NBA

Are LeBron James and the Lakers the NBA Finals Favorites Heading Into the Season Restart?

Congratulations, NBA fans — you made it. After four painstaking months, basketball is finally back Thursday as the Utah Jazz face off against the New Orleans Pelicans and the battle of Los Angeles pins the Lakers against the Clippers. Both LA teams are high up on the odds board for the 2020 NBA Finals winner, but who is the favorite to take home the title?

The NBA is finally back Thursday after a four-month hiatus

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All the way back in March, Rudy Gobert produced the positive COVID-19 test that changed professional sports as we know them. The NBA immediately postponed play, and fans endured a grueling summer with no basketball.

After a four-month hiatus, the NBA is finally back, just with a different feel. The entire league will operate inside a “bubble” in Orlando, Fla. There will be no fans in attendance the rest of the season, so the eventual champions will have to celebrate in silence.

The Jazz and Pelicans will kick off the season restart Thursday at 6:30 p.m. ET. It’s a perfect matchup to get us back underway, as the Jazz were at the forefront of the NBA suspension, and Zion Williamson is, well, Zion Williamson.

In the nightcap, the Lakers and Clippers will duel it out for the best in the West. The two LA teams are the biggest favorites to take home the 2020 NBA championship, but there are plenty of teams right on their tails.

There are seven NBA teams priced at better than 20/1 to win the title

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The Lakers and Clippers are the prohibited favorites to win the 2020 NBA Finals, but the season is more wide open than you might think.

The Milwaukee Bucks, who have dominated the Eastern Conference all season, sit tied with the Clippers at +325 odds. Behind the big three, there’s a significant drop-off before the next team. The Lakers, Clippers, and Bucks all have better than 4/1 odds, and the next-best is all the way up to 14/1.

The Boston Celtics and Houston Rockets both sit at 14/1. The Philadelphia 76ers and reigning champion Toronto Raptors come in next at 18/1. It wouldn’t be surprising to see any of these teams make a run at the Finals.

LeBron James and the Lakers are the NBA Finals favorites at +240

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Every sportsbook has different odds for each team, but one thing remains the same across the board — the Lakers are the odds-on favorites to win the 2020 NBA title.

LeBron James has his most talented teammate ever in Anthony Davis. With seasoned veterans such as Rajon Rondo, Danny Green, Dwight Howard, and J.R. Smith also on the roster, the 2020 Lakers give James maybe his best supporting cast since his Miami Heat days.

Are the Lakers worth a bet as the NBA favorites?

Betting odds courtesy of BetOnline as of July 30