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Vegas: Raptors have third-best odds to win NBA title

Only four teams remain in the hunt, and the Bucks and Warriors are your best bet to win it all... followed by the Raptors.

NBA: Milwaukee Bucks at Toronto Raptors John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

OK, you’ve had close to 48 hours to recover from Kawhi Leonard’s miracle bounce that finally set the stage for the NBA Conference Finals. Are you good? Calm, collected, neurons firing in all the right directions again? Good, especially if you’ve got a gambler’s mind, because you’ve only got a few hours to place your bets before the Western Finals begin!

Here are your updated NBA title odds for each of the conference finalists:

Basically, it’s still “Warriors-versus-the-field” here, as the Vegas oddsmakers have Golden State as the overwhelming favourite. The Bucks being second-favourite is right where they were at the start of the postseason too, so nothing has changed there either — and frankly, that +230 isn’t a bad bet, if my limited sports bettor knowledge (i.e., never having bet on sports once in my entire life) tells me anything.

Should You Bet on the Raptors?

As always, we here at RaptorsHQ do not condone gambling, and as noted above, I am as far from a betting expert as you can find on the Internet.

But the Raptors at +750... those odds seem intriguing! What Vegas is telling you here, is that if you plop down $100 on your Toronto Raptors, and your Toronto Raptors win the Larry O’Brien trophy next month, Vegas is gonna give you back your $100 — and another $750.

Is your faith in your team worth that chance? I can think of worse ways to spend $100.

More importantly: Are you ready to cheer for an underdog? The Raptors were favoured in the first round, and we all felt the pressure of that after the Raptors (predictably) lost the first game. Almost everyone picked Toronto to beat the 76ers and almost everyone’s picks were in jeopardy for three bounces and two seconds that felt like an eternity. This time, almost everyone is picking Milwaukee, the Bucks have homecourt, Toronto’s exhausted, no one except Kawhi Leonard can hit a shot, expectations are very low, so, hey, maybe they’ll actually surprise some people this time.

The Raptors are four wins from the Finals. The Eastern Conference Finals tip off tomorrow night in Milwaukee.