Value on NBA Championship Futures Odds
by Aaron Smith - 5/5/2010
Now that we’re past the first round of the NBA Playoffs, it’s time to start looking at futures betting and find some solid values. The winners won’t be crowned for quite some time, but the first round of action helps us see who might have what it takes. The Cleveland Cavaliers and the Los Angeles Lakers are the favorites, but there are definitely other teams capable of winning the title. We’re down to eight teams left vying for an NBA Championship. What do the NBA Championship futures odds look like, and who are some teams you might want to consider to win it all? Let’s take a look at three teams I think should be at the top of your list. All odds are from 5Dimes.
- Orlando Magic (+310)- Many people tend to forget just how close Orlando was to winning the NBA Championship last year. Two times they lost games to the Lakers that they really should have won. The Lakers were the more experienced team, and they used that veteran savvy to defeat the Magic. While the Lakers and the Cavs are both favored this year, it sometimes seems the Magic are flying under the radar. Based on the way they are playing right now, I really think this Orlando team is better than they were a year ago. Dwight Howard is a match up nightmare, and Jameer Nelson is healthy and firing on all cylinders. The team added Vince Carter and Matt Barnes over the offseason, and they are as deep as anyone. Don’t sleep on the Magic. They could definitely win it all!
- San Antonio Spurs (+1700) - The Spurs are definitely getting older, and their window of opportunity is starting to shut. They built an extremely successful franchise that won four titles, and while they aren’t likely to win a fourth, one has to think their odds are better than +1700. Manu Ginobili is playing solid basketball, and Tony Parker has been impressive in his return from injury. Tim Duncan is a step slower than he used to be, but he still does everything well fundamentally and is a force on the defensive end. George Hill is a big reason the Spurs upset Dallas and have a chance to make noise in the postseason. Hill gives the Spurs another scoring option and takes some of the load off Tony Parker. The Spurs know they don’t have many more chances to get to the top, so don’t expect this team to go down without a fight.
- Boston Celtics (+1400) - Based on the way they played throughout the regular season I wouldn’t give the Celtics the smallest of chances, but they have looked much better in the postseason. The team seems to have a little extra pep in their step now that the games really count. Remember, this is the team that won the title just two years ago. Paul Pierce isn’t nearly the player he was then, and Kevin Garnett is dealing with injuries. It will be up to guys like Rajon Rondo and Ray Allen to have big games and carry the weight. The Celtics have proven they are capable of playing with Cleveland already, and if they keep playing the solid defense that won them the title two years ago, they could surprise quite a few people.
The landscape in the NBA this year is such that I do believe several teams have a legitimate shot to take home the hardware. In years where there is no clear-cut favorite, we can often find a diamond in the rough to ride to at least the NBA Finals for a nice profit. Take advantage of the public pouring money into the two favorites, and find one of the underdogs that could make you some nice cash this postseason.
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