The 2013 NBA entry draft is scheduled on June 27, and will be held inside the Barclays Center in New York City. The lottery for pick position was held on May 21, which resulted in the Cleveland Cavaliers winning the first pick in this year’s draft.
Online casinos and sportsbetting forums are putting up odds on who the Cavaliers will select as next month’s first pick. The bets are high on point guards and shooting guards as the most sought after players in this year’s draft as many teams require depth on the back end of the court.
However, the odds favour Nerlens Noel, the top centre of the University of Kentucky Wildcats, as the Cavaliers’ preferred first pick. Noel was recognized by the majority of Southeastern Conference (SEC) coaches as one of the most dynamic players in the league, who can put points on the board, and block shots on the defensive end.
During a game against the Florida Gators in February, Noel tore the ACL in his left knee, which sidelined him for the rest of the season. But Noel decided to declare himself for the draft regardless of the injury, and NBA scouts say Noel’s early season record is enough for him to stand out as one of the top prospects in the draft. The online sportsbetting site, Oddsshark.com, pegs Noel’s odds as the first pick at -200.
Noel is seemingly the sole exception in a draft populated by top picks of guards. Otto Porter of Georgetown is the only prospect that betting sites believe could upset Noel’s odds of being selected first in the draft. Porter was named All-American this season, and has odds of +200 of being selected first in the draft. The remaining top 5 contenders are considered Ben McLemore of Kansas, Trey Burke from Michigan, and Victor Oladipo out of Indiana.
The Orlando Magic finished this season with their worst record since becoming a franchise, and secured the second overall pick after Cleveland, followed by the Washington Wizards. In one month, these teams will decide who will help rebuild their franchises for championship contention once again.