The New Orleans Pelicans almost certainly don’t want to trade franchise player Anthony Davis away. Heck, it’s not even clear he wants out of town.
But he might, and the man known as The Brow only has two more full seasons under team control. After the 2018-19 NBA season, Davis will enter a contract year and will then have the power to opt out and enter free agency.
Should that happen, the Pels would lose one of the best young talents in the league and get nothing in return. Unless the franchise can convince their young star to stay in town on a contract extension (or they trust him to re-sign after exploring free agency), they may feel pressured to deal him for all they can get in return.
The top sports betting sites are certainly buying into that possibility, with SportsBetting.ag, MyBookie.ag, and others shoving out odds on where Anthony Davis could wind up.
Anthony Davis Landing Spot Betting Odds
The first thing to realize is that The Brow isn’t going anywhere this year or next season unless the Pelicans struggle and/or he demands a trade for another reason.
Right now, the Pelicans are among the NBA teams you can bet on making the playoffs, but who knows if that will change?
If he is remotely serious about staying in town long-term, I have to think New Orleans would refrain from rushing him to a decision.
Of course, if the Pelicans catch wind that he may be looking elsewhere once he hits free agency in the summer of 2020, then all bets are off.
Betting is specifically what you’re here for, so let’s first consider how the top basketball betting sites are pricing his odds for his prospective landing spots.
These are two of the best sites currently offering Anthony Davis prop bets, so it’s important to consider which sites you’re most comfortable with, who offers better options, and of course, who lists superior odds.
Is The Brow Leaving?
The first thing you need to figure out is if Anthony Davis is actually going to leave.
There is no reason for the Pelicans to facilitate a deal anytime soon, so one of two things could expedite things: the Pelicans struggling to the point of frustration or New Orleans catching wind that The Brow’s long-term basketball goals reside elsewhere.
Most NBA stars want to get paid, but they also want fame and notoriety in a big market. They also want to win.
New Orleans may only be able to give Davis one of three, so if he’s sick of being that big fish in a small pond and wants to win badly enough, he could understandably bolt for a bigger platform.
LeBron James did it with the Lakers this summer, so literally anyone can do it.
Vegas isn’t alone in projecting Davis onto a new team in the not too distant future. ESPN’s Jalen Rose is on record saying he thinks Davis will be a Laker, and he’s not the only one.
There’s also the interesting case of AD signing on with Klutch Sports. That’s the very agency that represents LeBron James, so that could be one reason to try to connect the dots and get The Brow to Hollywood.
The Pelicans have worked hard to upgrade the roster around Davis, and after a playoff trip last year, this team could actually be headed in the right direction.
Whether or not Davis believes that, of course, is open for debate.
Where Will The Brow Play in 2019-20?
For the sake of this post and the sake of this Anthony Davis prop bet, let’s assume he is indeed leaving.
Even if he’s not there yet mentally, the writing is somewhat on the wall that he could be, and another early playoff exit (or playoff miss) should convince him that leaving town is his best move for his legacy.
Anthony Davis already deems himself to be the best player in the NBA. He’s got the physical talent and the numbers, but he doesn’t have the team success yet.
That is likely going to lead him to a handful of big market teams, and I think in terms of the Pels actually getting something back in any prospective trade, their best bets are the Lakers and Celtics.
How the Lakers Get Davis
The Pels aren’t dealing Brow this season, but if they did, they’d basically have to take on the entire Los Angeles roster.
Financially speaking, that would end up including Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma, Josh Hart, Brandon Ingram, and a bunch of other prospects that haven’t made their mark yet in the league.
That’s peanuts when you’re giving up a monster like The Brow, but when you factor in an already solid core with guys like Jrue Holiday, Nikola Mirotic, and Julius Randle, this would be one fine collection of raw talent.
The Lakers would feel like they’re giving up very little, as they will have expiring contracts, and these young guys don’t cost much money. They could then feasibly bring in arguably the best big man in the game, and they could also try to lure Jimmy Butler or Kawhi Leonard into town.
Suddenly, the hapless Lakers would have a legit Big 3 to work with, and LA could seriously think about chasing down a championship.
Again, I’m not sure how this will look next year, and a deal won’t go down this season, but the Pels would have to take on a lot of bodies to make this work. That is, of course, unless the Lakers acquire a big contract that would be used specifically in a deal like this.
How the Celtics Get Davis
Boston makes more sense to me. The assets are better, the Celtics are closer to winning a championship, and Davis’ prime will line up better with them.
You could argue guys like Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward aren’t untouchable in any prospective deals, but you need to give up something big to get this kind of talent.
I think the Pels probably need Jayson Tatum in any potential deal, so you’re looking at something like Davis for Tatum, Terry Rozier, Jaylen Brown, and Marcus Morris.
If that deal is done today, it works for both sides. Boston gets that massive star to pair with Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward, while the Pels get to start over with three young talents and a solid bench player.
I’m just not sure Celtics GM Danny Ainge does it. He seems to be in love with Tatum, and Boston as constructed looks ready to compete for a title as early as this season. Still, if there is a path to acquiring Davis, this is probably it.
Let’s keep in mind that there are a few more options on MyBookie, including the Any/Field bet at +300. There is also the possibility that The Brow opts to stay in New Orleans for a large portion of his career.
If Davis has fun this year, and the Pels win with this new roster, maybe he just won’t want to abandon his teammates and will even believe he can win in New Orleans.
Ultimately, NBA stars are meant for big markets where they can build their brand and add to their legacy. The Brow has done everything anyone else in the Association could set out to do at the ripe old age of 25, but he’s not in a position to win a title.
Whether he leaves via free agency or through a trade in a year, I think his best bet is in the Eastern Conference. After all, it’s difficult to imagine the Pelicans willingly trading their franchise cornerstone inside their own conference.
If Davis can’t be convinced to stay in New Orleans, my money is on Boston. They have the best assets, they’re close to competing for a title, they’re a solid market, and it would be an amazing opportunity for Davis to add to his already impressive career.
The Celtics also just happen to offer killer betting value at their current +550 price tag at SportsBetting.ag, and that obviously never hurts.
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