Updated NBA Championship Odds: Favored, Smart Pick & Longshot
With the 2016-17 NBA regular season now one-fourth of the way over, pro basketball bettors everywhere need to know which team is the favorite, which one is actually the smart pick and which team is the top longshot to hoist the league’s Larry O’Brien championship trophy when the NBA Finals conclude next June.
Thanks to my latest look at the updated NBA championship odds, you’re going to find out just that. Now, let’s get busy!
Analyzing The Updated NBA Championship Odds: Favored, Smart Pick & Longshot
Golden State Warriors 2/3
Analysis: The Golden State Warriors have the best record in the league right now at 21-4 and have won eight of their last 10 games at the time of this writing. Since last week, Klay Thompson scored 60 points in 29 minutes in one game while dropping 30 in their most recent game. Golden State’s odds have also changed from 5/7 a week ago to the 2/3 odds they currently are.
Not only that, but more importantly for the rest of the league, it looks like the Dubs are starting to come together even more now and have gotten some stellar play from their second unit of Andre Iguoadala, David West, Shawn Livingston and…the athletic JaVale McGee of all people.
Oh, did I forget to mention that the Dubs also have a trio of guys named Steph Curry, Kevin Durant and Draymond Green? If there’s one are of concern, it’s still a lack of height, rebounding and interior strength.
The Smart Pick
Cleveland Cavaliers 3/1
Analysis: The Cavaliers (17-5) have won four straight after losing three in a row last week. Sadly, I don’t think it really matters what LeBron James and company do right now as it’s a virtual guarantee that all roads to the NBA Finals in the Eastern Conference will have to go through Cleveland.
I know J.R. Smith is a head case that no one but LeBron James has been able to corral, but make Kyrie Irving is a monster that no one can stop and Kevin Love now looks more comfortable than he has since arriving in Cleveland. I guess it’s possible that Toronto, Chicago or Boston could challenge the Cavs for conference supremacy, but I don’t see anyone beating the Cavs in the east, as much as it pains me to say that!
Houston Rockets 40/1
Analysis: Houston has won six straight to go from a 50/1 pick last week to a 40/1 pick right now.
The Rockets are 17-7 and in second place in the Southwest Division two games behind San Antonio and look like a ‘scary’ team that absolutely no one wants to face in the postseason, including Golden State. James Harden’s transition to point guard has gone even better than head coach Mike D’Antoni could have hoped for and the Rockets have plenty of veteran talent surrounding their unquestioned leader.
Veteran shooting guard Eric Gordon will challenge for Sixth Man of the Year if he keeps playing the way he has so far. Veteran small forward Ryan Anderson is a sweet-shooter while point guard Patrick Beverly is one of the best perimeter defenders in the NBA. Throw in the youth and explosiveness of Montrezl Harrell and Clint Capela and the Rockets become completely dangerous.
Besides, at a value-packed 400/1, the Rockets are offering great odds for a legitimate longshot contender!