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NBA Rookie of the Year Odds: Luka Doncic is Now the Favorite to Take the Hardware

NBA Rookie of The Year Betting Odds August 20

With the NBA Summer League all wrapped up and rosters starting to take shape, there’s a new favorite to win the 2018-19 Rookie of the Year with Luka Doncic now the +350 favorite.

Online sportsbook Bovada has updated its oddsboard and has the newest Dallas Maverick from Slovenia as the fave followed by Deandre Ayton at +375, Kevin Knox at +750, Collin Sexton at +750 and Marvin Bagley III at +900 to round out the top five.

Let’s break down the odds and see which player has the best potential to take home the hardware.

Doncic is the Most NBA-Ready Rookie In this Class

Luka Doncic is only 19 years old but he may be the most mature prospect to ever enter the NBA. The Slovenian product has been playing professionally in Europe since he was 14 and was the youngest MVP in the history of the prestigious EuroLeague and its final four. Typically, when a young prospect from Europe comes to the NBA, he’s coming from a team where he’s riding the pine or getting limited opportunities so it’s hard to forecast how he’ll adapt to an NBA roster. That won’t be an issue for Doncic, who will be playing in a system from Rick Carlisle that completely suits his skill set.

The Mavericks will have him paired in the backcourt with Dennis Smith Jr. and have a rim-running center in DeAndre Jordan so Doncic could be in line to stuff the stat sheet and put up some big numbers. At +350, the odds aren’t great so if Doncic isn’t your cup of tea, check out the other options below.

Ayton in Prime Position to Win the ROY Award

In this day and age of the three-point shot, taking a center with the top pick may seem archaic for NBA franchises. But with Deandre Ayton, it may be OK to buck that trend as the seven-footer has developed some range on his jumper at Arizona to pair with his elite athleticism. Ayton resembles the recent shift at the center position similar to the playing style of Joel Embiid, Karl-Anthony Towns and Anthony Davis, who are dominant bigs in today’s game.

The rookie has all the tools necessary to dominate the league and for a team desperate for rim protection and rebounding, Ayton fits the bill to help a Suns squad that ranked dead last in points allowed per game, was 25th in opponent field-goal percentage and lost 61 games last season. While the odds aren’t great at +375, it’s worth noting that the No. 1 overall pick has won this award in three of the last four years and six of the last 10.

Bagley Could Be a Good Stats/Bad Team Candidate

The Sacramento Kings have long been a dumpster fire of a franchise that has been trying to find an identity since its run in the early 2000s. So, when they passed on drafting Luka Doncic to take Duke freshman Marvin Bagley III, you could hear a collective groan from the capital of California that the Kings took another big man to clog up the lane.

Don’t get me wrong, Marvin Bagley III is a great offensive player and for a team starving for contributions from its frontcourt, he will immediately make an impact. But those stats may feel empty if the Kings continue to lose and don’t address their roster issues for the swingman position. For bettors considering investing in Bagley at +900, it wouldn’t be a horrible wager when you consider that the winner of the award in seven of the last 10 years has come from a team that finished in the bottom 10 of the NBA standings the following season.

The Long Shot You Need to Consider

This section is for the bettors looking at the oddsboard trying to identify value and determining where a player could make an immediate impact. With those two factors in mind, the player that stands out is Shai Gilgeous-Alexander at +4000.

The Kentucky product is a six-foot-six point guard who can pretty much do it all and was considered to be the best point guard in the draft by a majority of draft analysts. After the Clips traded Austin Rivers, the only point guards left on the squad are oft-injured Patrick Beverley and Avery Bradley along with Milos “5 o’clock shadow” Teodosic. The Serbian also had his share of injury woes in his debut NBA season which means that SGA is in a crucial position for the Clippers and their roster going forward. There are obviously a lot of worthy candidates on this list but for my money, Gilgeous-Alexander at +4000 offers the best value.

Who will win the 2018-19 NBA Rookie of the Year Award?

Odds as of August 20 at Bovada

  • Luka Doncic +350
  • Deandre Ayton +375
  • Collin Sexton +750
  • Kevin Knox +750
  • Marvin Bagley +900
  • Jaren Jackson Jr +1100
  • Trae Young +1100
  • Wendell Carter Jr +1500
  • Mohamed Bamba +1800
  • De'Anthony Melton +2000
  • Michael Porter Jr +2200
  • Lonnie Walker +2500
  • Harry Giles +2500
  • Mikal Bridges +4000
  • Shai Gilgeous-Alexander +4000
  • Miles Bridges +4000
  • Donte DiVincenzo +4500
  • Jalen Brunson +6000
  • Zhaire Smith +6000
  • Robert Williams +6000
  • Jairus Lyles +8500
  • Grayson Allen +8000
  • Mitchell Robinson +9000

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