Revised Odds to Win the NBA Title
Now that we are getting through the first round of the NBA playoffs, things are tightening up all over the Association. Miami and the Los Angeles Clippers all roared out to 2-0 leads with fairly easy wins at home, but the Hornets and the Trail Blazers took Game 3 in both series on their home courts to tighten things up. The only team from the West that is done with their first round is San Antonio, which swept a Grizzlies team that had been decimated by injuries and had almost fallen out of the playoffs. Cleveland is also done with the first round, having completed a four-game sweep of the feisty Detroit Pistons, only winning Game 4 by a bucket. Atlanta has seen their 2-0 lead evaporate with two straight losses in Boston. How are the betting odds stacking up now for teams to win the NBA title?
Revised Odds to Win the NBA Title
San Antonio (+100)
The Spurs dismantled the Grizzlies in each of their four games in the first round. They got plenty of time to rest their starters, and they didn’t have to work hard in any of the contests. With a veteran group like that, this kind of a series is a real gift.
Golden State (+300)
Why aren’t the Warriors the favorites? Because Stephen Curry has become fragile all of a sudden. First an ankle, now a knee. Injury woes derailed the Cavaliers last year and are a definite factor for the Warriors now, as the Rockets have already won one game without Curry opposing them.
The Rockets still don’t play defense, but they do have the hot scoring hand of James Harden. That will make for possibly one more amazing win against the Warriors, but then the Rockets will be on the golf course.
When you don’t have a superstar on your roster, that means you have a really balanced attack, but you also don’t have a go-to shooter when the chips are down. The Hawks got blown away in Boston because they couldn’t get those key stops and they didn’t have anyone ready to nail the big shots down the stretch.
I love the Celtics’ intensity once their defense wakes up. They might be the most ferocious home team in these playoffs (with the possible exception of Toronto). They have a team-first mentality, but Isaiah Thomas is also developing into the sort of clutch shooter that you have to have down the stretch.
The Pistons won three of four against Cleveland this season…but then the Cavs pulled off a four-game sweep in the playoffs. Three of the games were close, but Cleveland showed the finishing power that they lacked in the Finals last season.
Hassan Whiteside might be the toughest center in the East right now. And Dwyane Wade simply looks ageless.
Huge win at home against the Heat. But can they even the series? I don’t know if they even know.
Dallas (+8 million)
Or something. Anyway, Dallas should already be out of the playoffs, but Kevin Durant couldn’t throw the basketball into the ocean in Game 2, which is how the Mavericks pulled out a mysterious win despite scoring only 85 points.
Oklahoma City (+600)
This is a scary-good offensive team. But they really struggle on defense against the elite teams, particularly on the road.
L.A. Clippers (+550)
With Griffin back, this team has all the tools of a West contender. However, they have that tendency to quail down the stretch, with all of their drama on the floor.
I love watching this team on offense, as Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum (who just won the Most Improved Player Award) have revitalized Rip City. But they have a hard time getting those crucial stops. If they win Game 4 against the Clippers I would move this down to +1200, though.
Really? You can’t beat Paul George and four other guys? How on earth is this series 2-2?
Yes, Boston, Atlanta, Cleveland and maybe even Charlotte would be my picks to beat Paul George and four other guys.