The 2022 Skills Challenge offers a new format featuring three teams competing against each other in a series of skill competitions. The top two teams will advance to the final round, which is a timed half-court shot. This event will start at 8:00 p.m. ET on Saturday, February 19. The three teams will be Rookies (Cade Cunningham, Josh Giddey, Scottie Barnes), Cavaliers (Jarrett Allen, Darius Garland, Evan Mobley) and Antetokounmpos (Giannis, Alex, Thanasis). We go over the best bets for this event, with odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.
Favorite Pick: Rookies, -125
Given the skills needed across the board to make the final round, the Rookies are deservedly favored to win. Cunningham, Barnes and Giddey all possess the versatility to excel in each round, with the half-court shot being a random event anyway. We’ll see if they have any sort of chemistry issues but that shouldn’t be an issue based on the way the competition is set up.
Darkhorse Pick: Antetokounmpos, +320
Both the Antetokounmpos and Cavaliers are plus money, but let’s go with the brothers as the darkhorse pick. Giannis is playing at a MVP level once again but it’s unclear whether he can singlehandedly power his team through the competition. It’s also unclear if Thanasis and Alex have the skills needed to make it through the competitions as quickly as the other teams. If you’re going to go with a plus-money team, you might as well go with the greater underdogs.
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