With the NBA’s season coming to a close, we get the usual quick turnaround to the draft. The draft takes place this Thursday June 23rd at 8PM EST. The NBA takes place at the Barclays Center in New York.
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This year’s NBA draft has the feel of being a foregone conclusion at the very top. The first three picks are all but locked in. Essentially all the teams believe they know how the first three picks will go, with little room left for surprise.
The Magic will make the first pick, and that will assuredly be Auburn’s Jabari Smith. The team did look at other options to be thorough, but Smith will be the pick. The betting odds on that outcome are -420. While that is a large vig, the probability of Smith going first are greater than that four to one.
Next up at number two are the Thunder, and they will take Chet Holmgren out of Gonzaga. Holmgren will fit in perfectly with the Thunder, giving their interior defense some teeth. Holmgren is only -280 to go second overall. That is a favorable price due to overblown medical rumors.
The third pick will be big man out of Duke Paolo Banchero. The Rockets dealt Christian Wood last week and will take his replacement at number three. Banchero is -310 to go third and again, that is a favorable price tag.
It is at number four where the draft officially begins, and that is where our prop betting will begin as well.
NBA Draft Prop Bets
We covered how the first three picks will play out. That number four slot will likely see Jaden Ivey out of Purdue be the pick, but what team makes it is the largest question mark. The Kings will have no shortage of suitors, and Ivey will be a coveted trade asset. Ivey to go fourth overall is -175, but we can get better value with a parlay on FanDuel.
The first four picks to be Smith, Holmgren, Banchero, Ivey only costs -110. Taking the foregone conclusions of the first three picks and using that to get Ivey at four is the sharp play.
Betting Pick: Parlay Top Four -110
Next up on our prop sheet will be the player selected at five overall. The Pistons own that pick. Detroit will be hoping and praying Ivey is not the pick at four, but they will be disappointed. Instead they will take big man Keegan Murray out of Iowa. The Pistons traded away Jerami Grant, and just like the Rockets will draft the replacement in the top five. Murray being the fifth pick brings a +130 return.
Betting Pick: Murray fifth overall +130
Other Props To Bet
We have three other prop picks to bet on, all of which come in the 10-15 range.
The first bet of the three will be for Wisconsin’s Johnny Davis to go in the top ten. That outcome returns +125 and the team sitting at 10 seems to be a perfect fit. The Wizards need a point guard in a massive way, and Davis will easily be the best available. Things could get dicey if Washington opts to trade the pick, but in any event, the +125 return is quite attractive.
Betting Pick: Davis to go top ten +125
Next up are a pair of over/under prop wagers.
The first is an over on Memphis big man Jalen Duren. His over/under is set at pick 10.5. Duren projects as a contributor but not a star. It is difficult to envision the Spurs at nine ear marking him as the best player available. It is also difficult to envision the Wizards taking a big at ten. That means the first realistic landing spot for Duren is to the Knicks at eleven overall of the NBA Draft.
Betting Pick: Jalen Duren Over Pick 10.5
Our last prop pick of the draft is on Kansas wing Ochai Agbaji. His prop over/under is set at pick 14.5. This is interesting because I see the 14th pick being his absolute floor. The Cavaliers pick at 14 and are in need of a wing. The fit is just too good for the Cavs to pass on Agbaji, should he make it to their pick at 14. Even if Ousmane Dieng falls to the Cavs, that scenario likely means Agbaji is off the board already.
Betting Pick: Agbaji Under Pick 14.5
Good luck and enjoy the draft!