It may not be the most glamorous among the end-of-season awards, but the newly minted Los Angeles Laker Carmelo Anthony would be lying if he said winning the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year wouldn’t be a career highlight. The 37-year-old Anthony joins the veteran Los Angeles team that has been built in such a way that anything less than a championship would be a disappointment.
The Lakers are currently the Western Conference favorite and at +400 odds to win the NBA title for the second time in three seasons. Los Angeles is just behind the New Jersey Nets at +240 and well ahead of the rest of the league in terms of odds.
— Lakers News (@lakers_news) September 6, 2021
Teams that get the most out of their bench players tend to go deep in the playoffs, and no team is constructed to use their bench more than the 2021-22 Los Angeles Lakers. Los Angeles completely overhauled its roster in the off-season, bringing in a number of productive veterans, any of which could make a run at the NBA Sixth Man of the Year Award this coming season.
NBA Sixth Man Awards Odds
According to the current Illinois Sports Betting Guide, the defending Sixth Man of the Year Jordan Clarkson is the +500 favorite to win the award again this season. Clarkson ran away from the competition last year in becoming the first Utah Jazz player to receive such an honor. He finished the year as the team’s second-best scorer, averaging 18.4 points a game while playing 26.7 efficient minutes coming off the bench.
Oddsmakers have Atlanta Hawk swingman Kevin Huerter and Clarkson’s teammate Joe Ingles as second favorites, both at +1000.
Many see Brooklyn Net guard Patty Mills the value pick is +1200. Throughout Mill’s 12-year NBA career he has been a rotation player, and during his last 10-seasons in San Antonio, he’s been the glue that’s held the team together from the bench.
Now with a Nets team that lacked depth in the 2020-21 NBA season, Mills could be the answer and go-to player at point guard behind Kyrie Irving. Mills’ showing at the Tokyo Olympics is proof that the veteran guard still got it.
During the offseason, the Toronto Raptors added veteran Goran Dragic who is positioned to make a difference coming off the bench, while the Sacramento Kings 2020 first-round draft pick Tyrese Haliburton is expected to get more minutes in a supporting role. Both players are at +1600 and along with Chicago Bull Coby White and New York Knicks Derrick Rose, round out the top odds picks.
Lakers Sixth Man
The only Los Angeles Laker to win the NBA Sixth Man of the Year Award was Lamar Odem back in 2011. Given the depth of this year’s Lakers team and how Frank Vogel likes to use his bench, no Laker cracks the Top-10 in terms of odds to win the award.
This season Kendrick Nunn leads all Lakers at +2200, with Carmello Anthony second at +3000, and followed by Talen Horton-Tucker at +8000.
Nunn was a salary cap victim in Miami when the Heat signed the veteran free-agent Kyle Lowry and let him walk away from restricted free agency. Nunn signed for less money to join the Lakers on the mid-level exception, and the 26-year-old is expected to get heavy minutes off the bench. This past season Nunn averaged 14.6 points, 3.2 rebounds, and 2.6 assists per game.
Similar numbers would put him in the award discussion for sure.
Carmelo Anthony believes the Lakers' experience is the key.
— Basketball Forever (@Bballforeverfb) September 15, 2021
2021-22 6th Man—Odds Leaders