The Tokyo Summer Olympics is a week away and if the COVID-19 run-up to the event is any indicator, it will be a dramatic and surreal event. With Japan entering a COVID-19 state of emergency, there will not be any spectators allowed in stadiums. How this will affect athletes’ performances is anyone’s guess, though Team Japan seems most likely to suffer from the loss of fans. Still, simply holding the event is an accomplishment, especially with all events moving forward. What that means is that there will be tons of opportunities to open up those online betting apps. It will be fourteen days worth of madness.
On July 1, sports betting in VA got the green light to begin accepting wagers online. This is a massive opportunity for the citizens of the Old Dominion to have some safe fun at home or among a handful of friends. (Maybe steer clear from the massive crowds until the Delta variant is finished doing it’s thing?) The Tokyo Olympics will also be a massive chance for Virginia’s nascent online sports betting industry that has been the envy of governors across the country. With less than a year under its belt, VA sports betting has pulled in over $1 billion forth of taxable income for the state.
It’s great time to be joining any one of the online sportsbooks on offer in Virginia. They’re all offering significant sign-up bonuses.
- Draft Kings: $1,050.
- FanDuel: $1000.
- BetMGM: $600.
- William Hill: $500.
- Unibet: $500.
- BetRivers: $250.
Pretty good eh? Now, let’s make believe we were putting it all down on an event. We’ll go with DraftKings since they pipped FanDuel by $50 since we’re all about the extra dollars. For the sake of convenience, we’ll keep it to sports we cover regularly in DATA DEPENDENT. We’ll do basketball first. Who are your picks to medal?
It’s no secret Team USA has struggled during its past few games. They’ve lost two of their last three exhibition games to Nigeria and Australia but have won their last game against Argentina. Interestingly, both Nigeria and Australia have good number of NBA players (former or current) on their squads. This matters in two significant ways. Firstly, they’re obviously pretty good since the NBA remains the premier location for ballers to play. Secondly, their players will be familiar with the American squad and any intimidation factor should be pretty much nil (if that even happens anymore).
For your reference, here are the official FIBA rankings followed by a quick introduction to the teams playing in Tokyo.
|IOC||CURRENT POINTS||+/- RANK *|
(NOTE: Slovenia, Japan, Germany, Nigeria, Italy, and Iran are all outside of the Top 10. Their ranking are included in the team summaries below.)
(FIBA: 3; MONEY: +1200)
Australia have shown what they’re capable of during their victory of Team USA. They’ve got a number of NBA players led by Joe Ingles. They play fellow giant-slayers Nigeria in their first first game in what should be a juicy match-up. They’re in a tough group with Italy, Nigeria, and Germany.
|Patrick Mills||PG||San Antonio|
|Duop Reath||C||Crvena Zvezda|
(FIBA: 42; MONEY: +30000)
If Japan wasn’t the host nation, they probably wouldn’t have made it into the tournament. Washington Wizards’ Rui Hachimura leads the team and will be the focus of most teams’ defensive efforts. They take on a very strong Spanish side for their first game. Spain’s -3000 line suggests nobody expects anything from Japan’s effors. Their best chances of picking off a win is against Luka Doncic and Slovenia. Spain and Argentina are untouchable here.
|Gavin Edwards||PF||Chiba Jets|
|Tenketsu Harimoto||SF||Nagoya DD|
|Makoto Hiejima||SG||Tochigi Brex|
|Kosuke Kanamaru||SG||SeaHorses Mikawa|
|Avi Koki Schafer||C||Shiga Lakestars|
|Daiki Tanaka||SG||Alvark Tokyo|
|Yuki Togashi||PG||Chiba Jets|
|Leo Vendrame||PG||Sun Rockers Shibuya|
|Hugh Watanabe||PF||UC Davis|
(FIBA: 4; MONEY: +400)
The strongest side to come out of South America. They’re grouped with Spain, Slovenia, and Japan. Should finish second in their group. Argentina plays Slovenia for their first game. Surprisingly, smart money has them as underdogs due to the Luka Effect.
|Lautaro Berra||C||Obras Sanitarias|
|Gabriel Deck||SF||Oklahoma City|
|Maximo Fjellerup||SG||San Lorenzo|
|Nicolas Laprovittola||PG||Real Madrid|
|Juan Pablo Vaulet||SF||Manresa|
|Luca Vildoza||PG||New York|
(FIBA: 12; MONEY: +10000)
The Czechs face-off against TEAM USA in their first match. On paper, they shouldn’t win. They probably won’t.
|Patrik Auda||C||Yokohama B-Corsairs|
|Patrick Samoura||SG||Cochise College|
(FIBA: 7; MONEY: +1600)
France have a solid team with a number of NBA players. Defensive juggernaut Rudy Gobert should ensure the rim is adequately protected. Frank Ntilikina is another solid defender. Question is, who’ll be hitting shots on the other end?
|Andrew Albicy||PG||Gran Canaria|
|Nicolas Batum||SF||LA Clippers|
|Petr Cornelie||PF||Pau Orthez|
|Nando De Colo||SG||Fenerbahce|
|Frank Ntilikina||PG||New York|
|Vincent Poirier||C||Real Madrid|
(FIBA: 17; MONEY: +10000)
Germany are neither here nor there. They don’t suck but they’re not great either. The moneyline tells you everything you need to know. They’re paired with Australia for their first game. Should be a loss.
|Niels Giffey||SF||ALBA Berlin|
|Maodo Lo||PG||ALBA Berlin|
|Johannes Thiemann||PF||ALBA Berlin|
|Johannes Voigtmann||C||CSKA Moscow|
|Jan Niklas Wimberg||PF||Chemitz|
(FIBA: 23; MONEY: +50000)
Not expected to do much. Maybe the lack of expectations can work in their favor though. That said, for a potentially offensively challenged team, playing a good French defensive side isn’t the best way to start a run.
|Saeid Davarpanah||SG||Naft Abadan|
|Aaron Geramipoor||C||Manchester Giants|
|Mohammad Hassazadeh||PF||Naft Abadan|
|Samad Nikkhah Bahrami||SF||Mahram|
(FIBA: 10; MONEY: +4500)
Italy is always a solid basketball country and they have a few NBA players. They have a tricky matchup against Nigeria for their first game. The country has had a good run in other sports this year. Spain won the Euros and had a finalist at Wimbledon. Can they add the Olympics to their list?
|Simone Fontecchio||SF||ALBA Berlin|
|Nico Mannion||PG||Golden State|
|Riccardo Moraschini||SG||Olimpia Milano|
|Alessandro Pajola||PG||Virtus Bologna|
|Giampaolo Ricci||SF||Virtus Bologna|
|Amedeo Tessitori||C||Virtus Bologna|
(FIBA: 22; MONEY: +3000)
Could Nigeria be the Olympic dark horse? If they keep playing like they did against Team USA and rain down 3’s, it’s hard to see why not. Will they win the entire thing? Probably not. Will they make a run into the Knock-out stages? Probably
|Caleb Agada||SG||Hapoel Beer Sheva|
|Stan Okoye||SF||Gran Canaria|
|Ekpe Udoh||C||Beijing RF|
(FIBA: 16; MONEY: +2000)
Luka Doncic. That’s all we have to say.
|Jaka Blazic||SG||Union Olimpija|
|Jakob Cebasek||SF||Dinamo Bucuresti|
|Ziga Dimec||C||Union Olimpija|
|Edo Muric||SF||Union Olimpija|
|Luka Rupnik||PG||Union Olimpija|
(FIBA: 2; MONEY: +1100)
If there’s a team ready to make a gold medal run against Team USA, it’s Spain. They’ve got a number of NBA players and also players in one of Europe’s top leagues.
|Alberto Abalde||SF||Real Madrid|
|Carlos Alocen||PG||Real Madrid|
|Rudy Fernandez||SF||Real Madrid|
|Usman Garuba||PF||Real Madrid|
|Marc Gasol||C||LA Lakers|
|Willy Hernangomez||C||New Orleans|
|Sergio Llull||PG||Real Madrid|
|Sergio Rodriguez||PG||Olimpia Milano|
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
(FIBA: 1; MONEY: -550)
Team USA is the odds on favorite to win gold but as their recent losses show, they can be beat. If this current squad continues to struggle on the defensive end, it could be a long Olympics for them. At the time of this article, Kevin Love has pulled out due to injury. It would be wise to replace him with a defensive enforcer.
|Draymond Green||PF||Golden State|