NBA Defensive Player Of The Year Odds: Are Sportsbooks Mispricing Bam Adebayo?

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Some sportsbooks mispricing Bam Adebayo in Defensive Player of Year odds (Photo by Schuler/Imago/Icon Sportswire)

For three of the last four years, NBA Defensive Player of the Year has been dominated by one man: Rudy Gobert. And based on DOPY odds, it appears we are headed for another award-winning season for the defensive stopper.

But wait, is there someone we have been sleeping on?

While Gobert is the clear favorite on all oddsboards, there’s another player who stands out at one sportsbook.

Here are updated odds for the 2022 NBA Defensive Player Of The Year from a variety of legal sportsbooks.

PointsBetDraftKingsFanDuelBetRiversCaesarsBetMGM
Rudy Gobert -130Rudy Gobert -160Rudy Gobert -155Rudy Gobert -125Rudy Gobert -150Rudy Gobert -140
Bam Adebayo +600Giannis Antetokounmpo +425Giannis Antetokounmpo +440Giannis Antetokounmpo +300Giannis Antetokounmpo +450Giannis Antetokounmpo +500
Giannis Antetokounmpo +700Jaren Jackson Jr. +700Jaren Jackson Jr. +950Draymond Green +600Jaren Jackson Jr. +900Jaren Jackson Jr. +900
Draymond Green +1500Draymond Green +1000Draymond Green +1200Jaren Jackson Jr. +800Bam Adebayo +1000Draymond Green +1100
Robert Williams +1500Mikal Bridges +1600Robert Williams +1300Mikal Bridges +1400Draymond Green +1200Robert Williams +1400
Joel Embiid +2000Bam Adebayo +1600Joel Embiid +1600Mikal Bridges +1800
Robert Williams +2000Mikal Bridges +1800Robert Williams +2000Joel Embiid +2500
Bam Adebayo +3000Joel Embiid +2400Bam Adebayo +2000Bam Adebayo +2500

Did ya’ see that? Bam Adebayo has the second-shortest Defensive Player of the Year odds on PointsBet, but he’s well down the betting board at the other shops.

The Adebayo market may be adjusting, though. On Monday, the Heat big man could have been had at +8000 on FanDuel to win Defensive Player of the Year. On Tuesday, the FanDuel oddsmakers changed their tune, moving him down to +4900, then +4200, and then finally +1600.

BetRivers moved Adebayo from +8000 to +2000 in one fell swoop.

DraftKings has steadily tightened Adebayo’s price. On Monday, Adebayo was +5000 to win the award, before a move to +4000 and then to +3000 as of Wednesday morning. Still, DraftKings gives him just the eighth best shot at the the award.

Below, I make the case for why the longer odds are a massive miscalculation and why some of the “market leaders” could pay big for the mistake.

Case For Bam Adebayo As Defensive Player Of The Year

“I don’t know if you’ve noticed but Bam, is on a f—— bender right now,” Ringer Founder Bill Simmons said in a recent podcast.

Bender, indeed!

Let’s dive into the statistics with some help from PointsBet Head of Trading Jay Croucher….

There are those who say, “Hey, Bam missed 25 games this year!”, and they are correct. He has missed 25 games. However, I see your situation and I raise you a situation:

Voters for NBA awards tend to get bored. That’s why LeBron James did not win MVP every year in Cleveland Part 1 and in Miami, and it may not bode well for Gobert’s fourth DPOY honor.

It is not like Gobert’s and Adebayo’s games played have been outlandishly lopsided, either. Ahead of tonight’s action, Gobert has played 46 games this year compared to Adebayo’s 37, and in fact, has missed more game recently than Adebayo.

And Bam has better stats in several defensive categories this season.

Gobert does have the edge in blocks, 2.3 vs 0.9 per game,  but Adebayo makes up for that with his stealing prowess (1.5 vs. 0.7), via NBA.com.

Are Sportsbooks Sleeping At The Wheel?

Defensive Rating is a stat showing how many points a player allows per 100 possessions. Is it a more precise metric than plus/minus because it takes into account only points scored as s result of the player’s defensive mistakes, not all points scored while a player is on the floor.

As PointsBet’s Croucher alludes to in the tweet above, Adebayo has the 20th best player defensive rating (102.4) among all players (including players without enough minutes to qualify for the award). Gobert comes in at 53rd with a 104.7.

Now that we know where each player stands on the season statistically, below I break down how they have fared in recent games. Hint: Adebayo has the momentum.

*Gobert has played in only 11 games since January 1st.

Bam Adebayo Defensive Stats Since February 1 (11 Games)

1.54 blocks, 1.73 Steals, 97.8 Defensive Rating (3rd best in the NBA)

Rudy Gobert Defensive Stats Since January 1 (11 Games)

2.1 Blocks, 0.54 Steals, 116.0 Defensive Rating (239th Best in the NBA)

End Of Season Will Provide Clarity

Bam Adebayo should not have been +8000 to win Defensive Player of the Year, that much we know. For bettors lucky enough to get in on that action, their closing-line value is on pace to be absolutely top notch.

What we need to see now is how these players close out the season and how many games they play.

But DPOY handicapping should be heavily focused on Adebayo as the NBA season hits the stretch run. He is playing the best basketball of his career at the right time.

About the Author

Erich Richter

Erich is a New York-based writer and gambling expert specializing in the sports industry. His work is featured in numerous publications. Erich is a diehard Mets, Giants, and Knicks fan (it’s been tough). Twitter: @erichterrr

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