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NBA Playoff Picture
Current Odds to Win the NBA Championship
The NBA playoff picture is clearing up with only two days left in the regular season. The Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers both clinched seeds on Tuesday without even playing a game. That's because the Miami Heat (46-19) and Los Angeles Clippers (40-25) each lost their games, enabling the Bulls (48-16) and Lakers (41-24) to lock into their spots in the Eastern and Western Conference, respectively.
Chicago will be the top seed in the East for the second year in a row and visits the Indiana Pacers (42-23) on Wednesday in the first of the team's last two games. The Bulls finish up the regular season by hosting the Cleveland Cavaliers (21-43) on Thursday, and they are still playing for home-court advantage throughout the NBA Finals since the San Antonio Spurs have an identical record. However, the Spurs would lose the tiebreaker since they lost the lone regular-season meeting between the teams at home back on February 29, 96-89. Chicago head coach Tom Thibodeau has already said he will not rest his starters in the final two games.
The Pacers will be the third seed in the East and likely face the Orlando Magic (36-28) if they can hold on to the sixth seed with a home win against the Charlotte Bobcats (7-57) on Wednesday. That seems like a sure thing considering the Bobcats have dropped a franchise-record 21 straight games. The Magic are riding a three-game losing streak and will be without All-Star center Dwight Howard in the postseason after he underwent back surgery.
In the Western Conference, the Lakers clinched the Pacific Division title and the third seed in the West when the Clippers lost 109-102 on the road Tuesday to the Atlanta Hawks (39-26). The Clips are now tied with the Memphis Grizzlies and need to win on Wednesday against the New York Knicks (34-30) to have any shot at securing home court in their first-round playoff series.
Memphis hosts Orlando on Thursday and would lose the tiebreaker with LA by virtue of losing two of the three regular-season meetings. San Antonio has already clinched the top seed in the West and will play the Utah Jazz (35-30), who grabbed the final spot in the conference with a 100-88 win over the Phoenix Suns (33-32) on Tuesday.
The Knicks also have an identical record as the Philadelphia 76ers and own the tiebreaker as they battle them for the seventh seed in the East. The mindset of both teams is highly questionable though going into the last two games because they are essentially playing for the right to face either the Bulls or Heat in the first round.
Current Odds to win NBA Championship
Courtesy of 5 Dimes Sportsbook
Miami Heat +200
Chicago Bulls +325
Oklahoma City Thunder +350
San Antonio Spurs +600
Los Angeles Lakers +1400
Boston Celtics +2000
Memphis Grizzlies +2500
Los Angeles Clippers +2800
Dallas Mavericks +3500
Indiana Pacers +4000
New York Knicks +4000
Atlanta Hawks +10000
Denver Nuggets +11000
Orlando Magic +12500
Philadelphia 76ers +12500
Utah Jazz +27500
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