NBA 2021: Best bets for blockbuster games on opening night

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Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant and and LA Lakers legend Lebron James.
Kevin Durant's Brooklyn Nets and Lebron James' LA Lakers take to the court on opening night.

The NBA is back and this year, I’m talking about my best bets right here on Yahoo. 

Opening night provides us with some high quality matchups, so let’s dig into the value.

Brooklyn Nets @ Milwaukee Bucks

The reigning champs get to present their rings in front of this season’s favourites, the Nets, who are without Kyrie Irving for now and the foreseeable future. 

Milwaukee has a few injury concerns as well with no Donte DiVincenzo, Bobby Portis, Semi Ojeleye, or Rodney Hood.

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Often, opening night basketball can get a little sloppy with some poor shooting performances as nerves and rust get shaken off, so I was surprised to see a line of 236.5 set for this game.

It has since come into 233.5, but I think we are going under that.

Best bet: Total Points - Under 233.5

In terms of player props, you can find Khris Middleton for under 21.5 points ($1.97 at Sportsbet) and my projections have him under that number by a decent amount, so that value likes nice, while Giannis Antetokounmpo’s over/under for assists is set at just 4.5 assists. 

The value isn’t as big ($1.77 at Ladbrokes), but Giannis should hit that over, maybe even posting 6+ dimes.

Best bet: Player Points - Khris Middleton under 21.5 points

Best bet: Player Assists - Giannis Antetokounmpo over 4.5 assists

Golden State Warriors @ Los Angeles Lakers 114-110

Next, we get to see the new look Lakers, hosting the Warriors. 

The Warriors will be without Klay Thompson and James Wiseman, while Los Angeles is without Trevor Ariza, Talen Horton-Tucker, Wayne Ellington, and perhaps Kendrick Nunn, who is questionable. 

The Warriors are also going to be limiting Draymond Green and Andrew Wiggins’ minutes, allegedly, due to conditioning.

The line in this game keeps veering from Lakers -3 to -3.5, but that doesn’t matter. I think the Warriors can cover pretty easily and I think Golden State wins outright.

Rajon Rondo and Russell Westbrook, pictured here in action for the Los Angeles Lakers.
Rajon Rondo and Russell Westbrook in action for the Los Angeles Lakers. (Photo by Jevone Moore/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

They are paying $2.32 at Sportsbet right now, which looks the goods to me, but if you aren’t as confident, the Warriors +3.5 is a more secure bet.

Best bet: Handicap Betting - Golden State Warriors +3.5

The Russell Westbrook assist line is one to watch for me. You can find it at 9.5 on Ladbrokes, but it has come into 8.5 on Sportsbet. 

The under 9.5 for $1.77 is an easy play, but I would be tempted to look at Sportbet's under 8.5 for $1.99 too. 

To play it safe, let’s take the extra assist and go under.

Best bet: Player Assists - Russell Westbrook under 9.5 assists

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