NBA Defensive Player of the Year Odds 2023 | Prediction, Sleeper Picks & Opening Lines

Posted: Aug 7, 2022Last updated: 2 days ago

The start of the 2022-23 NBA season is just around the corner, which means it’s time to start looking at potential futures bets you can make before it officially gets underway. Below, we’ll be taking a closer look at the NBA Defensive Player of the Year award odds and best picks.

Celtics guard Marcus Smart won the award this past season, becoming the first player at his position to do so since Gary Payton in 1996. Understandably, the odds on Smart winning again this year are relatively short.

However, there will be a number of other challengers in this year’s race, including one familiar face in an all-new location. Let’s dive in and see who all will be vying to take home the honor of being the NBA’s best defender in 2023.

NBA Defensive Player of the Year Odds 2023

These NBA gameday odds are current as of Thursday, Aug. 11 at 4 p.m. ET and courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook.

  • Rudy Gobert (+500)
  • Bam Adebayo (+700)
  • Robert Williams III (+750)
  • Draymond Green (+800)
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo (+1000)
  • Marcus Smart (+1000)
  • Mikal Bridges (+1200)
  • Anthony Davis (+2000)
  • Evan Mobley (+2500)
  • Jarrett Allen (+3000)
  • Jrue Holiday (+3000)
  • Jaren Jackson Jr. (+3000)
  • Ben Simmons (+3000)
  • Joel Embiid (+3000)
  • Myles Turner (+4000)
  • Matisse Thybulle (+5000)
  • Alex Caruso (+5000)
  • Chet Holmgren (+5000)
  • Herbert Jones (+6500)

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NBA Defensive Player of the Year Favorites

Rudy Gobert, Minnesota Timberwolves (+500)

Longtime Utah Jazz star Rudy Gobert has found a new home in Minnesota, where he’ll play alongside Karl-Anthony Towns and Anthony Edwards. The franchise’s decision to acquire him was a bold one that could either pay dividends in the near future or hurt the team down the line.

That’s a discussion for another day, though. Here, we’re focusing on whether or not Gobert should be considered the odds-on favorite to win Defensive Player of the Year — and the answer is a resounding yes.

The Stifle Tower is still blocking shots at an elite rate, and after scooping up a career-high 14.7 rebounds per game in 2022, he looks more impactful than ever on the defensive end of the floor. At this point in the offseason, Gobert remains more than worthy of a bet.

Bam Adebayo, Miami Heat (+700)

Bam Adebayo’s case for Defensive Player of the Year is simple: He anchors what has long been one of the best defensive units in basketball. At some point, that needs to count for something — something more than three All-Defensive selections and no award to show for it.

Should Miami further improve on that end of the floor this coming season, voters will have no choice but to turn their attention to Adebayo. Sure, the Heat have other great defenders — Jimmy Butler chief among them — but the defense starts and ends with Adebayo.

A terrific, versatile defender who picks up steals and blocks alike and cleans the glass with ease, Adebayo could have this one locked up by the middle of the season so long as he stays healthy and the Heat stay near the top of the standings.

NBA Defensive Player of the Year Contenders

Robert Williams III, Boston Celtics (+750)

Could one team roster the two most recent winners of this award? That could happen if Robert Williams is named Defensive Player of the Year this coming season, just one removed from Marcus Smart earning the honor.

Williams put his defensive chops on display in the postseason, racking up nearly three blocks per game in the NBA Finals while playing through a knee injury. He’s a dominant interior presence and a big part of the reason why the Celtics allowed the lowest two-point percentage in the NBA in 2021-22.

Should he stay healthy this coming season, he could certainly be in contention to win the award.

Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks (+1000)

Giannis Antetokounmpo is always in contention for a number of awards, and Defensive Player of the Year is right up near the top. The Greek Freak is a five-time All-Defensive Team member and already won this award once in 2019-20.

A do-it-all defender, Antetokounmpo uses his elite size and speed to guard every position on the floor. There may not be a better disruptor in the league given his ability to intercept passes, send away shots at the rim, and lock up some of the very best scorers in the NBA.

Jrue Holiday‘s contributions on this end of the floor could overshadow Antetokounmpo’s campaign a bit. However, if the Bucks can step it up defensively this season, he should be in the conversation throughout the year.

NBA Defensive Player of the Year Sleepers

Ben Simmons, Brooklyn Nets (+3000)

When he’s healthy, Ben Simmons is one of the best defenders in the league. Time will tell if he can return to form after missing the duration of the 2021-22 season and undergoing back surgery, but (+2500) odds is terrific value on a two-time All-Defensive First Teamer.

A stellar on-ball defender and former steals champion, there are few players that Simmons struggles with. He should regularly guard the opposing team’s best player as well, given the state of Brooklyn’s roster.

Putting in his best defensive campaign of his career would be a great way for Simmons to rebound after years of ridicule from fans and his peers. This is a big gamble, but we know what he’s capable of when he’s at his best.

Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers (+3000)

Joel Embiid is among the best two-way stars in the NBA. Not only did he lead the league in scoring in 2021-22, but he’s also earned All-Defensive honors three times throughout his career and has averaged at least a block every year.

Embiid anchors a 76ers defense that regressed this past season, but the potential is there for this team to be elite on that end of the floor. If he can help them post one of the best defensive ratings in the league and protect the paint, he can swoop in and earn the award.

NBA Defensive Player of the Year Prediction

Bam Adebayo, Miami Heat

Adebayo is due for this one. He’s one of the league’s most intelligent defenders and orchestrates a unit that consistently ranks as one of the best in the NBA. As he continues to mature into the leader of this Miami Heat team, he’ll wrap up his first Defensive Player of the Year award in 2023.


Garrett Chorpenning

Garrett Chorpenning is a Digital Content Coordinator for The Game Day. His previous work includes covering the LA Clippers for Sports Illustrated and FanSided.

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