Friday’s Best Bets: 2023 NCAA Tournament, NBA & NHL (3/17) – BettingPros

No matter your sport of choice, there’s always sports betting action to be had. We’ll have you covered each and every day with our daily best bets. Here are all of our best bets across each major sport in action today.

Today’s Best Bets

Here are today’s best NBA bets.

NBA Best Bets

NBA Same Game Parlay Picks

Portland Trail Blazers vs. Boston Celtics 

  • Leg 1: Jaylen Brown Over 26.5 Points (-110)
  • Leg 2: Jaylen Brown Over 2.5 Three Points (+106)
  • Leg 3: Anfernee Simons Over 20.5 Points (-113)

Jaylen Brown is one of the premier scorers in the NBA. He averages 26.8 points per game and shoots 7.34 three-point shots per game. Tonight Jayson Tatum might be limited due to an injury. Tatum’s injury means more opportunities to shoot against one of the worst defensive teams in the NBA. 

Anfernee Simons will be in a similar situation. Both Damian Lillard (probable) and Jerami Grant (questionable) are on the injury report heading into tonight. That means Simons will be the top-scoring option for the Trailblazers. Simons averages 21.2 points per game and 9.13 three-point attempts so that means he has the opportunity and volume to score points. 

Parlay Odds: +564 

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First Basket Scorer

Philadelphia 76ers vs. Charlotte Hornets

As long as Joel Embiid is in the lineup these days, he’s worth a look for First Basket. He’s making a strong push for MVP down the stretch and stuffing the stat sheet. In addition, he has scored the first field goal for Philadelphia in 27 of the 55 games he’s started, scoring the game’s first field goal in 17.

I’m not just playing Embiid here because scores First Baskets a lot. This is also a pretty great matchup against Charlotte. After moving Mason Plumlee at the trade deadline, Charlotte has been trying a bunch of young players at the center position, none of which are going to be capable of containing Embiid.

On the season, Charlotte has allowed over one-quarter of their opponents’ first field goals to opposing centers. Against the best scoring center in the league, I expect that trend to continue.

Pick: 0.25u on Joel Embiid (+270)

Check out our other NBA First Basket Scorer Odds, Picks & Predictions >>


2023 NCAA Tournament Best Bets

Iowa State vs. Pittsburgh

Leg 1 – Pittsburgh +4.5 (-120)

Pittsburgh enters this contest with the unique advantage of having already played an elimination game against a team that profiles extremely similar to Iowa State, though I believe the Cyclones to be a step up in class from Mississippi State. Iowa State defends shots inside the arc at an elite level, which isn’t as much of an advantage against this Panthers team that shoots the 3 ball at a top-25 frequency in the country at a top-100 percentage. In a low-possession game that Iowa State would like to play, Pitt’s ability to knock down threes will keep them inside this number.

Leg 2 – Nelly Cummings over 10.5 points (-125)

I had to do a double take when checking this line to make sure I was seeing it right; this is a few points too low. Jeff Capel only used a 7-man rotation in their play-in game, which resulted in Cummings playing a full 40 minutes. Cummings has been a high-usage player down the stretch, averaging 10.25 shots per game in the month of March, excluding a blowout loss to Duke in the ACC tournament. He’s an efficient scorer, shooting the ball at a 36% clip from deep and 88% from the foul line. There’s no reason to think that Cummings won’t play a full 40 again, and I believe that he will get up enough shots and get to the foul line enough to get this total without much sweat.

Leg 3 – Blake Hinson 3+ 3PM (-165)

Hinson is not afraid to let it fly from beyond the arc, averaging over seven 3 point attempts per game, and shooting it at a 39% rate. Attacking the rim and shooting mid-range jumpers is not a recipe for success against this Cyclones defense and considering their 3 point shooting just led them past Mississippi State, I do not expect that gameplan to change. Look for Hinson to get up plenty of threes in this one, knocking down at least 3 of them.

Parlay Odds: +430

Check out our other College Basketball Betting Odds, Picks & Predictions >>


NHL Best Bets

Carolina Hurricanes (+105) @ Toronto Maple Leafs (-125) | O/U 6 (-120/+100)

In the best game of Friday’s slate, there is an Eastern Conference tilt with the Atlantic Division’s Toronto Maple Leafs hosting the Metropolitan Division’s Carolina Hurricanes. Entering this contest in good form, Carolina has won five of its last seven games, a trend that is likely to continue in this heavyweight battle.

While Toronto is obviously very good, they lag behind the Canes in almost every category. At 5-on-5, the Leafs rank sixth in the league in expected goals for per 60 minutes (xGF/60) and 11th in expected goals against per 60 minutes (xGA/60).

On the flip side, at 5-on-5, Carolina ranks second in the league in xGF/60 and first in xGA/60. The one advantage the Leafs possess is in net, with goaltender Ilya Samsonov slated to start between the pipes on Friday.

Through 34 appearances in the crease this season, Samsonov is 23-8-3 with a .916 save percentage (SV%) and 2.36 goals against average (GAA). However, across the ice, goaltender Frederik Andersen is projected to start against his former team for the Canes.

Entering this matchup in good form, Andersen is 6-3 with a .918 SV% and 1.97 GAA over his last nine starts. While Toronto boasts home-ice advantage, that is not enough in my opinion to put a plus-sign next to Carolina’s name.

Best Bet: Hurricanes ML (+105 via BetMGM)

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Whether you’re new to sports betting or a betting pro, our Sports Betting Strategy and Advice page is for you. You can get started with our 101 section — including 10 Sports Betting Tips for Beginners — or head to more advanced strategies — like Key Numbers When Betting Against the Spread — to learn more.

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