookie Obi Toppin (+250). When these odds first released Stanley was as high as +190 in places but odds have shifted heavily in his favor over the last few days and it’s understandable. Stanley showed his insane leaping ability in college but hasn’t had much of an opportunity to show it in the NBA as he’s only played in 8 games. Simons line opened around +175 and there wasn’t a chance I would touch him at those odds since then his odds have fell all the way to +225 and I believe people are sleeping on this kid. He recorded a max vertical of almost 42 inches (two inches less than Stanley’s 44-inch vert) at his combine and that was almost 3 years ago when Simon was only 19 years old. There are videos form Blazers practices this year showing defending slam dunk contest Derrick Jones JR touching above the inner square on the backboard which stands at about 11 ½ feet tall. We then see coaches get Simon to attempt to match where Jones touches and he pretty much touches the exact same spot maybe even a bit higher. At +225 in a three-man contest with hops that are similar to former champ Jones JR I’m not going to lock a pick in yet but there is some value on Simon here. Now that brings us to our final contestant Knicks rookie Obi Toppin. He opened as the favorite in this contest at +150 but would soon be passed up Stanley as the favorite while his odds dropped from +150 to +250. He is the biggest of the three competitors coming in at 6’9 with a 7’2 wingspan. His explosiveness off two feet is astounding and with his wingspan coming in over 7 feet his catch radius on alley oops is actually insane. There are times where the pass looks like its going to sail out of bounds before Toppin fly’s through the air like a pterodactyl in Jurassic Park and slams it down with authority. He’s the first rookie for the Knicks to participate in the slam dunk contest since Nate Robinson in 2005, he won the contest that year. Favorites in this contest never seem to get the job done with four of the last five favorite not winning the contest (Gordon 2020/2017, Smith JR 2019/2018). The last favorite to win it happen to be Zach Lavine in 2016 when he came into the contest as a -300 favorite and delivered one of the best dunk contests in NBA history. With that being said Simon at +225 intrigues me but ill be rolling with Obi Toppin at +250. His versatility and just being bigger than both the other competitors he should have more variations in his dunks. He’s supposed to be the Knicks big rookie coming out of this draft and in their 1st year they’ve been competitive since 2012 it’s only right he wins this contest. We have also seen big underdogs win this contest outright 2 of the last 4 years (Robinson +750 in 2017 & H.Diallo +325 in 2019). Depending on how much you are willingly to bet on this event I wouldn’t even mind taking both Toppin & Simon for a unit a piece basically fading Stanley as long as he doesn’t win you either net 1.25 or 1.50 units.
Last on our all-star agenda we have the actual all-star game between Team Lebron (-3.5) & Team Durant. The total in this game of course sits at 309.5 since we usually don’t see much defense in these games. The starters for Team Lebron are Doncic, Giannis, Lebron, Jokic & Curry while Team Durant sends out Irving, Beal, Tatum, Kawhi & Embiid as Durant is out with an injury. Now I know these all these guys are all-stars Team Lebron’s starting lineup is STACKED! 3 former MVP’s and two future MVP candidates for the next 5 years barring injury. I typically don’t get too involved in this game but of course FanDuel had to post player props to pull me in. The one that stuck out to me was Kawhi at 15.5 -105. He’s scored 30,19,4, & 17 in his last 4 all-star games. Now as for a side and total I’ll be taking Team Lebron here and the over 309.5 as the last 7 all star games have cleared this total and this roster Lebron assembled this year is unfair. Now as for the MVP for the game we had to shift over to DraftKings to get odds here but il be taking Giannis here at +650 since he’ll be in a lineup consisting of some of the best playmakers in the league, he should be catching lobs all game if he posts a stat line something like 24,12,4 and Team Lebron gets the job done I think we got a good chance to cash here.
With all that being said that’s going to be my breakdown of this impromptu all-star weekend the NBA threw together last month. These events are all for fun so don’t go betting your bankroll on anything this weekend be responsible with your bets and we’ll be back Wednesday night as we go into the second half the NBA season! Hope you guys enjoyed this article all the bets for this weekend are posted below see you guys Wednesday afternoon for our normal NBA Rundown!
Skills Challenge: Domantas Sabonis +700
3pt Contest: Zach Lavine +390
Dunk Contest : Obi Toppin +250
All-Star Game: Team Lebron -3.5 -110 & Over 309.5 -110
Specials: Kawhi Over 15.5 Pts -105 & Giannis MVP +650