We’re now halfway done with the NBA season and the postseason odds for both of New York’s teams are looking a bit rosier than at the start of the season.
Coming into the season, the Nets were tied with the Warriors and Clippers for the third-best odds at +700, while the Knicks were nowhere to be found. However, both teams have been among the six best teams in the league in terms of winning percentage since December 1st.
While the sportsbooks responded and moved the Nets up to the second-best odds to win an NBA title, the Knicks still remain out of the picture; however, their playoff odds have increased dramatically. Let’s dive in with our odds, courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.
NBA Championship Odds
|New York Knicks||+20000|
The Celtics (+350) remain the current betting favorite despite actually having a slightly worse record than the Nets since December 1st. The Nets are 16-6 over that span, while the Celtics are 17-8. Both teams are averaging 115.6 points per game; however, the Nets are shooting better from deep and from the field in general and have the 3rd best Net rating in all of basketball.
Given that Brooklyn’s odds have actually gotten worse since Kevin Durant’s injury, this seems to be a decent time to place a bet on the Nets to win it all since we know KD will be back well before the postseason.
Lately, we’ve also seen the Grizzlies surging up the title odds, now sitting at +850. A big reason for that is that the Grizzlies are the best team in basketball since December 1st. They have the best record at 19-5 and also the best overall net rating. When Ja Morant is out there doing insane things, it’s hard to bet against Memphis.
Yet, the Nuggets (+800) are also emerging as a legitimate title contender now that Jamaal Murray is back to join Nikola Jokic. The Serbian big man is angling for yet another MVP trophy, and the Nuggets are the second-best team in basketball since December 1st with a 19-6 record and net rating that only trails the Grizzlies. We’ve seen the Nuggets make a deep playoff run before, and Jokic is as good as any player in the league, but I’m just not sure Denver has the firepower to take down Boston, Milwaukee, or Brooklyn in a long series, so I can’t bet them with these odds.
Knicks Playoff Odds
As you can see from above, Vegas isn’t giving the Knicks much shot at a title, and rightfully so. However, the Knicks’ postseason odds have improved of late. They now seem like a betting lock to make the play-in game.
|Odds on Dec 1st||Current Odds|
|New York Knicks||-165||-285|
Given how these odds have changed, this bet doesn’t make sense right now. The Knicks seem like a sure thing to be in the play-in, especially after the injury to Mitchell Robinson, and betting this at -285 doesn’t leave you with much of a chance for a profit.
However, the Knicks have also seen their playoff odds improve as well.
NBA Playoff Odds
|Odds on Dec 1st||Current Odds|
|New York Knicks||+120||-150|
Since the Knicks have the 6th-best record in the NBA since December 1st and the 5th-best net rating, it makes sense that their odds to make the playoffs would improve. It would also seem likely that I tell you to jump at this bet at -150, but I can’t do that.
The Knicks are in real trouble defensively without Mitchell Robinson for the next 3-4 weeks. On top of that, only one team they face during that span is not competing for a playoff spot, so the schedule is brutally timed with the injury. I’m just not confident the Knicks can keep this up without Mitch.
However, I do think this is a playoff team when healthy, so my recommendation is to watch the betting odds. The Knicks are going to lose a decent chunk of games coming up and the odds are going to drop for them. There’s even a chance we get plus odds again soon, so I’m going to wait and pounce when I get the chance to get more profitable odds.
It also buys me time to see if the bottom falls out without Mitch and the Knicks decide to sell; although, I believe that’s highly unlikely.