- Despite swirling trade rumors and an eight-game losing streak, the Brooklyn Nets remain title favorites
- Seven teams are priced at +1300 or shorter on the FanDuel Sportsbook app
- Read below for the latest NBA Championship odds and our best bets
James Harden is reportedly not happy. Kyrie Irving is only playing in road games. Kevin Durant is hurt. Still, the Brooklyn Nets sit atop the NBA Championship odds at FanDuel.
Brooklyn leads Golden State, Phoenix and Milwaukee in what looks poised to be a wide-open NBA postseason. Seven teams are priced at +1300 or shorter, and the Lakers lurk at +1800 with LeBron James and Anthony Davis healthy and playing well.
The impressive Chicago Bulls come in at +2700, while the overachieving Grizzlies and injury-hit Nuggets are priced at +3000.
2022 NBA Championship Odds
|Team||Odds to Win NBA Title|
|Golden State Warriors||+460|
|Los Angeles Lakers||+1800|
Odds as of Feb 07 at FanDuel Sportsbook
While the Cavaliers haven’t yet broken in to the top ten contenders, their odds to win the East shortened on Sunday after acquiring Caris LeVert.
Nets Somehow Clinging On to Favorites’ Position
The Nets and Lakers were the two title favorites heading into the season, and while the Lakers have seen their price lengthen dramatically, the odds suggest there’s still a lot of confidence in the sheer talent on Brooklyn. That’s despite Durant missing time, Irving’s peculiar part-time situation and increasing rumors that Harden could be dealt before the deadline.
Joe Harris’ availability over the rest of the season is also in doubt. Brooklyn has dropped into the Play-In positions, and owns the 15th-best net rating in the NBA. While Durant will be back come the playoffs, this is a team in the most predictable of turmoil. It’s remarkable they remain favorites for the 2022 NBA title.
Perhaps there’s hope the Nets can acquire Ben Simmons and integrate him alongside Durant and Irving, improving their team as a two-way force. Losing Harden makes Brooklyn even more dependent on Irving being allowed to play in home games, though. A lot has to happen for the Nets to be favorites when the playoffs start, even if Harden stays.
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Wide Open Championship Race
Part of the reason the Nets remain favorites is the suspicion over many of the other contenders. There’s uncertainty over Draymond Green’s injury status, and the Warriors are not the same team on either end without Green. Milwaukee’s record isn’t great, and Brook Lopez’s absence raises a question mark or two around them despite Giannis Antetokounmpo’s brilliance at the five.
Phoenix has the best record in the league, and has lost just twice in 2022. They have coped superbly in non-Deandre Ayton minutes this season, which was a major issue in the playoffs. Chris Paul and Devin Booker are playing at near-MVP level. Some skepticism remains, partly due to opponent injuries in the 2021 postseason, but Phoenix looks a good value bet at +500.
A repeat of last season’s Finals has become a popular prediction. The Suns continue to excel on both sides, and the Bucks are a juggernaut when their big three are available. Of the top four, Phoenix and Milwaukee represent the best value bets.
Longshot NBA Championship Wager Options
The Russell Westbrook situation gets increasingly messy. A trade seems very unlikely before the deadline, and Westbrook’s play is only getting worse, forcing Frank Vogel to bench him in crunch time. Despite the former MVP’s struggles, the Lakers have some hope with Anthony Davis back to his best and playing the five. LeBron James returned from injury a few days ago with a masterpiece of a triple-double.
The Lakers still have a very high ceiling with the James and Davis tandem in full flow. They could be worth a small wager at +1800 even if Westbrook remains on the team. It’ll be interesting to see if they can add a three-and-D wing before the deadline.
With the MVP Favorite level Joel Embiid is playing at, the Sixers deserve some attention at that price. Their odds will shorten dramatically if Harden arrives, and even if he doesn’t, they could considerably improve their chances by taking a different deal for Ben Simmons.
It might be a year or two too soon, but there’s also a case to be made for Memphis all the way out at +3000. They are top ten in offense and defense, and have the assets to add another piece ahead of the deadline.
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