The Western Conference of the National Basketball Association has always been a battle of heavyweights. With the depth of the talent in the modern NBA, it’s almost certain that the top ten teams in each conference can cause trouble for anyone on any given night.
The NBA trade deadline ended over a week ago, but the effects of it are still being felt in the Western Conference. The Los Angeles Lakers retooled on the fly, sending Russell Westbrook out and bringing D’Angelo Russell back to the organization that drafted him. They also added Mo Bamba, Malik Beasley, and Jarred Vanderbilt.
The Dallas Mavericks made a big move by swinging for embattled point guard Kyrie Irving. The Phoenix Suns made the most significant swing, trading most of their future for Kevin Durant and creating a new triumvirate that could potentially conquer the Western Conference.
What does all this mean? It means that the people who place odds for the sports betting world are having a devil of a time figuring out how to handicap the Western Conference. The playoffs will be fun. There are lots of opportunities to take advantage of odds at different sportsbooks to take advantage of opportunistic chaos.
This article will reference the following sportsbooks: DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM, and PointsBet.
Cream of the Crop: Top Tier Teams: Nuggets + Suns
As we look across multiple sportsbooks, we see that the odds vary significantly for most teams. For some of the teams, the range of odds is great. For others, less so.
The teams that stand out as the least variant between sportsbooks are the Denver Nuggets and the Phoenix Suns. The Nuggets’ odds of winning the Western Conference across the four sportsbooks are between +280 and +390. The Suns are between +225 and +900. The new three-headed monster of Chris Paul, Devin Booker, and Kevin Durant hasn’t appeared on the floor together yet. We’ll have to see what that looks like.
Meet Me in the Middle: The Rest of the Bunch
There are a lot of good opportunities for long shots in the middle of the Western Conference. Because of the strength of talent in the conference, teams ranked three through ten could provide a match-up problem to just about anyone in the conference.
There are two teams on two sides of the coin in the Western Conference that will prove to be interesting futures bets. On one side, there’s the young, spunky Memphis Grizzlies. They’ve demonstrated their team culture and youthful inexperience all season. Their odds fluctuate significantly between books, ranging from +400 to +800.
The Los Angeles Lakers are the most appealing bet from a narrative perspective. The Lakers completely retooled at the trade deadline. With odds between +2000 and +3000, it’s a fun bet to see if LeBron James’ greatness can carry another roster to a championship.
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