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Betting on the 2017 NBA Draft – value odds & tips for Lonzo Ball

NBA Draft 2017Friday, June 23, 2017, 9am AEST, watch on ESPN

IF you thought the NBA season was boring because of the inevitable Cleveland vs. Golden State NBA Finals series and you just knew the super team Warriors were going to win, now is the time to get your NBA on.

The 2017 NBA draft is on this Friday, where we will get a look at the next generation of basketball studs – and duds – in the best league in the world.

And, for those who like to bet on two snails crawling up a wall, there are plenty of betting markets to whet your basketball punting whistle on Friday.

The draft will be held at the Brooklyn Nets New York home, the Barclays Centre for the fifth time in a row, where NBA commissioner Adam Silver and his deputy Mark Tatum will call out the 60 names of young talents who will get their chance at glory in the world’s toughest basketball league.

The NBA loves a little bit of drama and the Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers have already kicked it off with a huge trade that sees an exchange of picks, with the Sixers moving up to number one and the Celtics falling to number three, but also getting a future first round pick from Philly.

The trade paves the way for the Philadelphia 76ers to unite The Process Joel Embiid and Aussie Ben Simmons with Washington University’s Markelle Fultz, who many believe is the best point guard available in the draft.

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Fultz was a genuine monster in college, posting averages of 23.2 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.9 assists. He has speed, shooting and athleticism, combined with a wingspan that is nearly 6’10”. Fultz is the complete package and could provide the impetus for a dynasty in Philly – provided the tower of power Embiid and versatile standout Simmons can stay on the court long enough for them to gel. Add in Euro stud Dario Saric and talented pieces Robert Covington and Richaun Holmes and you have the nucleus for a future star team.

Of course, the Celtics, for whatever reason, have decided Fultz is not the man for them, given that they made the trade and they will have to look elsewhere to find their next big talent.

With clutch spark plug Isaiah Thomas on the roster, the Celtics preferred to move away from Fultz and may look to take a silky swingman like Duke’s Jayson Tatum or Kansas Freshman Josh Jackson.

The draft is considered a deep one and there are several can’t miss talents, but the one with most hype around him just might be UCLA’s Lonzo Ball.

Ball appears to have endless talent. Is already a great set up man and has a level head on his shoulders – which is a miracle, given his notoriously boisterous father LaVar, who has managed to garner more worldwide headlines than his son.

That dad is the story has been to the detriment of his son and they will be hoping that doesn’t scare off the Lakers. Of course, Magic Johnson is reportedly enamoured with Ball’s game, so that counts in his favour, even if his jump shot appears broken (they sell go in, but that low left dip will get figured out very quickly by NBA defences.

Who will be number one

It would take something remarkable for the Sixers not to take Fultz at pick one in Friday’s draft. He is the perfect compliment to Simmons and Embiid and figures to be a long time NBA pro that can grow with that young nucleus.

Markelle Fultz ($1.01)
Josh Jackson ($19)
Lonzo Ball ($21)
Jayson Tatum ($51)
De’Aaron Fox ($71)
Jonathan Isaac ($101)
Dennis Smith ($126)
Malik Monk ($201)
Lauri Markkanen ($201)
Frank Ntilikina ($201)
Zach Collins ($251)
Odds provided by

Which team will draft Lonzo Ball?

Los Angeles Lakers ($1.18)
Any other team (+370)

Lonzo was apparently a little out of shape on his workout for the Lakers, but we don’t think that will stop him landing in La La Land. LA is the only place in America that can drown out LaVar’s crap. The Lakers have been terrible in the draft – none of Jordan Russell, D’Angelo Russell or Brandon Ingram are close to being difference makers. He’s going to be a Laker.

Odds provided by

Who gets drafted where?

De’Aaron Fox
Picks 1-4 ($1.81)
Pick 5+ ($1.92)

We really like the $1.92 about Fox falling out of the top four. If all goes to plan, Fultz and Ball go 1-2, and the gun swingmen in Tatum and Jackson go next. The only spanner in the works could be if the Phoenix Suns like the idea of pairing the young gun with their star two guard Devin Booker, but that would cause problems for the Suns’ 13 point guards.

Dennis Smith
Picks 1-7 (+103)
Pick 8+ ($1.73)

Man, we absolutely love Smith, but he just hasn’t had the same devotion from the scouts. With the likes of Malik monk, Lauri Markkanen and Jonathan Isaac in the mix, we reckon the Dallas Mavericks will have their fingers crossed that the point guard falls to them at nine – they could use him too.

Terrance Ferguson
Picks 1-20 ($2.60)
Pick 21+ ($1.45)

Terrance Ferguson will not be picked in the top 20. Mark it down. An athletic freak, Ferguson skipped his college year to play in Australia. While he impressed for the Sixers, he didn’t exactly dominate, learning the game from more seasoned professionals. We reckon the Spurs will be sitting pretty to nab another Aussie late in the first round.

All odds

Hottest draft prospects

Markelle Fultz
Lonzo Ball
Jayson Tatum
Josh Jackson
De’Aaron Fox
Jonathan Isaac
Lauri Markkanen
Malik Monk
Dennis Smith

The top 10

1. Philadelphia 76ers (via Brooklyn Nets & Boston Celtics)
2. Los Angeles Lakers
3. Boston Celtics (via Sacramento Kings & Philadelphia 76ers)
4. Phoenix Suns
5. Sacramento Kings (via Philadelphia 76ers)
6. Orlando Magic
7. Minnesota Timberwolves
8. New York Knicks
9. Dallas Mavericks
10. Sacramento Kings (via New Orleans Pelicans)

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