Expert NBA Best Bets and Player Props Today – Wednesday, October 25th
The 2023-24 NBA season is finally here and we’re excited over here at VSiN. As always, Jonathan Von Tobel will be providing you with his exceptional coverage of the greatest league in the world. Just click here for all of his content. However, all of my picks will be featured in this daily column, which will combine my best bets and player props. I’ll be doing this every single day of the week — although it’ll be a little shorter on the weekends. So, keep reading to find out how I’m playing the NBA slate on Wednesday, October 25. Also, check out our NBA Odds page for the latest line movement.
2023 Record: 3-1 (+1.90 units)
NBA Best Bets Today – October 25
Washington Wizards at Indiana Pacers – 7:00 pm ET
Last season, the Wizards and Pacers were in the league’s bottom 10 when it came to defensive rating. Washington didn’t do anything that suggests the team will be better on that end of the floor this season. The Wizards did draft a perimeter defender with serious potential in Bilal Coulibaly, but they’re also heavily invested in Jordan Poole as their lead guard now. That guarantees that they’ll prioritize scoring over stops. With Poole playing at least 30 minutes per night for Washington, I’d be shocked if this team isn’t one of the worst in the league in defensive efficiency this season. However, I’m also confident that the Wizards will score the basketball, even if it’s not in efficient fashion. With Poole and Kyle Kuzma as the two main guys, the desire to get up shots will be there.
As for the Pacers, they also added a defensive-minded rookie, selecting power forward Jarace Walker with the eighth pick in the draft. And they signed Bruce Brown away from the Denver Nuggets. But I don’t seem them coming in and completely changing the identity of this team. This is a group that played at the fifth fastest pace in basketball last year. They like to get out and run with Tyrese Haliburton as their point guard, and it’s hard to blame them. But overall, that style of play does welcome the possibility of a shootout more often than not. And with this specific opponent in town, I’d be surprised if this game doesn’t feature some stupid numbers in the box score.
Bet: Over 234.5 (-115 – Play to 235)
Cleveland Cavaliers at Brooklyn Nets – 7:30 pm ET
I’m high on the Cavaliers heading into this season, but I also like what the Nets have put together — even if it wasn’t by design, with the team just being in an asset accumulation phase. With Ben Simmons looking like himself in the preseason, I’m not sure there’s much standing in the way of Brooklyn being one of the better defensive teams in the league this year. In Simmons, Mikal Bridges, Cameron Johnson and Nic Claxton, the Nets have four willing defenders that can guard multiple positions. Even Spencer Dinwiddie, the team’s fifth starter, has a big body for a guard. He won’t show the effort that his teammates will, but he can very likely be hidden given the talent around him.
All of that length and defensive versatility should come in handy against a team with ball handlers like Darius Garland and Donovan Mitchell. Brooklyn will make those two work for absolutely everything. And overall, I’m not sure the Cavaliers will have much offensive success in this game. Cleveland lacked offensive juice throughout last season, and the team added former Miami sniper Max Strus to address that. But Strus isn’t a player that creates his own offense. And if Garland and Mitchell are struggling to do so themselves, the Cavaliers are going to have a hard time winning this game.
Of course, the Nets need to score enough themselves here, which won’t be easy against an elite Cavaliers defense. But the fact that this is the home opener should mean an electric crowd, which will give Brooklyn’s mediocre offense a little boost. On top of that, Cleveland really doesn’t have anybody that can guard Bridges in isolation. He averaged 26.1 points per game in 27 games with the Nets last year. I think he’ll start the year with a big performance at Barclays Center. And the absence of Jarrett Allen will also hurt Cleveland’s defense here.
Bet: Nets +1.5 (-115)
Oklahoma City Thunder at Chicago Bulls – 8:00 pm ET
This feels like a game in which the public will be heavily backing the Thunder. Oklahoma City is a team that feels like it has a real shot at breaking out in the Western Conference. Last year, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander emerged as one of the best guards in the NBA, and he helped the Thunder improbably win 40 games. Now, Oklahoma City adds Chet Holmgren to last year’s team. The rookie should have an instant two-way impact on the Thunder, and he’s a legitimate threat to win Rookie of the Year. Having said that, I do think the Bulls will be a decent team until the trade deadline, when they could opt to finally sell off some parts. So, I don’t think Oklahoma City should be expected to beat Chicago at the United Center — especially in a home opener. For as down as people are on the Bulls, they were a few minutes away from knocking the Miami Heat out of the postseason last year. And they only added to last year’s roster.
One thing to look out for in this game is that Holmgren will have his work cut out for him going against Nikola Vucevic. The 33-year-old has a massive body and won’t hesitate to put Holmgren on the block and go to work in the post. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if Holmgren ends up in foul trouble in this game. I also think the Bulls have enough shotmaking between DeMar DeRozan and Zach LaVine to hang with Gilgeous-Alexander, even if the Thunder guard really has it going. And if this does turn into a close game late, DeRozan is one of the best late-game players in the league. So, he’d be able to go toe to toe with Gilgeous-Alexander in clutch moments.
This also seems like a game in which Coby White and Patrick Williams could play well for Chicago. Oklahoma City is likely going to neglect those two a little in order to focus on the other three, and I’d expect the two of them to hit some shots with this being a home game.
Bet: Bulls -1.5 (-110 – Play to -2)
NBA Player Props Today – October 25
Cleveland Cavaliers at Brooklyn Nets – 7:30 pm ET
I was really impressed with what I saw from Simmons in the preseason. He looks to have regained his speed and explosiveness, and he also looks confident again. With that in mind, I think there will be some value in playing his player prop Overs early in the year. And I’m starting with this game against the Cavaliers, as I believe his assist total is far too low. Simmons actually had at least seven assists in the final three preseason games that he played for Brooklyn. And Simmons played 23 or fewer minutes in two of those games. With his minutes likely going up to around 30 with the regular season starting, I don’t see any reason he can’t come up with seven assists again. I know the Cavaliers are a good defensive team, but this just isn’t a high enough number to scare me off. And Simmons’ ability to thrive in transition means he could attack the Cavaliers defense before it’s set.
Bet: Simmons Over 6.5 Assists (-105)
New Orleans Pelicans at Memphis Grizzlies – 8:00 pm ET
I talked about this on Hardwood Handicappers a few days ago, but losing Steven Adams was a brutal blow for the Grizzlies. Adams used his massive body to clean the glass for Memphis, and the Grizzlies really don’t have much of a replacement for that. The team will likely be playing Xavier Tillman Sr. and Jaren Jackson Jr. at the center position most of the time, and neither one of those guys is capable of keeping some of the league’s bigger players off the glass. Well, that means an early opportunity for Jonas Valanciunas, who averaged 10.2 rebounds per game last season. Valanciunas’ rebound total is down at 9.5 in some spots tonight, and I’m laying a little juice to play that Over. Valanciunas had the third highest rebound percentage in basketball last season, so he’s one of the toughest guys in the league to box out. I think he’ll impose his will physically here, making for something of an easy win. If you have to play this at 10.5, fire away.
Bet: Valanciunas Over 9.5 Rebounds (-143)
DraftKings Sportsbook Boosts & Offers
DraftKings Sportsbook is offering a 50% profit boost on any NBA bet today. That means you can get a great price on any of the picks I listed above. Just head over there and claim it while you still can.
DraftKings also happens to be offering a $10 bonus bet for NBA bettors to start the season. So, you should pounce on that. Perhaps use it to parlay some of these picks together.
Did you know that you can parlay these picks together? Try out our VSiN Parlay Calculator HERE!