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NBA Finals Betting Guide

The Golden State Warriors beat the Boston Celtics 103-90 in Game 6 of the 2022 NBA Finals to clinch a 4-2 series win and earn their fourth championship in eight seasons.

Stay tuned to Online Gambling as the 2022-23 season approaches to the find the latest odds, in-depth analysis, and predictions to help you make the best NBA bets.

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Page  created  19 Jul, 2022
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Who is Daniel Coyle?

Daniel Coyle is a sports writer based in Montreal, Canada. Daniel has written about sports and sports betting for over 25 years. His work features in an array of print and online media, including Sports Illustrated, Bleacher Report, Sportsnet.ca, NESN.com, Montreal Gazette, and The Globe & Mail.

Who won the 2022 NBA Finals?

The Golden State Warriors earned a 103-90 victory over the Boston Celtics in Game 6 of the Finals on June 16, sealing a 4-2 series win to become 2022 NBA champions.

The 2022 title is the seventh in Warriors’ franchise history, and fourth in eighth seasons following triumphs in 2015, 2017, and 2018.

The Warriors’ & Celtics’ path to the NBA Finals

The Dubs came into the Finals having steamrolled through the Western Conference playoffs as the No.3 seed, dispatching the Denver Nuggets (4-1), Memphis Grizzlies (4-2), and Dallas Mavericks (4-1) without ever facing an elimination game.

The Celtics, the East’s No. 2 seed, had a tougher slate after sweeping the Brooklyn Nets (4-0) in the first round, but were able to overcome the Milwaukee Bucks (4-3) and Miami Heat (4-3) to return to the NBA Finals for the first time since 2010.

Golden State Warriors celebrate NBA Finals victory

Image courtesy of - USA TODAY Sports

How the 2022 NBA Finals unfolded

Thanks to their superior regular season record, the Warriors held home-court advantage entering the Finals, though the Celtics stole Game 1 on the road 120-108.

The Warriors came back with a vengeance in Game 2, outscoring Boston 35–14 in the third quarter to tie the series with a 107–88 win.

The series swung back to Boston for Games 3 and 4, with the Celtics earning a 116-100 win in the former to take a 2-1 series lead.

However, the win would prove to be Boston’s last for the remainder of the series as the Warriors took the next three games to secure a 4-2 series win, and with it, their seventh NBA championship.

Steph Curry named Finals MVP

After posting Finals averages of 31.2 points, 6.0 rebounds, and 5.0 assists (including 34 points, seven rebounds and seven assists in Game 6), Steph Curry was voted the Finals MVP for the first time in his career, adding the accolade to a glittering resume that includes four NBA titles, two regular season MVP awards, and eight All-Star nominations.

Game 🏀 Matchup 🆚 Location 📍 Date 📅
Game 1 Celtics 120-108 Warriors Chase Center June 2
Game 2 Celtics 88-107 Warriors Chase Center June 5
Game 3 Warriors 100-116 Celtics TD Garden June 8
Game 4 Warriors 107-92 Celtics TD Garden June 10
Game 5 Celtics 94-104 Warriors Chase Center June 13
Game 6 Warriors 103-90 Celtics TD Garden June 16

NBA Championship Odds

Recent changes to US gambling laws mean NBA betting is now legal in 30 states. Here were the odds for the 2022 NBA Finals between the Warriors and Celtics.

  • Golden State Warriors (-350)

After missing out on the playoffs in each of the last two seasons, the Golden State Warriors returned with a vengeance in the 2021-22 campaign. The return of Klay Thompson, alongside the emergence of third year guard Jordan Poole and first-time All-Star Andrew Wiggins, gave the Warriors one of the best core units in the entire NBA. Spurred on by future Hall of Famer Steph Curry, the Dubs finished with a 53-29 regular season record and strolled into the playoffs on the back of a five-game winning streak.

And while the Warriors under Steve Kerr have been famed for their offensive firepower, it was the team’s defense that shone in the postseason. The Warriors had the second highest defensive rating among all teams this season, and that defensive prowess was on show as the West’s No.3 seed cruised past the Denver Nuggets, Memphis Grizzlies and Dallas Mavericks to reach the Finals for the sixth time in eight years. The Warriors didn’t let up against the Celtics and looked good value as -350 favorites as they held Boston to 100.8 points on 43.5% shooting throughout the series. The Dubs’ defense, combined with elite play from Curry (31.2 ppg), earned Golden State a seventh franchise championship.

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Image courtesy of - USA TODAY Sports

  • Boston Celtics (+280)

The Boston Celtics have been a steady playoff fixture over the past two decades, but had failed to reach the NBA Finals since 2010 coming into this season. After struggling to play .500 ball through the first half of the season, the Celtics embarked on an epic run starting in late January, going 28-7 over their final 35 regular season games while suffering consecutive losses just once during that stretch. With the duo of Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown powering Boston’s attack, the Celtics swept the Brooklyn Nets in the first round and ousted the defending champion Milwaukee Bucks in an epic seven-game series in round two. The Eastern Conference finals clash against the Miami Heat was equally tough, but thanks to a herculean effort from Jayson Tatum in Game 7 (26 points, 10 rebounds and six assists in just under 46 minutes), Boston was able to advance to the Finals where they would meet the Warriors.

Given the Celtics’ tougher journey to the Finals, as well as the fact that the Warriors held home court advantage, it was unsurprising that Boston came in at +280 underdogs. Even so, a superb victory in Game 1 on the road proved the 17-time NBA champions weren’t going to roll over. Yet the Celtics were unable to overcome the Warriors’ staunch defense over the course of the series, and eventually succumbed to a 4-2 series loss.

NBA Finals MVP Odds

Legalized NBA betting meant scores of basketball fans in the US could place wagers on who would take home the NBA Finals MVP award in 2022. Steph Curry and Jayson Tatum were the two main contenders:

  • Steph Curry – Golden State Warriors (-320)

Curry has reached just about every milestone possible for a basketball player over the course of a glittering 13-year career, including:

Four-time NBA champion (2015, 2017, 2018 and now 2022), two-time league MVP, eight-time NBA All-Star, four-time All-NBA First Team, two-time NBA scoring champion, NBA 75th Anniversary Team member, and a two-time FIBA World Cup gold medallist.

One of the few accolades that was missing from Curry’s trophy cabinet was a Finals MVP award; despite Curry raising the Larry O’Brien trophy three times heading into the 2022 Finals, the 34-year-old had missed out on the coveted prize on every occasion.

Yet from the opening round against the Denver Nuggets, it was clear the veteran sharpshooter had elevated his game to a new level. In fact, throughout the entire playoffs Curry recorded a statline of 27.4ppg on 45.9% shooting (including 39.7% from three), and elevated those numbers to 31.2ppg on 48.2% shooting to go along with six rebounds and five assists in the Finals. No wonder Curry was the bookies’ early favorite to claim the Bill Russell NBA Finals Most Valuable Player Award.

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Image courtesy of - USA TODAY Sports

  • Jayson Tatum – Boston Celtics (+350)

Jayson Tatum emerged as one of the reliable constants while the Boston Celtics endured a season-long battle with injuries. In addition to leading the team in games played (76), Tatum also topped the Celtics’ scoring charts with 26.9 points per game while grabbing eight boards per contest. The three-time NBA All-Star maintained that momentum during the postseason, averaging 25.6 points, 6.7 rebounds and 6.2 assists in 24 games (including a spectacular 46-point, nine-rebound performance in a 108-95 Game 6 win against the Milwaukee Bucks in the Eastern Conference semi-finals). It was understandable, therefore, that Tatum was listed as the runner-up favorite to Curry to win Finals MVP, but he was hounded by Andrew Wiggins over the course of the series as his efficiency dropped like a stone, and with it the Celtics’ chances of another title.

NBA Finals MVP winners over the past 10 seasons


NBA Finals MVP 🏆 Franchise 🏀 Season 📅
Steph Curry Golden State Warriors 2021-22
Giannis Antetokounmpo Milwaukee Bucks 2020-21
LeBron James Los Angeles Lakers 2019-20
Kawhi Leonard Toronto Raptors 2018-19
Kevin Durant Golden State Warriors 2017-18
Kevin Durant Golden State Warriors 2016-17
LeBron James Cleveland Cavaliers 2015-16
Andre Iguodala Golden State Warriors 2014-15
Kawhi Leonard San Antonio Spurs 2013-14
LeBron James Miami Heat 2012-13

NBA Finals Betting Tips

The passions of basketball fans never run higher than during the NBA Playoffs. But fans getting in on NBA betting action will give their chances of padding their bankroll a bigger boost by doing their homework. That means understanding all the betting options available to you and how to take advantage of line movements at your preferred sportsbooks. Gaining insight into crucial trends and NBA news that can impact the results on the court is also key. Here’s a look at five informed considerations sports bettors should make when wagering on the NBA Finals.

Futures betting on NBA Finals

NBA Finals futures are published year-round, but the action really heats up during the NBA Playoffs, with odds changing dramatically on a daily basis. Unlike the offseason and regular season, when NBA Finals futures odds only see movement due to major personnel moves or a dramatic change in the team’s position in the standings, the odds change quickly once June begins. As the number of teams still standing dwindles, the odds to win a championship change rapidly, with squads previously pegged as longshots suddenly moving into contention.

With the odds changing so quickly, it can be tough to keep up. The best way to get value from NBA futures is to do your research, monitor odds, and place your bets early to get the best potential value from them.

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Image courtesy of - USA TODAY Sports

Who will the NBA Finals MVP be?

Great individual and team performances helped the Boston Celtics and Golden State Warriors come through the Easter and Western Conference playoff battlefields to secure their places in the NBA Finals, where an elite trio led the race to be named NBA Finals MVP.

  • Steph Curry - Golden State Warriors

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Image courtesy of - USA TODAY Sports

A three-time NBA Champion and two-time NBA MVP, Steph Curry was rightly pegged as the overwhelming favorite to claim his first Finals MVP award – a prediction that proved true as Curry won his fourth title with the Warriors.

  • Jayson Tatum - Boston Celtics

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Image courtesy of - USA TODAY Sports

Jayson Tatum was already known as one of the NBA’s bright young talents coming into the 2021-22 season, but the 24-year-old elevated his play to another level this year. In addition to leading the Celtics in scoring and minutes played, Tatum earned his third successive All-Star nomination and was selected to his first All-NBA First Team. The 6’8, 210lb wing upped the ante in the postseason as he led the Celtics to the Finals for the first time since 2010 (being named Eastern Conference Finals MVP in the process).

  • Jaylen Brown - Boston Celtics

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Image courtesy of - USA TODAY Sports

Tatum’s running mate in Boston for the past six seasons has been Jaylen Brown; the 6’6. 223lb swingman came into the season off the back of his first All-Star nomination in 2021 and picked up where he left off, averaging 23.6 points to go along with 6.1 rebounds per game. He earned similar numbers throughout the postseason, which led to him being mentioned among the top three favorites to win Finals MVP – though he was always going to be somewhat of a long shot to do so.

Picking NBA Finals prop bets

There are a wide array of props bets available for the most avid sports bettors looking to cash in during the NBA Finals. As is the case throughout the season, game props are available covering every aspect of each team and player’s performance on the court. However, NBA Finals props should not be overlooked. Here are a couple of bets we listed prior to the series that landed during the course of the 2022 NBA Finals.

  • Steph Curry - Most three-pointers in the series

For sports bettors who follow the NBA even on a casual basis, this had to be considered a no-brainer bet. The greatest three-point shooter of all-time lit it up from beyond the arc during the postseason, making 91 3-pointers (including 31 in the Finals, more than any other player in the series).

  • Series to go to six or more games

It should come as no surprise that the series between these two historic teams went to six games; after all, the Celtics and Warriors both ranked in the top five for net rating over the course of the regular season, had similar records entering the playoffs (Golden State won 53 games to Boston’s 51), and split the regular season matchup 1-1. So, this was a pretty safe gamble that will have landed for a number of bettors.

Monitor line movement during the NBA Finals

With the NBA Finals regularly becoming a true best-of-seven battle every year, it’s crucial for sports bettors to stay on top of all the factors that influence betting lines. Of course, the single biggest factor in moving the NBA Finals futures line is winning. So be prepared for big swings in team prices as the series advances.

Two other factors that will spark line movement are injuries and off-court distractions. After a long 82-game regular season and three rounds of playoff basketball, the teams that reach the NBA Finals are battered and bruised. As a result, injury reports are constantly changing, with betting lines responding accordingly. The action off the court can also impact betting lines, including friction in the locker room, public statements by coaches and players, and how teams respond to other crises.

We know it can be tough staying on top of all the factors that spark line movement. That’s why our in-house team of experts are on hand to keep you informed on all the latest NBA news and betting trends. You can also monitor the odds we provide as they change and lay your bets when they are just right.

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Make smart choices on NBA Finals parlays

Just because the chase for the Larry O’Brien trophy comes down to two teams every year doesn’t mean you have to stop getting into parlay wagering. While there are no other basketball games on the schedule except for the Finals, quality parlay options exist. In addition to cross-sports parlays, where you can combine your NBA Finals game bet with a wager on NHL playoff action or an MLB contest, don’t forget to try your hand at same-game parlays.

Regardless of how you mix and match your NBA Finals parlays, the key to success is doing your homework. Stay on top of the action between game days with analysis from our in-house experts and monitor odds movement.

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Image courtesy of - USA TODAY Sports

NBA Finals History

Basketball fans have witnessed some spectacular battles in the NBA Finals over the years. Online Gambling have ranked the 10 best series from the past 50 years:

1) 2016 NBA Finals - Cleveland Cavaliers vs Golden State Warriors

Long the doormat of the NBA, the Golden State Warriors’ return to respectability largely coincided with the arrival of Steph Curry in the Bay Area in 2010. Curry capped his rise to superstardom while leading the Warriors on an impressive march to the NBA championship in 2015, and the team looked poised to repeat after winning an NBA record 73 games during the 2015/2016 season. However, LeBron James had other ideas while leading the Cleveland Cavaliers back to the Finals for a rematch with the Dubs. After the Cavaliers spotted Golden State a 3-1 series lead, LBJ took matters into his own hands, scoring 33 points per game in a trio of epic performances to bring Cleveland its first NBA title.

Cavaliers win 4-3

2) 1984 NBA Finals - Boston Celtics vs Los Angeles Lakers

The first of three NBA Finals between the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics during the 1980s, the 1984 NBA Finals was also the only championship clash of that era between these two teams to go seven games. Led by a youthful Magic Johnson and an aging Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, the Lakers powered to a 115-109 win in Boston in Game 1. However, as the series progressed, so did the momentum of Larry Bird, who fired the Celtics to a pair of overtime wins, including a spectacular 29-point, 21-rebound performance in Boston’s series-tying 129-125 Game 4 win. With home-court advantage reclaimed, the Celtics would go on to win the series in seven games, with Bird claiming his first career Finals MVP award.

Celtics win 4-3

3) 1974 NBA Finals - Boston Celtics vs Milwaukee Bucks

A clash between the top two teams in the NBA that season, who also split their four-game season series, the 1974 NBA Finals featured about as close a matchup as you can get. At the time, the Boston Celtics had endured an uncharacteristically long five-year championship drought. The franchise was led by John Havlicek, who many observers felt was past his prime. In contrast, the Milwaukee Bucks were just three years removed from their first championship season, and with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar leading the way, they were considered a team on the rise. Instead, NBA fans were presented with an epic matchup that lasted seven games, with road teams winning five times, and no team winning consecutive games. While Abdul-Jabbar turned in a vintage performance that featured six 30+ point outings, it was Havlicek who enjoyed the swan song, averaging 26.4 points, 7.7 rebounds, 4.7 assists and 1.9 steals to claim NBA Finals MVP honors.

Celtics win 4-3

4) 2019 NBA Finals - Toronto Raptors vs Golden State Warriors

Among the best regular season teams of the 2010s, the Toronto Raptors were also one of the biggest playoff disappointments during that stretch, bowing out in the first round on four occasions between 2014 and 2018. An offseason shakeup in the summer of 2018 following yet another playoff loss to LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers brought the enigmatic Kawhi Leonard north of the border. And the “Fun Guy” quickly captured the imagination of long-suffering Canadian basketball fans while leading Toronto to the third best record in the NBA. Discounted as a fluke on their way to their first ever NBA Finals berth, the Raptors rose to the occasion against the two-time defending champion Golden State Warriors, taking advantage of untimely injuries to Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson to claim the title with an NBA Finals victory in six games.

Raptors win 4-2

5) 1976 NBA Finals - Boston Celtics vs Phoenix Suns

Expected to romp to an easy title win after leading the league during the regular season with 54 wins, the Boston Celtics surprisingly had their hands full in a clash with the Cinderella Phoenix Suns. The Suns’ 42-40 record was the worst among playoff-bound teams that season. However, that did not stop Phoenix from marching to upset series wins over the Golden State Warriors and Seattle SuperSonics before splitting the first four games of their NBA Finals clash with the Celtics. However, that's where the Cinderella story would end as the Celtics reclaimed the series lead for good with a thrilling 128-126 Game 5 win that remains the only NBA Finals game to ever go to triple overtime.

Celtics win 4-2

Franchises with the most NBA championships in history

Franchise(s) 🏀 NBA Championships 🏆
Los Angeles Lakers, Boston Celtics 17
Golden State Warriors 7
Chicago Bulls 6
San Antonio Spurs 5
Philadelphia 76ers, Detroit Pistons, Miami Heat 3
New York Knicks, Houston Rockets, Milwaukee Bucks 2

6) 1997 NBA Finals - Chicago Bulls vs Utah Jazz

The fifth of six NBA championships won by the Chicago Bulls during the 1990s, it's no surprise that the 1997 NBA Finals are best remembered for the epic performance of superstar Michael Jordan. Deadlocked at two games apiece after dropping a 78-73 Game 4 decision to the Utah Jazz, it looked like the Bulls would have to hit the floor without Jordan for Game 5 after the Hall of Famer fell ill with a stomach virus. Faced with the daunting task of battling a Jazz team that was undefeated at home in the playoffs up until that point, Jordan made the decision to play in what has become known as the infamous “Flu Game”. MJ scored a series-high 38 points, including a game-clinching three-pointer in a 90-88 win that gave the Bulls a series lead they would not relinquish.

Bulls win 4-2

7) 2008 NBA Finals - Boston Celtics vs Los Angeles Lakers

Perhaps best remembered as the last time the Boston Celtics claimed the title, the 2008 NBA Finals also marked a change in how NBA champions were built, with Boston becoming the first team to win it all with a team led by a trio of “big three” superstars on max contracts. The top team in the NBA during the regular season with 66 wins, the Celtics were led by Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Ray Allen. And the trio didn’t disappoint in the Finals, particularly in Game 6, combining to score 69 points while leading Boston to a 131-92 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers and a record 17th NBA championship.

Celtics win 4-2

8) 1993 NBA Finals - Chicago Bulls vs Phoenix Suns

The third of the Chicago Bulls’ six NBA championships during the 1990s, the 1993 NBA Finals is widely remembered as an epic matchup between off-court friends and on-court superstars Charles Barkley and Michael Jordan. A fearsome duo when they hit the floor as part of the United States’ “Dream Team” squad at the 1992 Olympics, Jordan and Sir Charles put their friendship aside for their NBA Finals clash. As expected, Barkley fueled the Phoenix Suns’ attack with a team-high 27.3 points per game. However, he and the Suns were no match for Jordan, who averaged a spectacular 41.0 points and 8.5 boards per game as he led Chicago past Phoenix in six games.

Bulls win 4-2

9) 1996 NBA Finals - Chicago Bulls vs Seattle SuperSonics

Little was expected from the Chicago Bulls entering the 1995-1996 NBA campaign after the franchise made an early exit from the playoffs the previous spring. Sporting a retooled lineup that included the likes of Luc Longley, Steve Kerr, and the flamboyant Dennis Rodman, the Bulls embarked on one of the greatest NBA campaigns of all time, racking up 72 regular season wins. It was only fitting that Chicago should face the second best team in the league that season. However, the Seattle Supersonics would prove to be no match for Michael Jordan, who averaged 27.3 points per game while playing 42 minutes per night.

Bulls win 4-2

10) 2012 NBA Finals - Miami Heat vs Oklahoma City Thunder

While the 2012 NBA Finals lacks the suspense of other Finals matchups on this list due to lasting only five games, it remains memorable for a variety of reasons. For starters, it marked the first of LeBron James’ four NBA titles. And, perhaps more importantly, the first time that James squared off in an NBA Finals clash with arch-rivals Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder. Naysayers received a boost from the Miami Heat’s series-opening loss. However, LBJ’s 32-point performance in Game 2 quickly evened the series. Overall, James would go on to average 28.6 points per game and record double-doubles in each of the final three games of the series to earn his first ring and Finals MVP award.

Heat win 4-1

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FAQs

Is it legal to bet on NBA online?

Recent changes in legislation have opened the door for legalized sports betting across America. As the countdown towards the 2023 NBA Finals begins, over 30 US states have taken steps to legalize sports betting, with many more expected to join the list in the months ahead.

How does NBA betting work?

Sports bettors can get in on every aspect of the 2023 Finals with NBA betting. From wagering on who will win each game of the series to who will be named NBA Finals MVP, there are betting options available for both new sports bettors and experienced sharps.

Where can I find the best NBA Finals odds in 2023?

Online Gambling has got you covered with all the best spread, total, and moneyline betting odds available for next year’s NBA Finals. And by taking advantage of our live updates, you’ll always be on top of the action, both on the court and at the sportsbook.

When did the NBA Finals start in 2022?

The 2022 NBA Finals began on Thursday June 2 and finished on Friday June 17.

How many games are in the NBA Finals?

The NBA Finals is a best-of-seven series. That means that the first team to win four games will become NBA champions.

Who played in the 2022 NBA Finals?

The 2022 NBA Finals pitted the Boston Celtics against the Golden State Warriors. The Warriors won their seventh title in franchise history by defeating the Celtics in six games, winning the series 4-2.

Who are the favorites to win the NBA Finals 2023?

To keep up to date on the rapidly changing odds to win the NBA championship, keep tabs on our NBA Playoffs Odds page, which provides you with NBA lines as they come available.

What channel are the NBA Finals on?

There's never a shortage of TV coverage of the NBA Playoffs and the NBA Finals, with several channels sharing game coverage including ABC, ESPN, TBS, and TNT. Canadian viewers can catch all the action on TSN.

How to watch NBA Finals online?

Online viewers are able to watch the NBA Finals on ABC and ESPN via fuboTV streams, while NBA TV subscribers can catch the action of every game throughout the regular season and playoffs on multiple devices.

What team has won the most NBA championships?

The Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics are tied for the most championships in NBA history with 17 titles each.

Who has the most NBA championship rings?

The legendary Bill Russell has holds the record for the most NBA championships won with 11 titles during his 13-year playing career with the Boston Celtics, including eight straight championships between 1959 and 1966.