NBA betting handicappers are used to the Los Angeles Lakers being the first choice in the Western Conference but they look to have no competition for 2010-11.
The Lakers are one of the most popular teams in any sport to wager with at Sbg global.com. The gambling public has long loved to wager on the Lakers and this causes their overall board value to be less than what it should otherwise be. Last year the Lakers had a 57-25 straight up record and yet got the money just 33 times in those 82 games as the betting public hammered their board value into submission. The oddsmakers simply kept jacking up the price on LA in order to attract action to the other side. Despite beating the Celtics in the 2010 NBA Finals 4-3 the Lakers got the money just 3 times. This year the Lakers have opened as -160 favorites to win the Western Conference
Could Thunder Boom?
The Oklahoma City Thunder emerged as a surprise playoff team last year and had a NBA bet record of 50-32 straight up and 48-34 against the spread. Kevin Durant is a bona fide super star and averaged 30.1 points per game while also averaging close to 8 rebounds per game. The Thunder extended the Lakers to 6 games in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs and has won the respect of handicappers after paying out 48 times in the regular season and 4 more times in the playoffs despite losing their series to the Lakers. OKC is as second choice for the West at +600.
Mavericks Remain Respected
NBA betting handicappers also respect the Dallas Mavericks as a potential threat to upset the Lakers. Dallas was also a +600 choice to win the Western Conference as Dirk Nowitzki remained with the team after testing the free agent market. Dallas had a nice bounceback season with 55 wins last year but the Mavs are not getting any younger and again came up short in the playoffs as they lost a tough 7 game series to another aging team…San Antonio
A Golden Nugget?
The Denver Nuggets were the hot NBA bet commodity in 2009 when the made the Western Conference Finals but slipped back last year as coach George Karl missed the playoffs due to cancer treatments. Karl is back but Carmelo Anthony may not be as trade talks are underway for the future free agent. Denver is +800 to win the West.