NBA Finals betting: The Celtics open as a big favorite over the Mavericks


The Boston Celtics are overwhelming favorites to win the NBA Finals.

The Celtics are -225 at BetMGM to beat the Dallas Mavericks after Dallas took down the Minnesota Timberwolves to win the Western Conference on Thursday night. Dallas easily dispatched the Wolves in Game 5 after Minnesota extended the series with a win in Game 4 on Tuesday night.

Boston, meanwhile, was hoping that Minnesota could keep the series going a little longer. The Celtics clinched a Finals berth on Monday by completing a sweep of the Indiana Pacers.

With the Celtics returning just $4.44 on a $10 bet to win the series, Dallas is +180 to win the NBA Finals. The Mavericks entered the playoffs as the No. 5 seed in the West and beat the Los Angeles Clippers and top-seeded Oklahoma City Thunder before the Wolves.

The Mavericks made a couple of key moves at the trade deadline to propel them to the Finals. Dallas traded for P.J. Washington from the Charlotte Hornets and Daniel Gafford from the Washington Wizards. Both players have played big roles for the team in the playoffs, especially with Maxi Kleber sidelined for much of the postseason with a shoulder injury.

Kleber returned for Game 5 against the Wolves and played nine minutes as Dallas put the game away before halftime.

The Celtics are set to get Kristaps Porzingis back for the Finals. The former Maverick suffered a calf strain in the first round against the Miami Heat, and Boston hasn’t missed a beat without him. The Celtics are 12-2 so far this postseason after beginning the season as the favorite to win the title following the offseason acquisitions of Porzingis and Jrue Holiday.

Boston posted the best record in the NBA during the regular season and had no pressure for the top seed in the East as everyone else in the conference struggled and dealt with injuries to key players.

Oddsmakers like the chance of a short series too. A 4-1 win by the Celtics is at +300 and the favored exact series outcome. A Boston win in six games is at +350, while a Celtics win in seven is at +450. A Boston sweep is +500.

The most likely outcome for the Mavericks is a six-game win at +400 followed by a seven-game win at +600.



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