With Vegas already prepared for the 2012-13 NBA Season below is a guide to the NBA Futures market.
2012-13 NBA Championship
2012-13 Rookie of the YearAnthony Davis - $4.00 Any Unlisted Player - $6.50 Bradley Beal - $8.00 Thomas Robinson - $8.50 Damian Lillard - $9.00 Harrison Barnes - $11.00 Jeremy Lamb - $11.00 Royce White - $16.00 In what was supposed to be a bumper year for rookies, the 2012 NBA Draft didn't quite pan out as expected with many lottery prospects sliding deep into the late 1st round due to injuries. Vegas has priced a few rookies this year with a chance of taking the coveted ROTY title that last season went to Cleveland superstar in the making, Kyrie Irving. In order to win the ROTY crown a player requires a few things to make it happen including an NBA ready body, extreme talent, plenty of playing time and if possible some wily old veterans to teach them the nuances of the game. Past winners have tended to have a dramatic impact in their first season (Griffin, Evans, Irving etc) and the current crop have the potential to do just that. A few players have most of the qualities listed above so let's start at the #1 pick in Anthony "Unibrow" Davis playing for the New Orleans Hornets. Davis is a highly talented forward that will block shots, rebound and finish anything you throw next to the rim. At $4 he is the lowest price rookie but given the Hornets don't have a top 10 PG and he doesn't have a polished offensive game just yet I would be staying away from Davis until after a month or two of action. His body is still slightly under developed for an NBA big and his best sutied postion right now (PF) will already be taken by Ryan Anderson. Bradley Beal and Thomas Robinson have the talent to do some damage out of the gates but they are already playing on teams with established players and exciting rookies (John Wall for Washington and Tyreke Evans/DeMarcus Cousins for Sacramento) so their touches and production may be limited. If Robinson develops a good relationship with Cousins then the two could bring back the glory days of the Kings and shine more light on the rookie's performances. The most exciting prospect to come out of the Summer League games was Portland's Damian Lillard. He put up impressive numbers in college and dominated the annual Summer League tournament averaging 26ppg, 4rpg and 5apg. He has the skill set, speed and shooting touch to be a star in the NBA and some have likened him to a better version of Derrick Rose, which is scary stuff. At $9.00 he represents excellent value, especially if he can run an effective pick and roll game with LaMarcus Aldridge. Any other player has the potential to be a surprise packet (Isaiah Thomas from last pick in the 2012 draft) but given the calibre of this draft class I don't see anyone out of the list above taking out the ROTY title. My Pick - Damian Lillard @ $9.00. It's too hard to ignore his impressive Summer League performance and with the starting PG job a lock down at Portland he will have plenty of opportunity to develop into a superstar in his rookie year. Dark Horse - Royce White @ $16.00. A few off court issues and a question mark about possible anxiety issues meant Royce White slipped down the draft ranking and Houston took the risk on him. After nearly averaging a triple double in the final three games of the Summer League he has an impressive skill set for a forward. Given Houston doesn't have an established team anymore he might be given the opportunity to shine under Kevin McHale. Watch this space. Photo Credit: TSN.ca
Who is everyone's pick for the 2013 NBA Title and ROTY? Will Miami go back to back and will Anthony Davis live up to his reputation? Photo Credit: (top) Doug Pensinger/Getty Images North America