Anthony Edwards favourite to be taken first overall in NBA Draft

Georgia's Anthony Edwards (5) moves the ball past Mississippi guard Bryce Williams (13) during an NCAA college basketball game in Athens, Ga., Saturday, Jan. 25, 2020. (Joshua L. Jones/AP)

With the NBA season still in limbo due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it remains unclear when the 2020 NBA Draft will take place. However, that hasn’t prevented Anthony Edwards from opening as a narrow favourite to go first overall, with the Georgia Bulldogs guard pegged as a +125 wager on those NBA Draft odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

Edwards emerged as a star during his lone season of college basketball at Georgia, earning SEC Freshman of the Year honours while averaging 19.1 points and 5.2 rebounds per game and tallying three double-doubles in 32 outings.

But while there is no denying the 18-year-old’s talent, making his collegiate debut with the Bulldogs has contributed to his somewhat tempered stock on the odds to go first overall in the 2020 NBA Draft. Georgia is coming off yet another disappointing season, finishing with a 5-13 straight-up record in conference play that put them in 13th place in the SEC standings.

Edwards is closely trailed by James Wiseman, who sits as a strong +150 second favourite to go first overall in the NBA Draft at online sports betting sites, while LaMelo Ball rounds out the front of the pack on that prop wager at an intriguing +400 odds. While Edwards’ draft stock might be impacted by the calibre of his team, Wiseman enters the NBA Draft after appearing in just three games during a freshman year at Memphis overshadowed by controversy.

Named the Gatorade National Player of the Year following his final year of high school basketball, Wiseman entered his freshman campaign with the Tigers as one of the top-rated prospects in the nation. However, he ended up in a legal battle with the NCAA after being ruled ineligible to play, and subsequently left Memphis to focus on preparing for the draft.

The younger brother of the New Orleans Pelicans’ Lonzo Ball, LaMelo Ball continued to blaze an unusual path to the NBA this past season as a guard with the Illawarra Hawks of the Australian-based National Basketball League. Ball showed steady improvement in his Australian debut; the 18-year-old averaged 17.0 points and 7.6 rebounds per game while recording a pair of triple-doubles in just 12 appearances to earn NBL Rookie of the Year honours.

Further down the board, Dayton Flyers power forward Obi Toppin leads the best of the rest at +1000 odds to go first overall in the 2020 NBA Draft. Maccabi Tel Aviv star and FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship MVP Deni Avdija then follows at +1200 on those NBA odds, ahead of North Carolina Tar Heels point guard Cole Anthony at a line of +2000.

When submitting content, please abide by our submission guidelines, and avoid posting profanity, personal attacks or harassment. Should you violate our submissions guidelines, we reserve the right to remove your comments and block your account. Sportsnet reserves the right to close a story’s comment section at any time.