The NBA is so close to tipping off the regular season, you don't even have to have synesthesia to be practically tasting John Tesh's "Roundball Rock" right now. It's the second-best auditory experience in sports, right below the "cha-ching" of hitting a long shot bet.
Here are four of my favorite NBA futures offering a massive payout on BetMGM:
Donovan Mitchell (+3000)
Perhaps more impressive than Mitchell's nuclear 2019-20 playoff series against the Nuggets was the 32.3 points per game he averaged on a sprained right ankle last postseason. He's been playing with a chip on his shoulder ever since he lost the Rookie of the Year award to Ben Simmons. Mitchell achieved career highs in scoring, rebounds, assists and 3-pointers made last season and his 26.4 points per game was tied for 11th-highest in the league. That average has gone up every season, and I think we're about to see yet another leap from the man they call "Spida." If the Jazz claim the first seed in the West again and Mitchell scores just a few more points per game, we'll be calling him the MVP.
Bradley Beal (+6600)
Beal is the odds-on favorite to win the scoring title this season, yet he's +6600 to win MVP. Can someone make this make sense to me? I'm not saying that he should be one of the front-runners to win the award, but he shouldn't be outside of the top 20 with the same odds as Domantas Sabonis. The Wizards are a deep team with one of the most underrated rosters in the East, and they could easily find themselves back in the playoffs (a great value at +425 on BetMGM). Should Beal win the scoring title and earn a playoff berth for his team, he'd certainly be one of the favorites for MVP, yet if you parlayed those two events, it would only pay +2263. I love the value at +6600.
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR
Nah'Shon "Bones" Hyland (+4000)
I have a few rules for betting on Rookie of the Year. One of them is, if a player reminds me of Ja Morant, I'm putting money down on him. If his nickname is "Bones," I'm doubling that bet. Jamal Murray's absence has left an opening for a scoring guard, and Hyland could be the one to fill it. The rookie is a gifted slasher and finisher around the rim and an equally deadly threat from 3-point range. He averaged 15.2 points, 4.6 assists and four rebounds in the preseason, which led Nuggets coach Michael Malone to confirm that Hyland has earned playing time. Now all he has to do is capitalize on it.
Cam Thomas (+6600)
The Nets got a steal when they selected Thomas with the 27th pick in this year's draft. The shooting guard is an absolute bucket, averaging 23 points per game in his lone season at LSU and scoring 42 points in 50 minutes of preseason action for Brooklyn. Kevin Durant has played 35 regular-season games in the last two years, James Harden is coming off a hamstring injury and Kyrie Irving has been temporarily banished to the far corner of the flat earth. Any series of unfortunate events would lead to significant minutes for Thomas, whose contributions in a high-scoring offense could turn that Lemony Snicket into lemonade for the Nets and a hundred-dollar bet into a sweet $6,600 for bettors holding a Rookie of the Year ticket.
Stats provided by Basketball Reference.