You might not have noticed it unless you were checking the futures market on a regular basis, but the Boston Celtics have started to lose some favor with oddsmakers after their recent stretch of games.
Boston (46-21) remains the favorite to win the NBA championship with a price of +310 at FanDuel Sportsbook, but that number has fallen from +300 in just a week, and the Celtics are now co-favorites with the Milwaukee Bucks. After being +125 to win the Eastern Conference a week ago, the Celtics are currently listed at +135 in that market at FanDuel.
Perhaps that movement doesn’t seem like much, but it is the best price on the Celtics in either market since the All-Star break. They have been the favorite to win the NBA Finals and Eastern Conference for much of the year, and unquestionably so since a nine-game win streak in November.
But now there is at least some doubt, particularly with how this team has played of late. The Celtics are 1-3 over their last four games and 2-4 over their last six. Furthermore, the losses have come against Eastern Conference foes in the New York Knicks (twice), Brooklyn Nets, and Cleveland Cavaliers. Two of those defeats came by a combined three overtimes.
In addition to Boston’s recent stumble, there is more reason for optimism with the biggest contenders lately. The Milwaukee Bucks, who are 19-1 over their last 20 games, are +150 to win the East and +310 to win the title. Despite Kevin Durant being sidelined for a few weeks, the Phoenix Suns are +600 to win the championship.
From a betting perspective, it is up to us to figure out the best time to buy stock in Boston again. After all, this team made it to the NBA Finals last year and is likely going to be in the mix once again this summer.
The Celtics do have a favorable stretch ahead as they begin a six-game road trip. They will face the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday before taking on the Houston Rockets on Monday. They will meet the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday and the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday.
Boston has a really good chance of getting back on track over the next week, so we shouldn’t be surprised if these futures prices adjust once again. This time, however, it could go in the opposite direction.
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