For the fourth straight season, the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors will face one another in the NBA Finals. This was probably the toughest trip to the championship series for either team during this same span, but in the end, each one proved it deserved to be in this year’s title clash.
With Game 1 of this best-of-seven showdown on tap for Thursday night at Golden State, now is the time to place your bets on a few series props with the best value in the posted odds.
NBA Finals- Series Price
The series price odds for this year’s matchup heavily favor Golden State at -1050 with Cleveland listed as a +675 underdog. Betting against the Warriors as prohibitive favorites going into Game 1 does not make all that much sense, but there is far to much risk for such a small reward betting on Golden State at this current series price.
The best-case scenario for betting the series price is for Cleveland to win Game 1 on the road. That would drive the price down on Golden State to a point where there is some value in its adjusted series price odds. If the Warriors win Game 1 as expected given the fact that they are 12-point home favorites, their new series price odds will go through the roof.
This would have to be a wait-and-see bet for me. Cleveland should be able to win a game or two along the way. If one of those wins comes within the first three games of the series, the price on Golden State should become more attractive.
NBA Finals- Exact Series Result
If you are convinced that the only mystery in this series is how many games it takes Golden State to win its third NBA title in four seasons, then betting the exact result offers some value in the posted odds.
The best odds on the board for this prop are +130 for a 4-1 Golden State series win. The odds that the Warriors pull off the four-game sweep are set at +200. Moving down the list, they move to +330 for a 4-3 series win by Golden State and to +380 for the Warriors in six.
If you did want to take a flyer on Cleveland, the best odds on the board for a series win by the Cavaliers are set +1600 for a 4-2 victory.
LeBron James has played like a man on a mission in the playoffs and there might be just enough gas left in the tank to lead his team to a couple of wins. Golden State has played well in its three series, but it has looked very beatable at times. Both factors add some value to the +380 odds that the Warriors win this series four games to two.
NBA Finals- Total Games Played
The betting odds for this prop almost mirror the odds for Golden State in the exact series result. They are set at +120 for a five-game series and +180 for four games. The odds move to +300 for a six-game series either way and they are set +330 that it goes the distance.
Given that I have Golden State winning this series 4-2, the logical bet would be on the +300 odds that this series lasts a total of six games. Another play would be to hedge my exact series bet with a bet that the series last five games at the +120 odds. Unless there is a sweep, or the series goes the distance, I would still walk away a winner as long as Golden State wins.