Tomorrow is the day: Eurobasket 2009 finally tips off. Naturally, Euroleague/Ball in Europe sponsor SportingBet.com has a plethora of odds and lines for your amusement, including some intriguing fodder for discussion in the form of individual-awards proposition bets.
So you think you know not only who’s going to stand atop the podium when it’s over, but who’ll be tournament MVP, top scorer, top rebounder, top passer, eh? Care to make it interesting?
If you think Spain is going to cruise through this tournament, immolating teams along the way with ease, you’re not alone. You’ll also have a heck of a time deciding which Spaniard will be holding the MVP trophy at the end of this one.
You can choose between six of the top 10 favorites to take the trophy: Pau Gasol (5/3 to win the award), Juan Carlos Navarro (16/5), Rudy Fernandez (18/1), Felipe Reyes (22/1), Marc Gasol (22/1) and Ricky Rubio (25/1). The lowest odds for non-Team Spain members include Tony Parker (9/1), Vassilis Spanoulis (14/1), and Hedo Turkoglu (16/1).
BiE prediction: Even if Spain takes it all (which is also not a 100% convincing scenario), they won’t cruise. And since we’ve already got Lithuania penned in as a surprise, the advice here is to throw a few Euros at Linas Kleiza (20/1). Despite his (mostly unappreciated) great play in the NBA, this dude has yet to really break loose and establish himself as one of the world’s elite. He will in this tournament.
It’s hard to argue a longshot against the current top five favorites Parker (41/20), Navarro (16/5), Pau (7/2), Turkoglu (12/1), and Kleiza (16/1) – i mean, it’s gotta be one of these guys, right?
At just over 2/1 payout, Parker would appear to be the pick here, given the man’s propensity for taking over in important international games. Also tempting is Turkoglu, who’s certainly the best bet in this tournament to lead his own team in points.
(Anybody like Boris Diaw at 125/1, by the way…?)
Think this one’s up for grabs? Take a look at the tiptop of Sporting Bet’s table:
Andris Biedrins: 7/2
Ersan Ilyasova: 21/5
Ioannis Bourousis: 6/1
Pau Gasol: 7/1
Marcin Gortat: 8/1
Erazem Lorbek: 11/1
Rony Turiaf: 14/1 (down from 16/1)
Marc Gasol: 16/1
Darius Lavrinovic: 18/1
Nenad Krstic: 20/1
Lior Eliyahu: 20/1
Covering Biedrins here would not be a move for the faint-hearted: After all, it doesn’t take much imagination to forecast Latvia maybe surviving three games but definitely not four. Logic would therefore dictate that Bourousis is the smartest bet if only because most have Greece making the final four at least, but quite a few names on the above list could contend in this category under this premise. Play Bourousis if you will, but hedge with at least one of the others above as well.
Of note, though perhaps questionable significance: the line of 14/1 on Turiaf’s is down from 16/1 when these prop bets were first posted.
Guess who? Yep, it’s another Parker-Rubio showdown, with Tony the favorite by a sliver-then margin of 11/4 to 3/1. You gotta like either of two here; some good insurance could be provided with a small covering of Roko Ukic at 8/1. (He’ll be starting off against Greece, Macedonia and Israel — yeah, Ukic can grab a few boards in the first round, methinks.)
For more information on these bets and lots of others concerning Eurobasket 2009, click on the logo or banner at right for more information.
Tomorrow: Who can you bet on to take it all…?