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WNBA Best Bets & Player Props Today: Ride the Hot Hand of Jonquel Jones (June 18)

Welcome back to another week of WNBA Best Bets here on OddsShopper! We simmered a bit in my last article, cooling down from a hot streak with an even 2-2 day last Thursday. The record sits at 49-34 on the season and 17-5 over my last 22 bets, so I’m feeling confident and ready to get another hot streak started using today’s two game slate as kindling. The WNBA slate kicks off today with Curt Miller and the Los Angeles Sparks getting a visit from Miller’s old squad, the Connecticut Sun, who look to grab a win against the Sparks before facing off against the Las Vegas Aces and Seattle Storm in their next two games. Later on, the Phoenix Mercury, revitalized by the return of Brittney Griner to the lineup, seek to follow up their upset of the Storm by pulling another off against the New York Liberty on their home floor. Let’s get into the best WNBA props and bets for both of these games.

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WNBA Best Bets & Player Props Today: June 18

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Connecticut Sun-Los Angeles Sparks Bet

The Sparks have been a bit of an enigma this season. They upset the Aces earlier this month and played a really tight game against the Minnesota Lynx last week, losing by just 5. But they’ve been on the losing end of a ton of blowouts this season, including one last game against the Atlanta Dream, who have also been rather inconsistent. The Sparks lack a depth of options offensively, reflected in their offensive rating, the second worst in the league at 96.3 points per 100 possessions. Los Angeles plays largely through Dearica Hamby, who has emerged as an absolute bucket in her role as a primary scorer this season, but the rest of the roster has struggled to create on that end.

With the Spark’s offense fairly one-note, I’m forecasting an absolute smothering from the Connecticut Sun in this game. The Sun league the lead in defensive rating, allowing opponents just 90.7 points per 100 possessions. Hamby will have to contend with special attention from the league’s best defense, facing difficult matchups in particular with Alyssa Thomas and Bri Jones. I’m sensing a frustrating outing for Curt Miller against his old team. My model is projecting this margin in the high teens, so I’m laying the points with Connecticut on the spread but would also take a look at Los Angeles team total under down to 70.5.

With the defensive attention on Hamby and her ceding attempts as of late to Rickea Jackson, I’m also hitting her points under at 17.5.

Best WNBA Bet: Connecticut Sun -13.5

Best WNBA Player Prop: Dearica Hamby Under 17.5 Points

Phoenix Mercury-New York Liberty Bet

Speaking of coaches playing their former team and players, Liberty head coach Sandy Brondello squares off against the Phoenix Mercury, the team she led to a championship with Brittney Griner and Diana Taurasi. Both of these teams are playing some of their best basketball of the season right now, and both are coming off huge wins — the Mercury against the Storm, and the Liberty against the Aces. The Mercury have been lifted to a new level by the return of Griner, forming an excellent inside-outside tandem with Kahleah Copper, who continues to produce at an MVP level. New York also has been boosted by the play of their center, Jonquel Jones, who has taken on a much bigger role on offense over the last few games, averaging 28.3 points on 15 shot attempts per game over her last three.

Instead of focusing on a side here, I’m going to ride Jones’ hot hand and take her overs on points and 3’s. While Jones is due for some regression efficiency-wise, it seems that the Liberty are making a more conscious effort to play through her in the post, and I don’t see that changing with how well it’s worked. As long as she keeps getting her looks, I like Jones to clear these lines. While Griner does pose a fearsome matchup in the paint, centers have actually faired pretty well scoring against the Mercury since Griner’s return: Teaira McCowan had 20 points against the Mercury with Griner playing full run, and A’ja Wilson had 32.

Best WNBA Bet: Jonquel Jones Over 15.5 points and 1.5 3’s

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Dani Bar-lavi

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