Some of your favorite basketball players won’t be restricted to their couches for the foreseeable future with the NBA, WNBA and its players set to have a H-O-R-S-E Challenge, starting on Sunday, April 12.

The details for this event have just been released and NBA all-stars like Chris Paul and Trae Young, retired all-star Paul Pierce and WNBA legend Tamika Catchings are among those set to compete to determine who is the best trick-shot master.

Online sportsbooks want in on the action and newly released betting odds have Trae Young as the +200 betting favorite to win, according to Bovada. Chris Paul opened as a co-favorite with Young but has since moved to +285.

As the only current NBA all-stars in the H-O-R-S-E Challenge, Paul will face WNBA all-star Allie Quigley in the first round while Young will take on former NBA Finals MVP Chauncey Billups. Since the chances of seeing an NBA champion in 2020 are shrinking by the day, this could help fill the void for basketball fans starved for action.

The format for the game, broadcast schedule, matchups and a refresher on H-O-R-S-E are all listed below but for now, here are the full betting odds for which of the eight hoopsters will be the H-O-R-S-E champion:

NBA H-O-R-S-E Challenge Betting Odds
Player Odds
Trae Young +200
Chris Paul +285
Zach LaVine +400
Mike Conley Jr. +450
Paul Pierce +600
Chauncey Billups +900
Allie Quigley +1100
Tamika Catchings +1600

Odds as of April 12 at Bovada

Competition Format and Broadcast Schedule

The NBA H-O-R-S-E Challenge will begin on Sunday, April 12, at 7 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on ESPN. It will feature eight NBA, WNBA and former players with four matchups set to take place on the first day.

Participants will be divided into two groups of four, with the winners of the first two games in each group meeting in the semifinals. The semifinals and championship round are to air on ESPN on Thursday, April 16, starting at 9 p.m. ET.

Here is the Day 1 broadcast schedule and matchups:

NBA H-O-R-S-E Challenge by ESPN
  • Date/Time: Sunday April 12, 7-9 p.m. ET
  • Group 1, Matchup 1: Trae Young vs Chauncey Billups
  • Group 1, Matchup 2: Tamika Catchings vs Mike Conley Jr.
  • Group 2, Matchup 3: Zach LaVine vs Paul Pierce
  • Group 2, Matchup 4: Chris Paul vs Allie Quigley

Who goes first in each matchup is determined by a coin toss at the start of the game. The more senior player gets to call heads or tails. Players have to call their shot – like a bank shot or a reverse layup – before each shot attempt.

No dunking is allowed and the first player in each game to accumulate the letters “H-O-R-S-E” by failing to match five shots is eliminated.

Matchup Betting Odds

BetOnline has released betting odds for each first-round matchup with Mike Conley Jr. opening as the biggest fave at -500 vs Tamika Catchings, who comes back at +300.

All four matchups and their odds are listed below and Odds Shark will continue to monitor the odds until they tip off. 

NBA H-O-R-S-E Challenge: First-round Odds
Player Odds
Trae Young -200
Chauncey Billups +150

Odds as of April 12 at BetOnline

NBA H-O-R-S-E Challenge: First-round Odds
Player Odds
Tamika Catchings +300
Mike Conley Jr. -500

Odds as of April 12 at BetOnline

NBA H-O-R-S-E Challenge: First-round Odds
Player Odds
Zach LaVine -110
Paul Pierce -130

Odds as of April 12 at BetOnline

NBA H-O-R-S-E Challenge: First-round Odds
Player Odds
Chris Paul -300
Allie Quigley +200

Odds as of April 12 at BetOnline

What Is H-O-R-S-E?

For bettors not familiar with the game of H-O-R-S-E, here is a refresher in case you’ve never played. H-O-R-S-E is a basketball shooting game in which players take turns shooting at the hoop from different locations. If someone makes a shot, the other competitors have to hit the same shot from the same spot or they get a letter toward the word HORSE. 

The first person to complete the word is eliminated from the competition and the goal is to make shots and avoid getting enough letters to spell the word. The NBA has made this a 1 vs 1 contest and uses a player that also participated in the NBA 2K Players-Only Tournament in Trae Young.

How Bettors Should Approach The Competition

If you recall, when the NBA held H-O-R-S-E games for NBA All-Star Weekend in 2009 and 2010, Kevin Durant won both times when he was with the Oklahoma City Thunder. No dunking was allowed and players had 24 seconds to create or mimic shots. 

These players are among the best of the best so bettors should expect some crazy trick shots from obscene distances. The contestants will be in isolation and shooting from their own home court and while it’s difficult to determine a betting strategy, long-range bombers like Trae Young and Zach LaVine may have the edge in this format.

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