- Ja Morant’s ROY odds have shortened to -2000, after being at -300 before the NBA suspended play
- Zion Williamson is +800, does the number #1 overall pick have any chance at winning the award at this point?
- Is it worth it to bet on the ROY race while the NBA season is suspended?
As the chances of the NBA regular season returning continue to slim due to COVID-19, Ja Morant seems to have a stronghold on the Rookie of the Year trophy. Zion Williamson has been closing in on Morant in recent months, but it seems like he will run out of time to complete the comeback.
In the most recent Rookie of the Year odds, Morant is now a -2000 favorite to win the award. The Grizzlies’ rookie was a -300 favorite at the beginning of March, but with the unknown status of the NBA season, the oddsmakers believe Zion doesn’t have a chance to fight back.
2020 NBA Rookie of the Year Odds
Odds taken March 30th.
Will Zion Get Another Chance?
At this point, NBA executives and owners are calling for a mid-to-late June return the best-case scenario. Now, does this mean the regular season will end and the playoffs will begin? No one can say confidently.
Instead of speculating, let’s take a look at what these two rookies have done in their young NBA careers thus far.
Morant has certainly lived up to the hype. The second overall pick out of Murray State has led the Memphis Grizzlies to a 32-33 record and currently the last playoff spot in the Western Conference.
With Morant’s flash, ability to drive the lane, and unbelievable court vision, there is no reason why the 20-year-old should not win the award. NBA fans are starting to panic as well with no Morant Magic on the court recently:
Day 15 of Hiatus: I miss Ja Morant pic.twitter.com/YcRY00pfOx
— ???? 2.0 ❄️ (@MANOMAGlC) March 27, 2020
Morant is averaging 17.6 points, 6.9 assists, and 3.5 rebounds in 59 games this year. Williamson’s numbers might be better, but there is a much smaller sample size.
Williamson is averaging 23.6 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 2.2 assists in just 19 games after suffering an injury in the preseason. New Orleans finds themselves in 10th place in the Western Conference and 3.5 games out of a playoff spot.
Despite playing a small number of games, Zion has been one of the most efficient players in the NBA:
Applied Efficiency Regular Season Rankings from 14-15 to 19-20 (Min. 100 Shooting Possessions):
1. Steph Curry: +3.93
2. Kevin Durant: +3.58
3. James Harden: +3.05
4. Zion Williamson: +2.77
5. Karl-Anthony Towns: +2.58
6. Brandon Clarke: +2.15
7. John Collins: +2.13 pic.twitter.com/D5lFgvxe8S
— Baltej (@BaltejNBA) March 26, 2020
Is it Worth Betting?
There is no reason to be making a wager on the Rookie of the Year winner at this point. I know it might seem appetizing with Williamson at +800, but there’s really no sense in it.
Williamson has just not had the time to develop a rookie resume like Morant’s. If there was absolute certainty that the NBA was resuming soon and that the regular season would be completed, it would not be a bad play. However, that is just not the reality we’re faced with at this point.
Ja Morant is the UNANIMOUS Rookie of the Year favourite, receiving 70/70 votes from media members in ESPN’s survey. pic.twitter.com/GemKheOKUw
— Basketball Forever (@Bballforeverfb) March 25, 2020
Morant is a lock for the award. I know everyone is bored and wants something to bet on, but I strongly encourage you to save your money and not bet on the ROY winner.
Let's have fun and keep it civil.