The highly anticipated 2017 NBA Finals began in Oakland on June 1 between the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers, but online sportsbook 5Dimes already is looking ahead to next season.
The Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers are the first teams to ever meet in three straight NBA Finals. Do I hear four in a row? Sports bettors are an impatient bunch, and you can already wager at A+-rated sportsbook 5Dimes on whether the Dubs or Cavs win another championship next year.
Golden State is +115 to win this year’s Finals on NBA odds and then repeat in 2018, with and any other result at -145. Taking out the 2017 Finals, the Warriors are -147 to win a championship next season and the field is +107. Bad news for the rest of the NBA: Kevin Durant is reportedly willing to accept less than a full maximum contract this offseason as a free agent to help keep the core of the team intact.
Durant is eligible to sign an extension worth $35.4 million a year this summer. To give him all that, the Dubs would have to renounce their rights to their two best reserves, free-agents-to-be Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston, to create room under the salary cap. If Durant were willing to accept a bit less than $32 million next year, the Warriors wouldn’t have to renounce their rights to Iguodala or Livingston and could re-sign both using their “Bird rights.” Durant always said his move to Golden State from Oklahoma City wasn’t about money. Not that making "only" $32 million makes him eligible for food stamps.
Cleveland is +1100 to win this year’s Finals and next season’s, which would of course be three titles in a row. Any other result is -1700. For just the 2018 title, the Cavs are +305 and the field -425.
The Cavs already have more than $126 million in salary guaranteed for next season, well above the projected cap of $101 million. Their two biggest free agents are guards Kyle Korver and Deron Williams. Those wouldn’t be huge losses, but both are solid contributors. There’s always the chance that a good player on the market could take a mid-level exception valued at $5,192,000 for next year to come to Cleveland, but I think you can rule out guys like Dwyane Wade or Chris Paul taking a massive pay cut just to chase a ring with James.
NBA free agency opens July 1, but teams can’t officially sign free agents until July 6.