Revised NBA Odds to win the National Championship

Posted by Aaron . on May 23, 2016 in

When the NBA playoffs opened, there were 16 teams ready to contend for the 2015-16 title. Now, there are only four standing: Golden State and Oklahoma City in the Western Conference, and Cleveland and Toronto in the Eastern Conference. The Oklahoma City Thunder lead their conference final 2 games to 1, and the Cleveland Cavaliers lead their final by the same margin. Let’s look at the NBA betting odds that these four teams have of claiming the title this year.

Revised NBA Odds to win the National Championship

 

 

Cleveland Cavaliers (3/1)

The Cavaliers are off to an impressive 10-1 record so far this postseason, having swept through the Detroit Pistons and the Atlanta Hawks in the first two rounds and then taken the first two games against the Toronto Raptors before falling in Game 3 of that series. The fact that this Game 3 loss (99-84) was so thorough does seem to indicate that this could be a six- or seven-game series. However, the Cavaliers still have to be the favorite to prevail: Toronto took seven games in each of its first two series, and they are relying on the gimpy elbow of Kyle Lowry and the banged-up thumb of DeMar DeRozan and hoping that Jonas Valanciunas can come back and make a difference inside.

Golden State Warriors (6/1)

The Warriors had been the easy favorite to win the title until they got punched in the mouth, not once but twice, by the upstart Thunder at home in Game 1– and then once again in Game 3. The Warriors fell behind in their NBA Finals series against the Cleveland Cavaliers, but they did not take two routs the way they have against the Thunder, especially not the 133-105 shellacking they took in Game 3. If the Thunder win Game 4 at home, these odds will go even grimmer. The Warriors have not figured out how to stop the duo of Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, so when the Thunder play solid defense, the Warriors don’t have an answer for them.

Oklahoma City Thunder (8/1)

The Thunder have found a new gear that arrived during their conference semifinal series against the San Antonio Spurs. All year long, the Thunder have suffered in the interior and on defense, when they would fall asleep for lengthy periods of crucial games, particularly in the fourth period. While Westbrook and Durant are the marquee stars, though, it is Steven Adams and Enes Kanter that have pushed Oklahoma City to the next level, giving them solid play in the lane on both ends of the floor. The Thunder have the chance to put the Warriors in a 3-1 hole before having to take things back to Oakland.

Toronto Raptors (12/1)

As the Raptors showed in their Game 3 win, they can defend the Cavaliers successfully. Many bettors were likely wondering after the Raptors spent Games 1 and 2 in the Cavs’ woodshed, taking two routs. If Game 3 gives them confidence, and they can bring the series level in Game 4, then things will get really interesting. The Raptors have the best defense in the East — and might have a better defense than the Thunder.