2019 NBA Draft: Duke star freshman Zion Williamson the favorite to be selected No. 1 overall
Williamson leads his two Duke teammates and Ja Morant with the best odds to go No. 1 this summer
Freshman sensation Zion Williamson, the superstar talent playing his first (and presumably only) college basketball season at Duke, is the favorite for a number of things. He's the fan favorite, with his highlight reel dunks; He's the favorite to win Player of the Year honors; And he's the favorite to be taken No. 1 overall in this summer's NBA Draft.
According to opening odds this week from DraftKings on who will be selected with the top pick, Williamson leads the field as the overwhelming favorite at -2000, meaning a $20 bet would net the bettor $1. His teammate, RJ Barrett, has the second-best odds at +550, followed by Murray State guard Ja Morant at +650. Williamson's other talented Blue Devils teammate, Cam Reddish, is +2000. Williamson is the No. 1 player in, ahead of Morant and Barrett, but the gap between him and the field, as represented by the odds for him to go No. 1, is quite wide.
Williamson's emerged as both a tantalizing prospect and productive player at Duke. In 25 games this season for the No. 1 Blue Devils, he's averaging 22.4 points, 9.2 rebounds, 2.3 steals and 1.9 blocks per game. In the ACC, he ranks second in scoring, first in field-goal percentage, first in steals and sixth in blocks. He also leads the nation with a 42.3 PER (Player Efficiency Rating), the highest mark in at least a decade at the college level.
If you're looking to wager some cheddar on Williamson's long odds, there's not much value. You'd have to throw down some major dough just to earn enough for a nice dinner, if he indeed does go No. 1 overall. But at this point, there may not be value in Barrett or Morant, either.
There's still regular season play, postseason play and the NBA Combine before teams make their final selections and evaluations, but for now at No. 1, everything is coming up Zion.
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