Can anyone slow down the Cleveland Cavaliers? For that matter, can anyone put a halt to the runaway freight train Golden State Warriors? It seems like these two teams are on a collision course to meet in the NBA Finals for the third straight season as they are slicing through the competition as easy as a hot knife through butter.
According to a CBS Sports report, LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers made easy work of the Toronto Raptors once again as they completed the four-game sweep this afternoon with a 109-102 victory, putting Cleveland back in the NBA Eastern Conference Finals for the third straight season.
The Raptors were short-handed for the second straight game as they were without their star point guard Kyle Lowry. Toronto fans knew it was an uphill climb in this series against the Cavs, especially without Lowry in the lineup. However, given the way that the Cavaliers have played over the past three seasons in the playoffs, it may not have made much of a difference if Lowry was in the lineup or not.
Over the last two seasons, nobody has been better than Cleveland in early postseason round action. The Cavaliers are a perfect 8-0 so far this season in the playoffs and they are an incredible 16-0 in the first and second round games over the course of the last two seasons.
That is called domination!
So can the winner of the Boston Celtics vs. Washington Wizards take down the Cleveland Cavaliers in the East Finals?
Probably not, but you can’t ever disregard it. Right now, it seems like the Cavaliers are literally playing with the opponent, meaning they know they have the better team and in the end, they expect to win. The Celtics would be a tough match-up for Cleveland, and they would have home court advantage in a key Game 7 if the series should go that far.
In the Western Conference, Golden State is one game away from also being a perfect 8-0 in the 2017 postseason. The Warriors will play the Utah Jazz on Monday night, and unless something changes in a hurry for Utah, it may be their last game of the season.
The Warriors, barring a total collapse, will either face the Houston Rockets or San Antonio Spurs in the Western Conference Finals. No matter which team they play, the Warriors will be the heavy favorite.
So once again, can any team stop the Cavs and Warriors from meeting for the third straight battle for the NBA crown? Las Vegas odds makers don’t believe so.
As of May 6, Vegas Insider has the Golden State Warriors as the heavy favorite to win the 2017 NBA title at 1/3 odds. That is a little shocking actually. 2/1 or even money sounds more logical, but to have to wager $300 to win $100 seems a bit steep, especially considering they should get tested in the Western Conference Finals no matter who they play, and if they should win and face the Cavaliers again in the NBA Finals, it will be far from a push over for Golden State.
The Cleveland Cavaliers at 5/2 seem like a much better bargain for your buck.
If you have a hunch that the Utah Jazz could pull off an incredible comeback and win the Western Conference, you could make a ton of money for a small amount of risk. However, that isn’t going to happen. Hey, it is always nice to dream!
Below is a look at the most current odds to win the 2017 NBA Championship.
Odds To Win 2017 NBA Title
Golden State Warriors 1/3
Cleveland Cavaliers 5/2
San Antonio Spurs 10/1
Boston Celtics 20/1
Houston Rockets 25/1
Washington Wizards 80/1
Utah Jazz 5000/1
Odds To Win 2017 NBA Eastern Conference
Cleveland Cavaliers 1/4
Boston Celtics 3/1
Washington Wizards 20/1
Odds To Win 2017 NBA Western Conference
Golden State Warriors 1/10
San Antonio Spurs 7/1
Houston Rockets 12/1
Utah Jazz 2000/1
[Featured Image by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images]