Handicapping The Bodog NBA Player Props
by Drew Mangione - 10/30/2006
Bodog has listed odds on just about any significant category that will crop up in the 2006-07 NBA season. Here's a quick breakdown and some handicapping of who could take home the significant accolades this season:
Rookie of the Year:
1) Brandon Roy, G, Portland Trailblazers (2/1)-This award is always a crapshoot in weak draft years, but Roy has looked good with close to 15 points, 3.5 assists and 3 rebounds a night in the preseason. He is a popular pick, but with Zach Randolph in the post, this could be a tandem that turns some heads in the near future.
2) Adam Morrison, F, Charlotte Bobcats (3/1)-He's the best scorer among the rookies and he's on a team in need of scoring help. He'll get his shots and could top the rookie scoring leader board, but other players may prove more complete.
3) Andrea Bargnani, F, Toronto Raptors (15/2)-The No. 1 pick was supposed to be a project, but he has looked good in the preseason and has an impressive 29 points per 48 minutes average. However, he's gunning, as evidenced by his .394 shooting percentage.
Other Favorites: Randy Foye, G, Minnesota Timberwolves, (3/1), may be the loyal No. 2 player to KG that Stephon Marbury refused to be, but late in preseason, he has yet to show he will start, let alone be relied upon; Tyrus Thomas, F, Chicago Bulls, (7/1), is the second leading preseason scorer on a Bulls team behind the team's point guard. That won't last, but his performance is crucial to the Bulls living up to expectations; Rudy Gay, F, Memphis Grizzlies, (6/1), is scoring almost 14 points per game in the preseason and with Pao Gasol out, this team may revert into a free-for-all.
Long shots: Shelden Williams, F, Atlanta Hawks (25/1), is slow, but NBA ready in terms of post moves and could get off to a quick start with Marvin Williams's broken finger; Steve Novak, F, Houston Rockets (40/1), is a 6'10" shooter/pure shooter that could open things up for Yao and McGrady, especially if he keeps up his preseason numbers of 12 points per game on 52 percent shooting.
1) Kobe Bryant, G, Los Angeles Lakers (2/1)-He can score and he can avoid passing the ball unless he's completely smothered. He's also on a team without any real No. 2 option. Hmm, I guess he can continue winning some titles.
2) LeBron James (3/1)-He's the best player in the league, capable of scoring more than 35 per game, but he likes to pass and guard Larry Hughes is a legitimate sidekick, at least in terms of hoisting shots.
3) Dwayne Wade (4/1)-Another unselfish player blessed with the ability to score 30 points per game. With Shaq and his whole supporting cast a year older, Wade will have to take more shots.
4) Allen Iverson, G, Philadelphia 76ers (3/1)-How much can a 165-pound body take? He's 31-years old now and still has no talent around him. Normally, a lack of talent would mean more shots, but he's trying to play point guard and shed the image of being a selfish player. He's coming off arguably his best statistical season, but he bears all the blame that should fall on Billy King and the whole front office.
1) Kevin Garnett, F, Minnesota (9/2)-He does it all and he has to, or else his team loses. This man is a winner and wants to win, so expect him to tear down anything that doesn't rip the nets. Besides, who else will get a board: Eddie Griffin, Vin Baker?
2) Dwight Howard (4/1)-The next KG averaged 12.5 rips per game last year, trailing only the T'Wolves star. He's a good bet to move up a slot, but even with an expected board or two improvement to his average, it may not be enough.
3) Ben Wallace, C, Chicago Bulls (5/1)-He's a beast. The emergence of other rebounders on the Pistons reduced the number of balls that could fall his way, but he's got something to prove with his new team and P.J. Brown doesn't clean the glass like he used to do.
4) Shawn Marion, F, Phoenix Suns (19/4)-Stay away. Two words: Amare Stoudemire. The center is back and should eat up some boards.
1) Steve Nash (5/8)-He's got the system, the teammates and the court vision to lead the league in assists for a third straight year. There's a reason the books are paying out less than what you put in.
2) Jason Kidd, G, New Jersey Nets (15/4)-The man who probably should have been the first true point guard since Bob Cousy to win the MVP is often forgotten, but he's still the leader that makes the Nets a contender. He's got players around him.
3) Chauncey Billups, G, Detroit Pistons (16/1)-His assist numbers shot up under Flip Saunders, bolstering his chances to be remembered as a complete player. He belongs with Kidd and Nash in any conversation about the best point guard.
4) Chris Paul, G, New Orleans/Oklahoma Hornets (13/1)-The best young point guard, this kid is poised to be the next big thing, as long as he doesn't get stuck in the garbage team mentality of other high-scoring, big assist guys penetrating the lane toward 30-win seasons. Regardless, it makes him a great sleeper in this category.
Predictions for which odds were not available:
Defensive Player of the Year: Ben Wallace, C
Most Improved Player: Darko Milicic, C, Orlando Magic
Sixth Man of the Year: Bonzi Wells, F, Houston Rockets
J. Walter Kennedy Citizenship Award: Stephon Marbury, G, New York Knicks
Coach of the Year: Jeff Van Gundy, Houston Rockets
Executive of the Year: Carroll Dawson, Houston Rockets
(All odds courtesy of Bodog sportsbook.)