2018 NBA Conference Finals Betting Preview

NBA Live Betting

After an exciting first round of games, things were decided relatively quickly in the conference semi-finals. We now have four teams remaining with the Conference Championships set. In the East, it will be young guns of the Boston Celtics taking on LeBron James and the Cavaliers. In the West, it’s the Houston Rockets who are looking to take down the defending title holders, the Golden State Warriors.

SportsBetting.ag NBA Championship Futures

The odds at SportsBetting.ag to win the NBA title look like this:

Team Odds
Boston Celtics +1600
Cleveland Cavaliers +550
Golden State Warriors -150
Houston Rockets +240

It’s an exciting field, that’s for sure. I think the oddsmakers are correct where they favor the Western Conference over the East. I think Cleveland takes down Boston, but they’re going to face a buzzsaw no matter which team makes it out of the West. However, there may be some value at +550, just because of the “LeBron won’t lose” factor. King James is something special and although the Raptors got beaten badly by Cleveland – they still did win 58 games.

With that said, I am most drawn to the Rockets at +240. I’ll break that one down a bit more below as we go over the Eastern and Western Conference matchups.

Eastern Conference Finals – Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Boston Celtics

Game 1: Cavaliers -1 at Celtics +1 Total: 204.5
Series Price: Cavaliers -285 Celtics +240

Cleveland is appealing at -285, but it’s probably not worth laying that price and instead going game-by-game and betting them. I lean towards them in Game 1. Boston has plenty of talent and a coaching advantage, but LeBron’s support cast showed up in the Raptors series and there is no one on the floor who is going to be able to check James on Boston.

The series may end up going 6-7 games, but I still feel like Cleveland punches their ticket to the NBA Finals 80 percent of the time in this spot. If you want to go the route of a series bet, you still have slight edge betting -285 if you’re like me and think Cleveland wins this series 80 percent of the time or more.

Pick: Cavaliers -285
Game 1 Lean: Cavaliers -1

Western Conference Finals – Golden State Warriors vs. Houston Rockets

Game 1: Warriors +1.5 at Rockets -1.5 Total: 224
Series Price: Warriors-180 Rockets +160

This is the matchup we have been waiting for all season long. The Rockets management and players have said time and time and again that they are “built” to take down the Warriors – they will now get their chance.

I think Houston has a better than reasonable chance of winning this series. Curry still is not fully healthy, and Golden State has been incredibly inconsistent throughout the season and postseason. Their defense has simply not been up to par. I truly think this is Houston’s year to win the title. I like them in the series at +160 and the +240 futures bet for them to win it all. I’d go with the +240 to win the title over the +160 bet in the series.

Pick: Rockets +160
Game 1 Lean: Houston -1.5
Joseph Falchetti

Joseph Falchetti - Editor-in-Chief / Sports Writer & Analyst

Joe is the author of the blog, most picks, and the majority of excellent content on SafestBettingSites. He's been mentioned on Forbes.com as a gaming analyst and his articles have been linked by larger publications, such as the New York Times.

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