The NBA season remains on hold due to the current outbreak of the coronavirus. This professional sports league has been personally impacted by the situation with a few prominent players contracting the virus over the past few weeks.
There is no clear time table for a possible return to action. Current conditions and specific betting props suggest it will be later rather than sooner. The odds that NBA fans and bettors will see an NBA game before June 1 heavily favor NO at -500. Odds on the feint hope that games can resume that soon are set at +300.
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The odds that the NBA will be able to return to action sooner that July 1 offer a bit more hope. Yet, the prop bet odds still favor NO at -165. The odds that NBA live games will be back on the board before that date are +125.
Early projections are eying the month of July for the official return on actual games.
The odds that NBA games will be played before Aug. 1 favor YES at -180. The betting odds that the work stoppage extends past Aug. 1 are set at +140.
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Once the actual time frame for a return is sharpened, the NBA will then have to determine how to play out the remainder of the 2019/2020 season.
Play could start back up with postseason games using the top eight teams in the current standings for both the Eastern and Western Conference. If things get delayed too long, maybe the playoffs may only consist of the top four teams in the East and West.
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The general consensus (according to NBA futures) is that the East’s Milwaukee Bucks would face the West’s Los Angeles Lakers in the 2020 Finals. LA Clippers fans are going to take exception to that statement as the third-best team on the list.
The Bucks are -175 favorites to win the East and the Lakers are +100 favorites to win the West. Both teams have +225 odds to win the 2020 NBA title with the Clippers third on that list at +300 odds. The rest of the list starts with the Boston Celtics at +1200 followed by the Houston Rockets at +2000 to round out the Top 5 teams.
Given the extended layoff, it will be very interesting to see the playing form of these five teams or any of the other 25 NBA teams for that matter. Conceivably, a team like Toronto at +2500 could come out of the gates hot and upset the Bucks’ bid for the NBA Finals two seasons in a row. Maybe the Denver Nuggets at +3300 find that winning form to get past both Los Angeles teams.
Going back to the general assumption that the Bucks and Lakers will play in the championship series, one adventurous online sportsbook is taking action on all seven games.
Game 1 of the NBA Finals will be played in Milwaukee with the Bucks favored by four points. They move to 3.5-point favorites in Game 2.
As the series shifts to the Staples Center in Los Angeles, the Lakers get the slight nod in Game 3 as 1.5-point home favorites. That line moves to just one point for Game 4.
Milwaukee returns home as a four-point favorite in Game 5 and Los Angeles is favored by one point at home in Game 6. Assuming everything goes chalk for the favorite in the first six games, the Bucks get the edge to win it all as 3.5-point home favorites for a deciding Game 7 showdown.