With roughly 25% of the games played in the NBA season, this is the perfect time to reassess the Rookie of the Year award market. Before the season, I highlighted six players that still offered some value to win the prize so let’s take a moment to review how those selections stack up thus far. Note that I previously gave each player a buy, hold, or pass recommendation based on their chances, so we’ll compare their preseason odds to the current odds on the market, update our recommendations where needed, and scour the market for any new players to add to our portfolio.
Evan Mobley +290
Mobley was around +800 to win the ROY at the start of the season. My research showed that the award had been dominated by ball handlers of late, with each of the last five winners playing the guard position. As a result, I focused primarily on guards, which meant Mobley ended up on the cutting room floor. However, it’s now clear that the top two players in the draft, Cunningham and Green, are on horrific teams with the two worst records in the league. That immediately elevates Mobley’s chances, given that he’s playing on a Cavaliers team that’s currently tied for the sixth-best record (12-10) in the Eastern Conference. Mobley’s done his part with 14.5 points, 8.2 rebounds, 2.6 assists, and 1.9 blocks per game. That’s as complete as a stat line you’re going to see from any rookie in this draft class. His 17.14 PER is also the highest I’ve come across with the rookies. When you combine his play with Cleveland’s chances of reaching the postseason, I’m surprised it’s Cunningham and not Mobley with the shortest odds on the board.