The Los Angeles Lakers will tip off their season as the consensus favorites to win a second straight NBA championship. And the betting public is on board.
More money has been bet on the Lakers to win the title than has been bet on every other team combined at William Hill sportsbooks. The Lakers account for a whopping 60% of total dollars that have been wagered on William Hill’s championship odds.
The Lakers are listed as the favorites at 11-4, followed by the Brooklyn Nets and Milwaukee Bucks, who are each 5-1. The LA Clippers, at 6-1, are the only other team with single-digit odds at William Hill sportsbooks.
The next tier of title contenders, according to oddsmakers, includes the Boston Celtics (12-1), Miami Heat (16-1), Dallas Mavericks (20-1), Toronto Raptors (20-1), Philadelphia 76ers (20-1) and Denver Nuggets (20-1). But bets on anyone other than the Lakers are hard to come by.
“The money has been coming in [on the Lakers], a steady stream of support for them,” Jeff Sherman, vice president of risk management for the SuperBook at Westgate Las Vegas, told ESPN. “We’re at 11-4 right now and still getting plenty of support at that number, too.”
The Lakers have attracted five times as much money as the Nets, the second-most-heavily-bet team at William Hill. The two largest futures bets — $20,000 and $10,000 — placed at William Hill are both on the Lakers.
The Lakers open their season Tuesday night against the Clippers. The Lakers, who enter the season having been favored in 24 consecutive games, are 3-point favorites.