Lakers the Vegas Favorites to Win Championship, Celtics Just Behind


Lakers the Vegas Favorites to Win Championship, Celtics Just Behind The Boston-L.A. finals rematch never transpired this past June, but the past two NBA champions are still neck-and-neck — even in the offseason.

Fresh off an NBA championship, the Lakers are the early favorites in Vegas to repeat with 8-5 odds, according to the Los Angeles Times. The Celtics are just behind the Lakers with 3-1 odds at MGM/Mirage.

Both teams made huge acquisitions in the offseason, with the Lakers signing Ron Artest and the Celtics getting Rasheed Wallace. Both players have proven to be somewhat unpredictable in their careers, yet not enough for the oddsmakers to diminish their new teams' chances.

The Cleveland Cavaliers have the third-highest odds to win at nearly 4-1, with the Magic (13-2) and the Spurs (7-1) just behind.

While both the Celtics and Lakers made key additions to their teams, the Lakers still face the possibility of losing Lamar Odom to free agency. That possibility, however, won't sink the Lakers, according to the oddsmakers.

"We didn't change anything when they got Artest, and if they lose Odom it'll just be a wash," Jay Kornegay, executive director of the Las Vegas Hilton's Race and Sports book, told the Times. "Odom's a component, but he's not a star. As that team has already shown, if they lose someone, they'll find someone else."

At Hilton's Race and Sports book, the Lakers are 2-1 favorites, with the Cavs (3-1) in second ahead of the Celtics (5-1).

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