Whether the NBA draft is next month or somewhere near the end of summer, there is plenty of speculation as to how the order of players selected will shake out. Since there is no consensus number one pick like Zion Williamson last season, it's more than likely that the teams picking at the top will determine how the draft falls.
Today, we're looking at five of the top prospects in the NBA draft, along with their current odds on their draft position.
SG Anthony Edwards, Georgia
According to many NBA betting experts, Edwards is the best scorer in the draft. Standing at 6'4″ but with a long wingspan and strong athleticism, the freshman averaged 19.1 points per game and has the ability to shoot from three as well as defend multiple positions on the other end. His signature moment with Georgia was scoring 33 points in a half against Michigan State, elevating him into contention for the number one pick.
As of now, Edwards is the favorite to be the first overall pick at +100. He's also the favorite at +150 to be the second pick, showing how oddsmakers feel it's likely that we'll hear Edwards' name called early during draft day.
C James Wiseman, Memphis
Due to a suspension for violating NCAA rules, which led to him deciding to depart Memphis altogether, Wiseman only suited up for three games this season, averaging just under 20 points and 11 rebounds. But even without a real college season, the 7'1″ athlete moves well and can finish above the rim while also being a solid rim protector on defense. He also has a capable offensive game on the perimeter.
Wiseman's selection might really depend on if a team needs a big man, but he is still +180 to be the first pick. He's also second to be the second pick at +250 and the third pick at +300, so it would not be surprising at all to see him go within the top-three picks.
PG LaMelo Ball, Australia
The youngest of the three Ball brothers, LaMelo may be the most polarizing prospect in this class. Now standing at 6'7″, Ball averaged 17 points, 7.5 rebounds, and 7 assists during his professional season in Australia, showcasing his elite passing and play-making ability. While his basketball IQ is the best among these prospects, an inconsistent shot and questions about his defense (and dad) may keep him from being the first selection.
Ball is currently third at +300 to be this year's number one pick and also tied with Wiseman at +250 to be the second pick. He is, however, the favorite at +250 to be the third pick and +300 to be the fourth pick, so in spite of the concerns he will go early.
SF Deni Avdija, Israel
Avdija is in some ways the draft's biggest mystery. Standing at 6'8″, the small forward has reminded some of Luka Doncic due to his passing ability. He's one of the draft's best shooters, especially from long range, and has the ability to create his own shot in the half court. However, Avdija struggles defensively, as he lacks some of the strength and power needed to effectively guard NBA players his size on the wing or down low.
As of now, Avdija is +550 to be taken with the first overall pick, the fourth-highest odds. Interestingly, his odds of being the draft's second or third pick are fairly low, but he's the third-highest to go fourth at +400 and tied for the highest at +400 to go fifth.
PF Obi Toppin, Dayton
Toppin has shot into the conversation to be a high lottery pick after a season that culminated with being named the Naismith Player of the Year. The 6'9″ forward averaged 20 points for the Flyers on 63 percent shooting and 7.5 rebounds per game. He's a dominant athlete who can score from three, and has the size to guard multiple positions. However, he does need to improve his strength to guard at a high level.
Like Avdija, it would be a surprise to see Toppin taken first overall, as he's listed at +550. He is a little more likely though to be the second or third overall pick, listed at +400 and +300 respectively. Among these five players, Toppin seems to have the widest window of picks that he can go, likely anywhere from second to sixth overall.
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