The Detroit Pistons made OK State G Cade Cunningham the No. 1 overall pick in the 2021 NBA Draft on Thursday night. The rest of the NBA took forever to get through the rest of the draft, but here we are the morning after, looking at the latest crop of rookies. Cunningham went No. 1 followed by the Houston Rockets taking G Jalen Green and the Cleveland Cavaliers selecting C Evan Mobley. After that, it was pretty much a crapshoot the rest of the way through the draft.
So now that we have the 2021-22 rookie class all set, DraftKings Sportsbook has released odds for 2021-22 NBA Rookie of the Year. To nobodies surprise, Cunningham opens as the favorite to win the award at +250. Here we’re going to take you through the rest of the odds and pick out some sleepers who could contend with the Pistons guard.
Green and Mobley end up behind Cunningham in terms of odds, but there’s much more value down the board. The first name that pops out is Jalen Suggs, who is 8/1 and fell to the Orlando Magic at No. 5 after Scottie Barnes went to Toronto at 4. Suggs could end up contributing off the bench for a young Magic team. It’s also worth noting Cole Anthony, Markelle Fultz and Gary Harris all have injury histories, and all three will likely be ahead of Suggs on the depth chart initially.
Jonathan Kuminga will have to get some hype at 20/1 going to the Golden State Warriors. Kuminga, to me, looks a lot like Pascal Siakam in how he plays the game. He can stretch the floor for a big and can run the break pretty easily, so he should fit in nicely with Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green.
Josh Giddey went to the Oklahoma City Thunder at No. 6 and if he comes over from Australia, he could end up being a trendy ROTY pick at 25/1. Giddey had pretty impressive numbers in the NBL last season: 10.9 PPG, 7.5 APG, 7.4 RPG, though he was very inefficient shooting the rock. Still, Giddey brings size and versatility at the guard position, which we’ve seen excel recently with Luka Doncic and LaMelo Ball.
The last name I’ll mention because I’m a homer is Chicago Bulls pick Ayo Dosunmu, who opens at 30/1 to win ROTY despite going in the second round. It’s also pretty surprising Sharife Cooper is 40/1 after falling down the board to the Atlanta Hawks in the second round. Both players are clearly more talented than where they were selected, but generally we don’t see many second-round picks turn out to be rotation players, let alone starters, let alone All-Stars.
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