We are officially over the hump for the halfway point in the NBA regular season. Next month is All-Star Weekend and teams are now focused on making their runs at securing a playoff spot in the Eastern and Western Conferences. Many of the teams are in a position where experts felt they would be but there are a few that have surprised some by placing themselves in a position to make a serious playoff run. In this article, we will take a look at some of the teams that have positioned themselves in line for a playoff run and a shot at the 2018 NBA Finals!
It should come as no shock to anyone that the 2 top teams in the NBA are the Boston Celtics from the Eastern conference, and the Golden State Warriors from the Western Conference. Those 2 teams have been a mainstay in the top of their respected conferences throughout the 1st half of the year and should be either in the lead or around the top of their conferences for the remainder of the year.
One of the surprises this year has been the Cleveland Cavaliers who are currently 3rd in the Eastern Conference. The Cavaliers opened up the regular season as the favorite to win the Eastern Conference but have had their struggles posting only a 26-17 record on the year. Lebron James and his crew have really struggled on the road, posting an 11-12 record on the road but this is Lebron that were talking about and they are still only 5 to 1 to win the NBA championship finals. We all know, Lebron will be there in the end!
There are a few teams that are very interesting to watch from a betting standpoint. These are some teams listed below who are in a great position to make a run for the NBA championship finals and are paying off at a decent odds.
Minnesota Timberwolves | 29W-17L | 4th Place Western Conference |
Opening Odds 100-1 | Current Odds 25-1
The Minnesota Timberwolves opened up with odds of 100 to 1 to win the 2018 NBA Championship but as the year goes on this team seems to get better and better. Prior to the start of the NBA’s regular-season, the Timberwolves signed Jimmy Butler who has taken over as the team’s leading scorer at 21.6 points per game. The Timberwolves can play from outside the perimeter and they can also play physical inside the paint with a combination of Karl-Anthony Towns and Taj Gibson. They are now only 25 to 1 and definitely a team to watch down the stretch!
Oklahoma City Thunder | 25W-20L | 5th Place Western Conference |
Opening Odds 60-1 | Current Odds 16-1
The Oklahoma City Thunder opened up the NBA’s regular season at 60 to 1 and are now tied as the 4th favorite to win the NBA Championship. The thunder’s trio of Russell Westbrook, Carmelo Anthony, and Paul George are creating matchup nightmares for opposing teams. The Thunder are 25-20 on the year and have already proven that they can play with the best teams in the Western Conference. The Thunder have already beaten the 1st place Golden State Warriors on November 22 by the score of 108-91, they have beat the 2nd place Houston Rockets on December 25 by the score of 112-107, they have also beat the 3rd place San Antonio Spurs on December 3 by the score of 90-87 and they have beat the 4th place Minnesota Timberwolves on December 1 by the score 111-107. This team has already proven that they can play with the big boys and are destined to be one of the favorites in the Western Conference.
Toronto Raptors | 30W-13L | 2nd Place Eastern Conference |
Opening Odds 60-1 | Current Odds 25-1
The Toronto raptors enter the regular season at 60 to 1 to win the NBA championship but most recently their odds have fallen to 25 to 1. That may seem like a substantial drop in odds but to be completely honest it should drop a lot more. The Toronto Raptors at 25 to 1 is a complete steal considering the fact that there are in 2nd place in the Eastern Conference and are just 3 games back behind the Boston Celtics for the top spot in the conference. The Raptors are 30-13 on the year and have the best home record among all NBA teams. With the Raptors standing strong in 2nd place in the Eastern conference and having the best home record in the NBA this team will be tough if they can somehow get home court advantage in the playoffs.