Following the frenetic Conference semi-finals, we’re down to the final four in the NBA Playoffs. Here, we preview the chances of the Warriors, Celtics, Heat and Mavericks, and predict who’s going to be crowned champion…
Golden State Warriors +125
Golden State Warriors earned their ticket to the Western Conference Finals as they finally put away the Memphis Grizzlies with a convincing 110-96 win in Game 6 of their Second Round playoff series.
It’s their first trip this deep into the playoffs since 2019 when they made the NBA Finals – before eventually losing to the Toronto Raptors.
After reaching five straight NBA Finals between 2015 and 2019, they’ve returned to the big stage in style. Following the elimination of the Suns, the Warriors are now the betting favorites to take home the trophy.
The Dubs success rests mostly on their triple threat of Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green.
Curry has averaged 27 points per game in a convincing playoff run for the Warriors to date. Despite everything he’s won in his glittering career, NBA Finals MVP is the one accolade that’s eluded him. If he leads the Warriors to success, this may well be the year he claims the title.
Klay Thompson led the way with another spectacular shooting performance in their Game 6 conference semi-final win with 30 points. He’s back in the playoff limelight after a 2+ year absence with a pair of serious injuries, and this is the stage where he shines brightest.
Draymond Green has been his all-around consistent self throughout this playoff run. The ten-year veteran is one of the smartest players in basketball, and there are few players in the modern era that can match his playoff career. He’s one of 13 players in NBA history to tally 1,500 points, 1,000 rebounds and 750 assists in the postseason.
Golden State seem to be getting healthy at just the right time. Veteran forward Andre Iguodala will be able to return soon after missing the past seven playoff games, and forward Otto Porter Jr. is back after being absent from the past two games. Head coach Steve Kerr was forced to miss games 4, 5 and 6 against Memphis but has been cleared to return to manage from the courtside.
It’s great to see Golden State back in the center of the title picture, and they definitely have the vast experience needed to triumph. Back the Warriors to glory with FanDuel.
Boston Celtics +200
The Boston Celtics showcased their title credentials by dumping out the defending champions, the Milwaukee Bucks, in a game 7 decider.
This was a tightly contested series that was stretched to its limit, but the Celtics blew their opponents away when it mattered most with a huge 109-81 victory.
They threw away a 14-point lead with 10 minutes remaining in the game 5 matchup against the Bucks to leave them 3-2 behind in the Eastern Conference semi-finals.
In recent times this might have been the end of the line for this inexperienced line-up, but they are coming of age before our eyes as they stormed back to take the series.
This will be their fourth conference finals appearance in the past 6 years, but they have lost at this stage in each of the other 3 seasons.
At 24 years old, Jayson Tatum has already experienced a lifetime of NBA playoff games with the Boston Celtics, but none quite as legendary as his Friday night show with his season on the line.
On the edge of elimination on the road, Tatum scored 46 points with nine rebounds in a career-defining performance. Without him their season would be over, and he’s primed to star against the Heat in his matchup against Butler.
This could be the time for Boston to claim their first title since 2008 and to draw them clear of the Lakers with a record 18 NBA wins. Enjoy a risk free first bet up to $1000 with BetMGM.
Miami Heat +400
Miami were the first side to book their place in the conference finals with a 4-2 win over Philadelphia, and in doing so, reached this stage for the second time in three seasons.
The Number 1 seeds in the East have home-court advantage in their conference final match-up against the Celtics, and the fact that they have been able to rest up since Thursday may give them a slight advantage.
Jimmy Butler has led the Heat with a series of incredible individual performances to see off both the 76ers and the Hawks in the opening round.
Outside of Luka Dončić, Butler may be having the best playoffs of any individual. He’s fourth in scoring, leads the league in steals, and is in the top 20 in rebounds and assists.
With veteran point guard Kyle Lowry potentially missing a chunk of this series with a hamstring injury, there will be more pressure put onto Butler’s shoulders.
The Heat will likely have to be near perfect if they’re going to beat the Celtics and then win the Championship series, but they have mistakenly been written off many times this season, and they’re still standing.
Dallas Mavericks +600
The Dallas Mavericks stunned the top-seeded Phoenix Suns with a 123-90 Game 7 blowout to advance to the Western Conference finals for the first time since 2011.
The team seems to be improving with just about every game and with the best remaining player in the playoffs – Luka Dončić – in peak form, they’re full of confidence.
If the Mavs are going to upset the odds once again, then they are going to have to lean on their superstar Dončić, who has been dominating in the playoffs. The Slovenian lit up the decider against the Suns with 35 points, 10 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 steals in just 30 minutes of action.
Incredibly, he’s leading the playoffs in scoring with 31.5 points as well as rebounding with 10.1 boards. He’s also tied with Warriors Draymond Green for the most assists, and to cap it all off, he is second only to Jimmy Butler in steals per game.
Golden State hasn’t looked like that world-beating, fearful team we saw back in 2015 and 2016, and Dallas has the fire power needed to make this a closer series than the odds suggest. BetRivers is your betting destination for the NBA Playoffs.
Continue to follow Franchise Sports throughout the Conference Finals and onto the Championship series for the latest news and betting previews.