2020 Emmy Awards Betting Preview


Emmy nominations were officially unveiled on Tuesday. The 72nd annual Primetime Emmys are slated to take place on September 20. The ceremony will presumably look a little different this year with everything going on in the United States, but the awards still present ample wagering opportunities for entertainment bettors.

HBO’s and Netflix’s “Watchmen” led all nominees with 11 nominations, while “Succession” picked up 10, and “Ozark” racked up nine. Netflix wound up totaling 160 nominations, which shattered the previous record for one studio, network, or streaming service. HBO held the previous record, and this year HBO came in second with 107 total nominations.

We’ve got no shortage of huge names populating the field of nominees for the 2020 Emmys. The show is still about two months away, so you still have plenty of time to catch up on any shows you may have missed. SportsBetting.ag was quick to slap odds on the awards. So let’s break down the candidates and try to uncover some entertainment betting value for the Emmys, shall we?

Best Supporting Actress (Drama)

Nominee Odds at SportsBetting.ag
Helena Bonham Carter -600
Julia Garner +400
Laura Dern +800
Meryl Streep +1000
Sarah Snook +1200
Samira Wiley +3300
Fiona Shaw +4000
Thandie Newton +4000

First off, any time you see Meryl Streep as a +1000 underdog for anything, she’s probably worth at least a flier. She seems to win every award under the sun, so taking a stab at arguably Hollywood’s most decorated actress at long odds is never necessarily a bad plan. However, “Big Little Lies” didn’t live up to the lofty expectations many had for it in its second season, which court harm her chances.

That said, Helena Bonham Carter is a massive -600 favorite here with good reason. This is a category that has been dominated in terms of nominations by Game of Thrones in recent years, but no GoT actress went on to win the award. Last year, Ozark’s Julia Garner took home the prize for her excellent portrayal as Ruth Langmore. Garner has the second-best odds to repeat as the winner at +400, but we haven’t had a back-to-back winner in the Best Supporting Actress (Drama) category since Anna Gunn pulled it off in 2013 and 2014 for “Breaking Bad.”

Thandie Newton won this two years ago for “Westworld,” so it’s a little interesting that she faces the longest odds this time around (+4000).

Carter has two Academy Award nominations, eight Golden Globe nominations, and three Emmy nominations to her name, but she is still looking to take home her first award. She has done a phenomenal job of picking up where Vanessa Kirby left off as Princess Margaret in “The Crown.” While she’s a worthy favorite, I’m not sure the -600 odds are necessarily warranted.

If you’re betting on the Emmys, why not shoot for value? Meryl Streep at +1000 is too good to ignore.

The Bet
Meryl Streep

Best Supporting Actress (Comedy)

Nominee Odds at SportsBetting.ag
Alex Borstein -700
Kate McKinnon +500
Annie Murphy +800
Marin Hinkle +1200
Betty Gilpin +2000
D’Arcy Carden +2000
Yvonne Orji +2500
Cecily Strong +3300

“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” is in position to clean up at this year’s Emmys, and Alex Borstein is looking to win her third straight trophy in this very category. She’s actually the third person in a row to win Best Supporting Actress (Comedy) twice in a row, following Kate McKinnon (2016 and 2017) from “Saturday Night Live” and Allison Janney (2014 and 2015) for “Mom.”

While Borstein does have plenty of legitimate competition here, the field isn’t quite as decorated as the Drama group. One surprise is that Jane Lynch didn’t earn a nomination in this category, but Borstein’s other co-star, Marin Hinkle, is here for the second year in a row. Annie Murphy of “Schitt’s Creek” has a legitimate claim, as does McKinnon, who seems to be in the race every year.

This is just Borstein’s to lose. There is almost no value in taking a shot on her current -700 odds, but it’s almost impossible to imagine any other actress claiming the trophy.

The Bet
Alex Borstein

Best Supporting Actor (Drama)

Nominee Odds at SportsBetting.ag
Billy Crudup +125
Kieran Culkin +125
Bradley Whitford +300
Matthew Macfayden +900
Giancarlo Esposito +1200
Jeffrey Wright +3300
Mark Duplass +3300
Nicholas Braun +3300

Three of “Succession’s” 10 nominations come in the Best Supporting Actor (Drama) category alone. Kieran Culkin checks-in tied for the best odds overall at +125, followed by Matthew Macfayden (+900) and Nicholas Braun (+3300). We’ll finally have a new winner here with Peter Dinklage’s run on “Game of Thrones” having come to a close. Dinklage claimed this prize four times with eight nominations, which makes him the all-time leader in both categories.

Jonathan Banks has been an annual nominee for his role in “Better Call Saul” over the past few years, but his co-star, Giancarlo Esposito, was the only one to earn a nomination this time around.

Billy Crudup is interestingly a co-favorite at +125. While “The Morning Show” received fairly mixed praise, critics thought Crudup was one of the show’s strong points. Culkin has won a pair of Golden Globes for his portrayal of the brash Roman Roy in “Succession,” and I think this is the year he finally breaks through with his first Emmy triumph. The odds may shrink from here, so get him at plus-money while you still can.

The Bet
Kieran Culkin

Best Supporting Actor (Comedy)

Nominee Odds at SportsBetting.ag
Tony Shalhoub -600
Dan Levy +400
Alan Arkin +700
Kenan Thompson +1400
Sterling K. Brown +1600
Mahershala Ali +2500
Andre Braugher +3300
William Jackson Harper +3300

Tony Shalhoub of “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” is seeking to become the first back-to-back winner of this award since Jeremy Piven three-peated for his role in “Entourage” in the middle of the previous decade. Three different actors have won twice in the past decade, but none of them have won in consecutive years.

It’s hard to argue against Shalhoub when Emmy Awards betting, especially given the -600 odds. Still, I’ll make a case for “Schitt’s Creek’s” Dan Levy, who was one of the creative influences behind one of the more popular shows of the past few years. The fact that the show just aired its final season could give it a little extra oomph with voters wanting to show it a little love where there is still time. This is Levy’s first nomination. Interestingly enough, “Modern Family’s” extensive cast of supporting actors all failed to make the cut in that show’s final season.

Sterling K. Brown and Mahershala Ali are formidable candidates considering they’re two of the more well-regarded young actors in Hollywood, but it’s difficult to make a real case for anyone other than Shalhoub here. If you want a value option, go with Levy at +400. Otherwise, Shalhoub is your best bet.

The Bet
Tony Shalhoub

Best Lead Actress (Drama)

Nominee Odds at SportsBetting.ag
Laura Linney -175
Olivia Colman +125
Jennifer Aniston +400
Jodie Comer +1600
Sandra Oh +4000
Zendaya +4000

Laura Linney has emerged as the early favorite to win Best Lead Actress (Drama) for her outstanding work alongside Jason Bateman in “Ozark.” Last year’s winner, Jodie Comer, has the fourth-best odds at +1600. We haven’t had a repeat winner here since Clare Danes did it for “Homeland” in 2012 and 2013, so the odds are understandably stacked against Comer.

Olivia Colman won the Golden Globe in this category earlier this year, while Jennifer Aniston did the same at the Screen Actors Guild Awards. As mentioned previously, though, I’m not sure how eager voters will be to reward “The Morning Show.” If Crudup winds up winning for Best Supporting Actor, I’m not sold Aniston will do the same in this category.

While Linney is quite deserving, I think Colman makes for the better value option at +125.

The Bet
Olivia Colman

Best Lead Actress (Comedy)

Nominee Odds at SportsBetting.ag
Catherine O’Hara -350
Rachel Brosnahan +250
Christina Applegate +500
Issa Rae +1000
Linda Cardellini +1600
Tracee Ellis Ross +3300

Moira Rose is one of the strangest characters you’ll ever see, which is why Catherine O’Hara was the perfect choice to pull it off. Her last and only Emmy win came way back in 1982, but that was a writing award. She has never won an Emmy for her acting, but this is pretty clearly her best opportunity.

“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’s” Rachel Brosnahan won the award in 2018 following Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ six-year run, while Phoebe Waller-Bridge won it last year for “Fleabag.” Waller-Bridge isn’t eligible this year, however, which makes Brosnahan look like a very intriguing plus-money option at +250. “Mrs. Maisel” is favored to win several Emmys this year, yet the actual star of the show isn’t among those favorites.

This looks like a two-woman race. O’Hara may be the sentimental favorite at -350, but I’m more than happy to take the value on Brosnahan at +250.

The Bet
Rachel Brosnahan

Best Lead Actor (Drama)

Nominee Odds at SportsBetting.ag
Brian Cox -250
Jason Bateman +150
Jeremy Strong +1000
Billy Porter +1200
Sterling K. Brown +1400
Steve Carell +2000

Brian Cox absolutely must win this award. Jason Bateman’s work on “Ozark” speaks for itself, but given all of the “Succession” love we have seen, I’d have a hard time imagining anybody other than the show’s lead winning Best Lead Actor (Drama). Jeremy Strong is a decent flier option on the same show, but Cox is a worthy favorite.

Billy Porter is back at +1200 after winning this award last year for Pose, but no actor has won this award twice in a row since Brian Cranston won three straight for “Breaking Bad” between 2008 and 2010. Sterling K. Brown was great as usual in “This Is Us”, but, again, this feels like Brian Cox’s year.

The Bet
Brian Cox

Best Lead Actor (Comedy)

Nominee Odds at SportsBetting.ag
Eugene Levy -500
Ted Danson +300
Michael Douglas +800
Don Cheadle +1200
Anthony Anderson +1400
Ramy Youssef +1400

No Larry David? For shame. Somehow, Larry hasn’t been nominated for an Emmy during the entire run of “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” which is mind-boggling.

As is the case with the Drama category, we have a sizable favorite with “Schitt’s Creek’s” Eugene Levy at -500 to take home the trophy for Best Lead Actor (Comedy). Bill Hader won this for “Barry” last year, but season three of the show won’t premier in time for “Barry” to be represented at this year’s Emmys, unfortunately. So, Hader’s run of two straight wins will come to a close in 2020.

Ted Danson has racked up 14 nominations over the course of his career for “Cheers” and “The Good Place”, and he’s here again as a +300 underdog to pick up his third win. This would be his first win for “The Good Place”, however.

As is the case with O’Hara, Levy hasn’t won an Emmy since doing so for SCTV back in the early-1980s. Ramy Youssef won the Golden Globe in this category for “Ramy” earlier this year, but oddsmakers don’t like his chances of doing the same at the Emmys (+1400).

Levy is fine, but you’re getting no bang for your buck at -500. Back Danson at +300 instead.

The Bet
Ted Danson

Outstanding Drama Series

Nominee Odds at SportsBetting.ag
Succession -150
Ozark +200
The Crown +400
Better Call Saul +800
The Handmaid’s Tale +1600
Stranger Things +2500
Killing Eve +3300
The Mandalorian +3300

“Game of Thrones” won Best Drama Series last year despite the fact that seemingly everyone hated the final season. That was “GoT’s” fourth win in five years in this category, but it’s obviously not eligible this time around. So, we’ll have a new winner in 2020.

“The Crown” and “Succession” have racked up plenty of praise, while “Ozark” has the second-best odds here at +200. “Succession” took home the corresponding prize at this year’s Golden Globes, just ahead of “Big Little Lies,” “The Crown,” “Killing Eve,” and “The Morning Show.”

“Succession” just seems to have built up a lot of momentum, which makes the show a worthy favorite here at -150. “Ozark” looks like the slightly better value option than “The Crown,” though either one could be worth a low-dollar dart throw. “Better Call Saul” could get some late praise, but let’s keep it rolling with the “Succession” theme.

The Bet

Outstanding Comedy Series

Nominee Odds at SportsBetting.ag
Schitt’s Creek -125
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel +125
Curb Your Enthusiasm +800
The Good Place +1000
Dead To Me +1200
The Kominsky Method +1600
Insecure +2500
What We Do In The Shadows +4000

“Fleabag” won this last year as a part of the show’s unexpected Emmys haul. “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” did so for the first time two years ago, and Amazon’s series is in prime (pun VERY intended) position again this year. The +125 odds to win Best Comedy Series put the show behind only “Schitt’s Creek,” whose final season aired earlier this year.

“Schitt’s Creek” is something of a darling in the opening betting odds, but most in the industry would tell you that “Mrs. Maisel” is probably better served as the odds-on favorite. “Curb Your Enthusiasm” returned after a sizable hiatus with a phenomenal 10th season, but this has to be “Mrs. Maisel’s” award to lose. “The Good Place” will have one last chance to claim the prize, but those +1000 odds aren’t too appealing.

Buying low on “Mrs. Maisel” looks like it could be a very profitable betting strategy as we approach the 2020 Emmy Awards.

The Bet
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Taylor Smith / Author

Taylor is a sports writer based in Southern California. While he primarily specializes in basketball, baseball and football, he will also dabble in things like soccer and politics from time to time. He has lived in just about every corner of the United States at one point or another, and he has been covering sports and sports betting for the better part of a decade. Taylor currently lives in Long Beach with his fiancรฉ and their two cats.