There’s a lot of love among bettors for Ben Simmons heading into this season, especially after he knocked down a three-pointer in a preseason game.
After Simmons hit that triple on Oct. 8, bookmaker PointsBet moved Simmons’ MVP odds from 100-1 to 80-1. He went “from having limited action to becoming our biggest liability in an instant,” said Matt Chaprales, head of content for PointsBet, which is licensed in New Jersey. Those odds are even lower today.
FanDuel said the same thing. More money has been bet on Anthony Davis, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Steph Curry, but Simmons is their biggest headache because of his long odds. They declined to specify, but a spokesman said Simmons was third on the number of MVP tickets they’d written. Only Davis and Curry were more popular picks.
Dig a little deeper and find that DraftKings has props on Simmons’ shooting from distance.
The line on his number of three-point attempts is 65.5 (+160 over/-225 under) and for three-pointers made it’s 16.5 (+148 over/-200 under).
Simmons was 0 for 6 last season and 0 for 11 as a rookie. And that “three” he hit earlier this month was in an exhibition game against a Chinese professional team. In two preseason games against NBA teams, Simmons did not try a triple.
If he goes over the line of 16 made threes this season, he’ll probably be in the MVP conversation, which is the last thing local bookies need. In a random sampling by the Inquirer, William Hill’s sportsbooks had the highest odds for Simmons at 66-1. The Sixers are about 8-1 to win the title.
“Simmons’ MVP interest has been through the roof since he splashed that viral trey,” Pointsbet’s Chaprales explained. “There was an initial flurry of activity the following day (Oct. 9) and steady action since with his price slicing in half from 100-1 to 50-1. [He’s] easily our biggest liability on the futures market.”
» FanDuel has the Sixers at +160 to be the No. 1 seed in the East. Only Milwaukee (-130) has shorter odds.
» Tobias Harris is +350 to make the All-Star team at PointsBet. Ben Simmons is -223 while Joel Embiid is -3334, which means a bettor must wager $33.34 to win $1. To bet that Embiid will NOT be an All-Star the wager is $1 to win $11.
» Simmons is fourth on the DraftKings’ oddsboard to lead the league in assists per game at +550. Ahead of him are Russell Westbrook (+400), LeBron James (+450) and Trae Young (+450).
» FanDuel has Embiid at +750 to win defensive player of the year and Simmons at +5000. Patrick Beverley, the human gluetrap who plays for the Clippers, is 100-1. If L.A. is as good as projected, he’d be a sleeper, though the last guard to win DPOY was Gary Payton 24 years ago.
» Brett Brown is 12-1 to win coach of the year. Doc Rivers, of the Clippers, is favored at 5-1.