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Updated 2021 NBA Championship Odds for All 30 Teams After James Harden Traded to Nets

Chris Amberley

by Chris Amberley in NBA Basketball

Updated Jan 13, 2021 · 8:02 PM PST

Lebron James Giannis Antetokounmpo
How does the James Harden move to Brooklyn affect the title odds of the other top contenders? Photo by Jevone Moore/Icon Sportswire.
  • The Los Angeles Lakers remain the favorites to win the 2020-21 NBA Title, despite the Brooklyn Nets acquisition of James Harden
  • The Los Angeles Clippers and Milwaukee Bucks are now +600 and +700 respectively to win it all
  • Read below for analysis on the latest update to the NBA Championship odds, and potential teams to target

The NBA landscape was flipped on its head on Wednesday night with the announcement of the James Harden trade to Brooklyn. Harden joins Kevin Durant and possibly Kyrie Irving, should he decide to return to the team, to form the newest “Big 3” in basketball, and immediately vaulted the Nets to a top-two contender to win the NBA title .

2020-21 NBA Championship Odds

Team Odds
Los Angeles Lakers +260
Brooklyn Nets +270
Los Angeles Clippers +600
Milwaukee Bucks +700
Philadelphia 76ers +1800
Utah Jazz +2000
Boston Celtics +2100
Denver Nuggets +2100
Miami Heat +2100
Dallas Mavericks +2200
Toronto Raptors +4600
Indiana Pacers +4900
Phoenix Suns +5000
Portland Trail Blazers +5500
Golden State Warriors +6500
Atlanta Hawks +10000
Houston Rockets +12000
New Orleans Pelicans +12000
Orlando Magic +12000
Washington Wizards +16000
Memphis Grizzlies +19000
Minnesota Timberwolves +19000
San Antonio Spurs +19000
Sacramento Kings +24000
Charlotte Hornets +25000
Chicago Bulls +25000
New York Knicks +25000
Cleveland Cavaliers +25000
Detroit Pistons +25000
Oklahoma City Thunder +25000

Odds taken January 13th at FanDuel.

Brooklyn’s NBA Championship odds shortened from +550 to +270, behind only the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers. The Harden trade also had a ripple affect on the other top contenders, as the LA Clippers odds’ were lengthened from +575 to +600, while the Milwaukee Bucks’ price fell from +545 to +700.

The drastic change in the Nets’ odds seems like a bit of an overreaction, but has it created value on the other top-four contenders? After a slow start, the Bucks have found their stride, while on paper, there’s a strong case to be made that both LA teams boast more complete rosters.

Buy the Bucks?

Since dropping three of their first five games, Milwaukee has been on a tear. They’ve reeled off six wins in seven games, including three straight, claiming victory in each of those outings by at least nine points.

They lead the NBA in points per game, field goal percentage and 3-point makes, while ranking top-7 in rebounds and assists. They’re the number one team in ESPN’s BPI metrics, and have done a great job adding and keeping talent around Giannis Antetokounmpo.

Khris Middleton is playing at an extremely high level, while the addition of Jrue Holliday in the offseason gives them a dangerous third scoring option. Brook Lopez and Donte DiVincenzo are nice complimentary pieces in the starting line-up, while the additions of Bobby Portis and D.J. Augustin gives them much needed depth off the bench.

Sure, the very top of the Nets roster is more talented, but 1 through 10 the Bucks are a more complete team, and arguably a better bet to come out of the East.

Stick with the Clips?

Of all the top-four contenders, the Clippers are the toughest to try and figure out. They’ve looked like both world beaters and underachievers this season, and rank middle of the pack in most key offensive and defensive categories.

Some of their struggles could be attributed to Kawhi Leonard playing at less than 100 percent, but top to bottom this is a championship calibre roster and the move of Harden out of the Western Conference should actually improve their title chances, not hurt them.

Without Harden, Houston is likely to be a non-factor in the West, meaning there’s one less threat to LAC’s chances of reaching the Finals. Of course they’ll likely have to go through the Lakers to get there, something I’m not sure any team is equipped to do.

Value Lies with Lakers

The reigning champs’ NBA title odds saw a slight drop as well in light of the Harden news, falling from +245 to +260. LA has been the class of the NBA so far posting a 10-3 record, and their roster is deeper and more talented than it was when they won the title in October.

They’re allowing a conference low 105.7 points per game and are limiting enemy shooters to 43.9% from the field and just 34.2% from beyond the arc. Offensively, they’re scoring a conference best 113.5 points per 100 possessions, and I challenge you to name a better one-two punch than LeBron James and Anthony Davis.

The duo is averaging a combined 46.7 points, 16.9 rebounds and 10.6 assists per game, despite playing reduced minutes. The additions of Dennis Schroder and Montrezl Harrell are serious upgrades to the point guard and center positions and there’s no reason at this point to think the Lakers aren’t the clear cut, best bet to win the title.

If you like LA bet them now because their odds are only going to get shorter once the market corrects itself. This team is deeper and much better constructed to win playoff games than Brooklyn, and its only a matter of time before they distance themselves from the Nets in the futures market.



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