Raptors, Thunder Bogart All The Value In NBA Futures

Monday, February 18, 2019 6:46 PM UTC

Monday, Feb. 18, 2019 6:46 PM UTC

Both the Toronto Raptors and Oklahoma City Thunder are beefing up for the playoffs. From a value standpoint, they’re the best NBA picks to win the title.

Jason’s 2018-19 NBA picks record: 12-11 ATS, 0-2 ML (minus-4.35 units), 17-7 Totals

Here we are at the All-Star break, and it’s pretty much as everyone outside the Bay Area feared: The Golden State Warriors will probably win their fourth championship in five years. They’re overwhelming –230 favorites on the NBA odds board at Bovada, going 10-1 SU and 5-6 ATS since DeMarcus Cousins made his Dubs debut. Hey, at least they won’t be playing the Cleveland Cavaliers this time.

The Warriors (41-16 SU, 24-32-1 ATS) may have the best starting five in all of time and space, but when it comes to this year’s title, they don’t belong in your NBA picks. According to the fine folks at FiveThirtyEight, Golden State has a 60-percent chance of winning, which “only” works out to –150 using the glorious SBR Odds Converter. So forget about these chumps, and consider laying some wood on these two value picks:

Toronto Raptors (+750)

Everything is going according to plan Up North. The Raptors (43-16 SU, 26-33 ATS) have one of the best records in the league despite taking the regular season for what it is: a warm-up for the playoffs. Kawhi Leonard (plus-5.3 BPM) has gotten stronger with each passing week, while missing 16 games thus far for maintenance and repair. Pascal Siakam (plus-3.5 BPM) has played at an All-Star level in his third year as a pro. Kyle Lowry (plus-3.0 BPM) made his fifth straight All-Star Game for Toronto.

Then GM Masai Ujiri dropped the hammer. He sent Jonas Valanciunas (plus-1.3 BPM), Delon Wright (plus-1.1 BPM) and C.J. Miles (minus-3.4 BPM) to the Memphis Grizzlies last week in exchange for Marc Gasol (plus-3.0 BPM). It’s a risky deal, sending out two valuable young players for the 34-year old Gasol. But it definitely gives Toronto a better chance of winning the title, and Ujiri has replenished the Bench Mob by signing Jeremy Lin (minus-2.2 BPM), a quality offensive playmaker who can handle both guard positions – and has already shown some chemistry working with Lowry. FiveThirtyEight gives Toronto a 14-percent chance of winning their first title, which works out to +614 for a vig-free equivalent in American odds.

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Markieff Morris is reportedly signing with the Thunder. (Via @ShamsCharania) pic.twitter.com/pPozpAQXiz

— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) February 14, 2019

Oklahoma City Thunder (+1600)

If you’re looking for a bigger payout with your futures bet, Oklahoma City (37-20 SU, 33-24 ATS) is your huckleberry. Their chances of winning are pegged at 8 percent, or +1150 using the Odds Converter. Paul George (plus-6.4 BPM) has played remarkably well, and Russell Westbrook (plus-5.9 BPM) has wisely cut down on his shot attempts lately, allowing George to flourish. Depth remains a concern in OKC, but there’s still plenty of time to scoop up someone off the waiver wire – someone like Markieff Morris (minus-2.1 BPM), who’s expected to join the club this week. The rich get richer, folks.

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