The 2022-23 NBA season is quickly approaching and the anticipation goes beyond the win-loss column. The Defensive Player of the Year award might be the most debated honor in the NBA, largely because defensive success is harder to measure. Here is a look at some of the top contenders for the award in 2022-23, with odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.
NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award 2022-23 odds
The favorite: Rudy Gobert (+425)
Gobert was Minnesota’s big offseason acquisition, and the Timberwolves and hoping he can successfully pair with Karl-Anthony Towns in the frontcourt. Gobert’s regular season performances have always been great, but his playoff showings are what need to improve for this deal to be worth it for Minnesota.
Bam Adebayo, Miami Heat: +650
Adebayo has come into his own with the Heat and should take another step offensively this season. His calling card is still rebounding and defense, with Miami likely asking him to pick up some perimeter players from time to time. The versatility is there and this could be Adebayo’s first of many chances to have a real shot at the honor.
Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks: +1000
Antetokounmpo is going to be in the running for several awards. Voters might be a bit accustomed to his consistent brilliance, which often doesn’t allow for a narrative to form. The Bucks are going to be a championship threat though, and that will always keep the Greek Freak in the mix.
Draymond Green, Golden State Warriors: +1100
The talk surrounding Green is all about his fight with Jordan Poole, leading to the veteran forward taking time away from the team. Green will be back on the court and I expect the Warriors to smooth everything over as they attempt to defend their championship. Green has lost a step physically, but his basketball IQ remains sharp. He’s the orchestrator of Golden State’s defensive alignment and the voters could recognize him for that this year.
Best bet: Bam Adebayo +650
Adebayo and Antetokounmpo are going to the only players who won’t have to make some adjustments or go through some type of team dynamic shift early in the season. The Heat are expecting more from their big man, and this seems like a big year for him. Antetokoumpo offers a bigger potential payout but Adebayo feels like the safer choice to overtake Gobert in this category.
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