After we learned about the return date/potential plan/etc, the only logical thing to take a look at is the latest and greatest NBA title odds. I have to say, I'm a bit confused as to what I am reading. I don't really have a problem with the top 3 teams, those have been the best teams all year long. If you want to argue the Bucks should have the same odds as the Lakers, whatever, fine by me.
But right away I can't help but notice the disrespect for the defending champs. I normally roll my eyes when Raptors fans keep talking about that shit, but honestly there is no way they should have the same odds as the Sixers and worse odds than the Rockets and Celtics. This is a team that is tied for the 3rd best net rating in the entire league, has more wins than BOS/PHI/HOU/LAC, and ya know, they've proven they can get it done in the playoffs. Yes, not having Kawhi is a big factor, but they proved all year they can be just as good even without him. Siakam has turned into a legit stud. They have the 2nd ranked defense in the entire league. This year they went 2-1 vs PHI. You might remember one of those games they held Embiid to 0-11 shooting.
At the very least they should be in the 16/1 group in my opinion. To me, you can't win the title and then come into the next season and back that up with the third best record in the league and 3rd best net rating and be grouped with a team like PHI who won 39 games, has the 18th ranked offense, 6th ranked defense, and 12th best net rating. Not to mention they were 10-24 in games not in their own building, and last time I checked they don't play at Walt Disney World. TOR was a consistent 23-9 both at home and on the road. That's a better road record than BOS and HOU.
I also think the Heat are a little too low as well. They have the 8th best record in the league, a 7th ranked offense and the 10th best net rating. How can they have the same odds as a Nets team that from all reports suggest won't have either Kyrie or KD? What am I missing. At the very least they should be in the same group at the Nuggets or even the Sixers at 20/1. If the Nets odds are somehow factoring in those guys coming back, wouldn't they be higher than 40/1?
All I know is if there's one team that without a doubt is being slept on, it's the Raptors. I don't know why people are still doing that after what we saw last year and then through 64 games this season. They proved to be the second best team in the East and have the deep playoff experience that someone like this current Boston group doesn't have. I'm not saying they should be the favorites in the East, I know the Bucks exist, but putting them in the same group as an underachieving Sixers team makes no sense to anyone who watched both teams play.