Who do you like in the NBA Finals? The Greek Freak vs. LeBron James? The Freak vs. Kawhi? Oddsmakers set the lines for the 2020 NBA Finals matchup, and the Milwaukee Bucks meeting the Los Angeles Lakers in the championship fetches +210 odds according to MyBookie. Bettors can wager on a potential NBA Finals featuring the Bucks and LA Clippers at +310 odds.
For most of the season, oddsmakers and bettors have been trying to figure out which team from Los Angeles (Lakers or Clippers) will square off against the Milwaukee Bucks.
NBA suits would love to see both LA teams slug it out for a chance to play the Greek Freak and the Bucks in the championship.
2020 NBA FINALS MATCH UP ODDS
LA Lakers vs Milwaukee Bucks +220
LA Clippers vs Milwaukee Bucks +310
Houston Rockets vs Milwaukee Bucks +1300
Denver Nuggets vs Milwaukee Bucks +2000
Utah Jazz vs Milwaukee Bucks +2900
LA Lakers vs Toronto Raptors +2100
LA Clippers vs Toronto Raptors +2700
Miami Heat vs LA Lakers +4000
LA Lakers vs Philadelphia Sixers +2800
LA Clippers vs Philadelphia Sixers +3500
Boston Celtics vs LA Lakers +1400
Boston Celtics vs LA Clippers +1800
Odds via MyBookie
The defending champion Toronto Raptors are long shots to advance to the NBA Finals. Nick Nurse and the Raptors are +2700 odds to meet their old teammate Kawhi Leonard and the LA Clippers in the NBA Finals. Bettors can also wager on the Raptors facing the Lakers in the NBA Finals at +2100 odds.
According to an update by William Hill, the Lakers are the favorites to win the NBA championship at +240 odds. The Bucks are right behind at +260 odds to win the NBA title. The Clippers are +320 odds to win the championship.
Bucks vs Lakers
From a marketing standpoint, you can’t write a better script. One fading superstar versus the league’s next big superstar in an NBA Finals matchup.
LeBron James already won NBA titles with two different teams (Miami Heat and Cleveland Cavaliers). Now, he’s tasked with helping the Lakers restore their old championship glory. It’s not easy following in the footsteps of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, Shaquille O’Neal, and Kobe Bryant. But LeBron is seeking to put one final stamp on his legacy with one more championship.
The coronavirus and the Greek Freak stand in his way. If/when action resumes, LeBron’s task will be to quickly rally his squad for a sequestered playoff run in Orlando.
But don’t forget the Beast from the East, otherwise known as the Greek Freak. The Bucks dominated everyone in their path while on pace for a 70-win season.
The Lakers and Bucks split their regular-season series 1-1. The Greek Freak scored 32 points and hauled down 11 rebounds, but LeBron dropped 37 points with 8 rebounds and 8 assists en route to a 10-point victory in Los Angeles shortly before the shutdown.
Bucks vs Clippers
Out on the West Coast, the LA Clippers were just getting their sea legs as a newly-formed team. Doc Rivers saw his squad acquire two All-Stars with the addition of Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. Everyone and their grandmother knew that Kawhi wanted to sign with the Clippers and return to his hometown. But the addition of PG13 sort of came out of nowhere. At the end of the 2018-19 season, it seemed like PG13 and Russell Westbrook were fine and dandy in Oklahoma City. Then, last summer, the Thunder traded Westbrook to the Houston Rockets and George to the Clippers.
George started the season with the Clippers a little late after recovering from shoulder surgery. Meanwhile, Doc Rivers made sure he didn’t wear out his new star, Leonard. Rivers even got in trouble with the NBA for his liberal usage of “load management” techniques to sit Kawhi during back-to-back games. Old-school pros like Michael Jordan and Charles Oakley scoff at skipping regular-season games. But in the modern era, Rivers wanted to make sure his big guns were well-rested by the time the postseason rolled around.
It took half a season before PG13 and Kawhi figured out how to optimally play with each other and their new teammates.
Kawhi, with the Toronto Raptors, edged out the Greek Freak last year in the 2019 Eastern Conference Finals. It could be another compelling rematch. Everyone wants LeBron vs. the Greek Freak. But Kawhi vs the Greek Freak would be one heck of a consolation matchup.
The Bucks were 2-0 against the Clippers this season.