We don't yet know how the 2017 NBA Draft will turn out on the court, but we sure can't complain about the week leading up to it. The Celtics dealt the top pick to the Sixers. Paul George, Jimmy Butler and, bizarrely, Kristaps Porzingis, all seem to be in serious play. The Cavs made the strangest front office move in recent memory. And with a lot of talent available in the lottery, nothing is nearly as certain as it is some years. It's chaos like only the NBA can deliver.
BetOnline has offered a full range of NBA Draft props to help us profit from that chaos. Here we are going to look at the "over/unders" for individual players. To do so, the methodology is simple - we'll look at what six prominent mock drafts - one prepared by connected individuals and not just passionate amateurs - have to say, add some analysis, and look for the profits.
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Jayson Tatum, F, Duke - o/u 4.5: This got a little more interesting with the news that Paul George is very much in play, because the Lakers could potentially move the No. 2 pick, which seems mostly locked on Lonzo Ball if they keep it, as part of a trade to get George. That would give Tatum or Fox more upside. As it stands now, though, the under is likely the right play, but not a comfortable one. Tatum is very likely to go in the top five, but two of the six drafts have him in fifth to the Kings. The under is the very strong favorite here at -175, so there isn't a ton of value here.
De'Aaron Fox, PG, Kentucky - o/u 4.5: Fox seems to be playing musical chairs with Tatum and Josh Jackson. One of the three will fall to the fifth pick, but which one will it be? It's Fox in three of the six mock drafts. The under is at even money - betting that he will be a top four pick - so the drafts suggest that that is fair. No value here, either.
Jonathan Isaac, F, Florida State - o/u 6.5: What you are essentially betting here is whether or not the Magic will keep the freshman in state with the sixth pick. Four of the six mock drafts think they will, with the other two having him going seventh. The under is a major -225 favorite, so there is no value on the under, though if you want some action so you have a rooting interest you could do worse.
Lauri Markkanen, F, Arizona - o/u 7.5: The Finn has seen his value fall through the draft process. I watched him play a lot in college, though, and he could play on my team any time. This bet really goes hand in hand with the last one, because both he and Isaac can be that stretch forward that teams covet. Minnesota, who has the seventh pick, is in the market, and seems to be debating between Isaac and Markkanen. If Isaac goes to Orlando then Markkanen is a logical fit here. The under pays +120, and three of the six drafts have him going to Minnesota, so I like this play quite a bit.
Malik Monk, G, Kentucky - o/u 8,
Dennis Smith, PG, N.C. State - o/u 8.5,
Frank Ntilikina, PG, France - o/u 9.5: We might as well put these three together because they all require us to try to figure out what the Knicks are going to do, and that is pretty much an impossible thing to do in the ridiculous Phil Jackson era. Unless something surprising happens up above then one of these three is likely to go eighth to New York. Of these three bets, by far the most attractive is the French point guard. The under is -165 for Ntilikina, and with both the Knicks and the Mavericks being very interested in him it seems like a strong chance that he will not drop below ninth. Five of the six mock drafts have him going eighth or ninth, and the Mavs have gone as far as to hire his coach in France for the Summer League, so this seems like a comfortable bet. The over for Smith is -140, and that seems fair but not offering value. And Monk is at -140 for the under, which is tough to get excited about because only four of the six drafts have him in the top eight, and two having him going eighth, which would be a refund on the bet.
Luke Kennard, G, Duke - o/u 12.5: Three of the six drafts have him going to Detroit at 12, and one has him off the board before that. The under is at -155, but it's tough to look seriously at the over here. This is not the most interesting price - just as Kennard isn't the most interesting player.
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