NBA Odds: 2023 NBA Finals Winner prediction and pick

The NBA playoffs are now in full swing, and we’ve already seen some great basketball in the first round. Below we continue our NBA odds series with an NBA Finals winner prediction and pick.

While we won’t know the winner for a couple of months, we can get the best values right now.

Here are the NBA odds for the 2023 Finals, courtesy of FanDuel

NBA Odds: NBA Finals Winner Odds

Boston Celtics: +260

Milwaukee Bucks: +300

Phoenix Suns: +550

Philadelphia 76ers: +700

Denver Nuggets: +800

Golden State Warriors: +1300

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Boston Celtics

Led by All-NBA nominees and Finals MVP contenders Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, the Celtics remain the slight favorites to win their first NBA title since 2008 and their 18th all-time championship.

Their defense has been firing on all cylinders as of late, and they comfortably beat the Hawks by 13 points in back-to-back games to open the first-round series ahead of a likely clash with Philadelphia in the Conference Semifinals.

Boston has had the Sixers’ number in recent years and won two of its three regular-season matchups with Milwaukee, so it’s no surprise that last year’s runner-up is the favorite to take home the Larry O’Brien trophy.

Milwaukee Bucks

Insult met injury in Milwaukee’s stunning 130-117 loss in Game 1 against Miami last Sunday, when the Bucks looked disjointed after a long layoff from securing the No. 1 seed and lost Giannis Antetokounmpo to a back injury.

The Greek Freak missed Game 2 on Wednesday night, but you wouldn’t know it if you just looked at the box score, as the Bucks mounted a massive 81-55 lead at halftime and dominated on both ends of the court.

Brook Lopez took over as the team’s leading scorer with 25 points, followed closely by Jrue Holiday (24 points, while dishing out 11 assists) and Pat Connaughton (playoff career-high 22 points), as the Bucks scorched the Heat in a 138-122 victory. Milwaukee was really cooking from deep, tying the NBA record for three-point baskets (25 of 49) in a playoff game.

The Bucks once again proved to have enough depth and firepower elsewhere to overcome the absence of Giannis, as they went 11-8 without the two-time league MVP during the regular season. But they’ll look forward to getting their superstar back very soon.

Phoenix Suns

Despite coming up short in the Finals for the third time in franchise history two years ago, Phoenix is back to full strength and has the third-best odds (and the best in the west) to win its first-ever championship.

The Suns got red-hot down the stretch with Devin Booker and Kevin Durant emerging as arguably the league’s most dangerous scoring duo, while DeAndre Ayton and Torrey Craig have really stepped up with extremely efficient performances, especially against the Clippers in their first-round series, which is tied 1-1.

Having split their four-game regular season series with Denver and Sacramento, the Suns will be fun to watch throughout the postseason as the favorites to represent the Western Conference.

Philadelphia 76ers

Facing the fourth-best odds for the NBA Finals, Philadelphia would likely have to go through each of the two frontrunners—Boston and Milwaukee—to win its first championship in 40 years. During the regular season, the 76ers went 1-3 against the Celtics and split the series, 2-2, with the Bucks.

Led by the NBA’s scoring leader and leading MVP candidate Joel Embiid, the Sixers have opened the postseason with back-to-back double-digit wins over Brooklyn. They offer intriguing value if you believe the team is truly just hitting its stride after consistently bullying most of its opponents since early March.

Denver Nuggets

After annihilating the Timberwolves by 29 points on Sunday, Denver faced a much tougher test in Game 2 on Wednesday night. Despite leading by 15 points at halftime, the Nuggets managed to dig a hole in the second half, as Anthony Edwards erupted for 41 points and hit on a staggering 81 percent of his shots in the third quarter.

Nevertheless, the Nuggets held on and took back control, with Jamal Murray also stealing the show with a 40-point outburst of his own, to go along with Nikola Nokic’s 27 points, nine assists, and nine boards.

Murray and Jokic will continue to have to do a lot of the heavy lifting in the postseason, but this team offers appealing value as a bit of a sleeper team to potentially win its first-ever title.

The Nuggets are definitely battle-tested. They split their four-game regular game series with the Suns and Lakers, and they split their two-game series with the Bucks, Sixers, and Celtics. They also swept the Clippers and Warriors and won two of their three meetings with the Kings during the regular season.

Golden State Warriors

The defending champions are off to their first 0-2 start in a playoff series since 2007 and are now regarded as a bit of a long-shot after back-to-back losses in Sacramento, where they were cooked by the likes of De’Aaron Fox (62 combined points), Domantas Sabonis (36 points) and Malik Monk (50 points) off the bench.

Nevertheless, this series could take a drastic turn as the Warriors return home, with Andrew Wiggins back in the fold and shaking off some initial rust after being away from the team for over two months for an undisclosed family matter.

With a 33-8 record at home and an 11-32 mark on the road (playoffs included), the Warriors boast one of the NBA’s largest home-road splits since the 1960s, with their confounding inability to defend from deep being the primary culprit.

Despite struggling in the regular season with a combined 2-9 record against Western Conference foes in the Nuggets, Suns, and Lakers, Golden State’s getting back to full strength at the right time.

The Warriors also split their regular season series with the Clippers and Grizzlies, as well as the Eastern Conference heavyweights (Sixers, Bucks, and Celtics), so they could be very dangerous if they can right the ship against the Kings.

NBA Finals Winner Prediction & Pick

While some of the long-shots offer intrigue for potentially exceptional value, including the aforementioned Nuggets (+800) and Warriors (+1300), along with the Kings (+2500) and Cavaliers (+4900), the Celtics (+260) and Bucks (+300) are the safest bets and still offer strong value at this point in the postseason. With Boston up (2-1) against Milwaukee in the regular season, I’ll roll with the Celtics to continue the trend and bounce back from last year’s Finals loss.

NBA Finals Winner Prediction & Pick: Boston Celtics: +260

The post NBA Odds: 2023 NBA Finals Winner prediction and pick appeared first on ClutchPoints.

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