2023 FIBA Basketball World Cup Futures, Odds, and Best Bets: Basketball is back.

Varun Sharma

Written by: Varun Sharma

Last Updated:

Read Time: 8 minutes

2023 FIBA Basketball World Cup Futures, Odds, and Best Bets: Basketball is back. cover


It’s been about 72 or 73 days since we’ve had meaningful basketball, it’s the World Cup baby, get excited. The tournament has so much talent, both from the NBA and overseas, it’s going to be a lot of fun.

The 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup saw the United States place seventh, their worst tournament finish in USA Basketball history. In the Gold Medal Game we saw Ricky Rubio and Marc Gasol combine for 41 to beat Luis Scola and Argentina. Yeah, read that again, it was 2019.

A 39 year old Luis Scola was playing for the Shanghai Sharks at the time and dropped 28 and 13 in the tournament Semi-Final to beat a French team anchored by Rudy Gobert. On the other side of the bracket, we had 33 points from Gasol to win a double overtime game against the Aussies and Patty Mills, who had 32 of his own.

Like I said, this tournament is going to be fun, especially when we get to the knockout stage. Expect fireworks.

Tournament Rules

As we dive deeper into the tournament, I’m going to start off by explaining the rules, group stages, and bracket. After that we’ll get into some future bets and teams to watch out for.

The tournament is broken down like this: 32 Teams, split into eight groups of four. The First Round we see each team play each other team in their respective group, once. The top two teams will move onto the Second Round.

Now in round two, we see each team regrouped into four groups of four, according to their round one standings. Each team will now play the two new group members, once each. The top two teams in each group will now move onto the Quarter Finals (knockout stage).

It’s a lot, but what better timing to figure it out than now; we’ve got the NBA in-season tournament to look forward to!

Futures, Odds, and Best Bets

Odds Courtesy of Bovada

Can Josh Giddey help lead Patty Mills and the Aussies to a podium finish this year?

Total Assists Leader: Josh Giddey (+600)

Josh Giddey is one of the players I’m most excited to watch as the tournament kicks off tomorrow morning. We watched him take that next step this year in the NBA, going from All-Rookie Second Team, to bonafide starter and potential All-Star.

Giddey’s been given the reigns to this Australian team and it showed during the team’s international friendlies. Giddey put up a near triple double against Venezuela with 14/8R/9A in just 24 minutes (blowout); he followed that up with 12/6/5 and a win, against a much tougher French squad. They overcame a 10 point deficit in the final period to grind out the win.

Josh Giddey put up a near triple double in blowout win against Venezuela

The Aussies, depending on book, currently have the third best odds to win the tournament (+900), just behind France (+800) and the USA (-140). They’re projected to go deep, not only because of their NBA talent, but it’s their chemistry. They take pride in playing for their country, and they’ve played with each other for a long time, at all different levels.

The Boomers (Aus) also happen to be in a group with both Germany and Finland, both squads with elite NBA talent; which should mean for some competitive games.

I get the argument around big names like Luka or Haliburton, but Luka is going to have to carry this Slovenian team offensively, and the Americans are stacked with talent. Give me the value with Giddey.

Total Rebounds Leader: Rudy Gobert (+400)

“Yuck, this is chalk.” Just hear me out though. Rudy is coming off a terrible season in the NBA, if you asked the former two time Defensive Player of the Year he’d probably agree.

Is he older now, has he slowed down? Maybe a little. But have people forgotten how good he can be? Without a doubt. Now he gets the chance to play for his country, back with his French compatriotes, what better time to send out a reminder?

In his last two stints with the French Team, Gobert averaged 9.1 (2019) and 9.3 (2020) rebounds per game; also averaging 9.8 Reb/game in EuroBasket 2022, leading the field w 88, Valanciunas had 63 in 2nd place.

Longevity is big here, the ability to go deep into the tournament matters a lot.

Gobert is the tallest, if not tied for the tallest, starting center in Group H. Their main competition in Group H is Canada, who have Dwight Powell of the Dallas Mavericks, and Zack Edey coming off the bench.

Yeah, I was thinking the same thing, he should eat during the group stage. Biggest competition he’ll see in round two is Spain and the Hernangomez brothers.

France’s depth, combined with how deep they are projected to go, should equal plenty of rebound opportunities for Gobert.

Tournament MVP & Top Scorer

Anthony Edwards is probably the safe bet here, he’s looked phenomenal in the international friendlies, and by far is seeing the highest usage amongst the Americans.

He’s coming off 34 and 21 point games against Germany and Greece, respectively; I just don’t love the value on a (+275) MVP Future. So here’s two guy’s that I think could definitely be in the mix.

International basketball values players that do a little bit of everything. The emphasis is not always as much on scoring as it is winning games, and setting up your team for success. Lots of times that means scoring the ball, but often times it means making the right play, the right pass, or stopping someone defensively.

Brandon Ingram MVP (+650)

The United States are the favorites to win the tournament, so we’ve got to have action on one of the American players right. Although Ingram’s been fairly quiet and passive during the summer friendlies, the fact remains, Brandon Ingram is a walking bucket. He presents matchup problems for the opposition every time he steps onto the court.

Ingram is a great ball handler, he can score (efficiently) from all three levels, and you can lean on him to run the offense. Add to this what he brings defensively. He’s easily about 6’10, despite his listed height, has a with a 7’3 wingspan; he moves laterally with quickness and can meet most guys at the hoop.

This bet really depends on how aggressive he is coming into this tournament. I’ll take a shot on Ingram here for the value.

Josh Giddey MVP (+2000)

I’ve talked way too much about Australia and Josh Giddey, so instead ill add this. The last four FIBA World Cup MVPs were Ricky Rubio, Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant, and Pau Gasol.

Kyrie averaged 12.3 ppg in 2014 when he won, and Durant averaged 22.8 in 2010; the award is obviously more than just scoring.

The value at (+2000) is too high for me to pass up, it’s gonna be a fun one to sweat, especially if Australia really is as good as advertised.

Lauri Markkanen (+900) / Jordan Clarkson (+1100)

Jordan Clarkson’s playing for the home team, can he put on a show for the fans?

This is a points per game bet, not total tournament points. Make sure thats clear when you are placing your wagers, the rebounds and assists props we talked about are tournament totals.

Same pitch for both guys here, by far the most talented guys on their respective teams, both with the green light to shoot to their hearts desire.

Markkanen is coming into this tournament after serving in the Finnish Army during the off-season; guess you could say he really wants to be there. After everything we watched him do this past NBA Season, I just can’t help but think we see at least two to three, 30 point games from the Finnish big man.

The lack of second scoring option for the Finnish team makes me love Lauri even more. He’s going to have bear the scoring load for the most part, especially if Finland wants to make it passed the group stage.

Jordan Clarkson has been averaging closer to 30 in these international friendlies, and if you’ve seen him play internationally, you know why. He loves to put on a show, and there’s not a shot he won’t take.

This is a points/game bet, so even if the Philippines don’t go deep, all we need is a few big games from Clarkson during the group stage, which we could very realistically see; with games against Angola, the Dominican Republic, and Italy.

The Phillippines are one of the three host countries, and the home team’s playing all three, first round games “at home.” Like, of course, we have to bet this.

Who’s taking home the Gold Medal?

I won’t talk about the American squad, feel like they don’t really need an intro. But we’re looking for value, and that ain’t value.

This is probably Canada’s most talented squad, can they make some noise?

Spain, the reigning champs, are coming into this tournament a little shorthanded compared to 2019; playing without both Marc Gasol and Ricky Rubio. Despite losing arguably their two best players, they were Winners at EuroBasket 2022; and now enter the World Cup as a bit of a sleeper candidate.

Be careful with this Spanish team, despite their EuroBasket crown, the field of play here at the World Cup is different. Combine that with the fact that Spain will probably see both Canada and France in second round of the tournament, it’s a recipe for second round exit.

Canada (+1000)

Call it a homer pick, but this is by far the best team Canada has ever fielded. You’ve got Shai starting at the point guard spot, alongside RJ Barrett and Dillon Brooks, and Dwight Powell clogging up the paint. You’ve got one of the best on ball defenders in the tournament, coming off your bench in Luguentz Dort; with Kelly Olynyk and Nickeil Alexander-Walker rounding off the list of NBA talent.

The odds are just good enough where I’m willing to ride the value with MY home team. Go Canada!

Australia (+900)

I’ve talked a lot about the Boomers already, so I won’t bore you with too much more. Australia was a double overtime game away from the Gold Medal game in 2019, now they’ve only gotten better, younger, and hungrier. Oh and they added this kid named Josh Giddey, he’s pretty good at basketball.

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Varun Sharma
Varun Sharma

You may know me as ‘VSaaauce’. I’ve been a die hard hoops fan my entire life. I’ve been betting on the NBA/NCAAB/NFL/MLB for six years now, each year gaining more and more knowledge about being a profitable handicapper. I’m eager to learn, and eager to pass on everything I’ve gained over the last few years. I started my Twitter page four years ago, and this community makes me so thankful I did. Outside of sports and handicapping, I enjoy traveling, hoopin, a strong espresso and I’m currently studying to obtain my MD. I’m all about the vibes, good vibes only. If that sounds like you, follow me on 'X' @VSaaauce.

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