The 2020-21 NBA season is underway and this year’s Defensive Player of the Year race could be interesting. We’ve identified a pair of candidates on DraftKings Sportsbook who are on the rise and another who are off to slow starts.
Myles Turner, Indiana Pacers (+4000)
Turner is might not be as versatile as some of the other candidates in the running but has been flat-out ridiculous when it comes to defending his team’s hoop as of late. He’s averaging a staggering 3.7 blocks per game and notched a season-high of 8 in Indiana’s first game of the year. The last time a player averaged 3.7 or more blocks per game. Turner is also jumping the passing lanes and is averaging a career-high 1.7 steals per game. It’ll be hard for him to keep up this pace but someone’s bound to notice if he does.
Bam Adebayo, Miami Heat (+1000)
Adebayo made his first NBA All-Defensive team last season and has had to step things up in 2020. Few bigs are able to guard smaller players on the perimeter as well as Adebayo and he doesn’t have the same lofty expectations that Anthony Davis, Giannis Antetokounmpo, and Rudy Gobert have. He might not lead the league in blocks or steals, but he's on the DPOY radar more than ever and his skill set makes him capable of putting stars in the torture chamber for stretches.
Draymond Green, Golden State Warriors (+6000)
The Warriors are giving up a league-high 124 points per game and Green is still working back into things after missing the first four games of the season. While Green is an impactful defender it’s unlikely that he’ll transform one of the worst defenses in the NBA into one of the best given all of Golden State’s flaws.
Pascal Siakam, Toronto Raptors (+8000)
The Raptors gave up fewer points per game than any team in the NFL in 2019-20 but have been notable worse so far this year. Siakam was one of Toronto’s defensive anchors but has fouled out in two straight contests and seems to be lacking the discipline to keep himself on the court. Rumors of a potential trade are swirling and that can only hurt his DPOY case.
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