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PointsBet Holds Firm in 2022 NBA Draft Odds As Swings Between Jabari Smith & Paolo Banchero Continue

PointsBet Holds Firm in 2022 NBA Draft Odds As Swings Between Jabari Smith & Paolo Banchero Continue article feature image
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Via Jack Dempsey/Getty Images. Pictured: Paolo Banchero.

After a long night, PointsBet trader Sam Garriock didn’t need coffee to get him up this morning.

At 6:41 a.m. his time, ESPN insider Adrian Wojnarowski fired off a tweet.

As team boards finalize today, the 1-2-3 of the NBA Draft is increasingly firm, per sources: Jabari Smith to Orlando, Chet Holmgren to Oklahoma City and Paolo Banchero to Houston.

— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 23, 2022

Garriock alerted his staff and told them to take down first pick odds.

At 10:45 p.m. ET Wednesday night, Paolo Banchero was +425 to be the first pick. But three hours later, the Duke star was -140. He was as short as -230 before the Woj tweet and came back up to +300.

“Drafts are the hardest thing we do as far as trading goes,” said Garriock, who works out of PointsBet’s headquarters in Denver. “It’s a complex thing to set the odds to, and then, as long as you’re willing to take bets live during the draft, every pick and every trade affects the algorithm.”

With games, sportsbooks have comfort in their systems, with each game adding to the pile of data. Each draft is different, though the principles are the same.

“We have an overall big board, we look at mock drafts and then we take into account overall team needs,” Garriock said. “And then things constantly change during the draft. If Charlotte doesn’t take Jalen Duren at No. 13, he’s not going No. 14 because they already have Allen and Mobley at center.”

While Garriock says his traders have conviction and do their own work, he also admits to look around more than he does for games in the draft, partly because a big bet at a sportsbook could be a signal that something is in the works.

FanDuel shot its odds on Smith all the way up to -10000 at one point before moving it down to -6000 and then -3000. Meanwhile, PointsBet held firm at -476. As FanDuel moved again to -1100, PointsBet remained the shortest option. It’s next move on Smith was to shorten him again to -325.

As for what will be offered live, Woj also becomes a factor there.

“He’s tweeting picks that are sometimes two picks ahead of the TV,” Garriock said. “So if the TV is on Pick 5, he could be on Pick 7, so, to be safe and not get caught, we will be offering odds on Pick 9 at that time.”

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