The Phoenix Suns and Miami Heat saw their championship odds improve in sports betting when it was revealed Thursday that Kevin Durant requested a trade from the Brooklyn Nets and was said to be eyeing these two competitors.
However, bettors have gravitated towards a team that hasn’t made any significant moves into a roster that missed the playoffs last season — the Los Angeles Lakers.
Within 24 hours beginning Thursday afternoon, multiple sportsbooks were reporting a surge in betting interest in the Lakers looking to win next season’s championship. The Lakers’ title odds jumped from 22-1 to 10-1 at Caesars Sportsbook, where Los Angeles drew 3.5 times more bets than any other team as of Wednesday afternoon. Included in the rush of Lakers action was a $10,000 bet at odds of 22-1 from a New York bettor, according to Caesars.
“People always think the Lakers are going to end up with everyone,” Eric Fenstermaker, senior trading manager for Caesars Sportsbook, said in a company release on Friday, adding that the book has enough bets of $1,000 and $500 on it took the Lakers to make Los Angeles its biggest draw in the NBA title market.
DraftKings also saw a flurry of bets on the Lakers. As of Thursday afternoon, more bets have been placed on the Lakers than any other team, a DraftKings spokesman told ESPN.
The Nets saw their Caesars Sportsbook odds soar from 15-2 to 35-1 after news of Durant’s trade request broke. Fenstermaker said Brooklyn would likely grow into even bigger totals.
“The Nets now being 35-1 is probably still too low, but it depends on what they get back for Durant,” said Fenstermaker. “If they want to go punt and roll [Ben] Simmons and a bunch of no-names, they’ll be 80-1 or 100-1.”
The Nets started last season as the consensus favorites to win the NBA title.
https://www.espn.com/chalk/story/_/id/34181118/bettors-liking-los-angeles-lakers-title-odds-no-big-moves-team Bettors liking Los Angeles Lakers’ title odds despite no big moves from the team