Gambling website downgrades Lakers’ chances to win title to 100-1
While the Lakers are optimistic on the second day of training camp, others aren’t quite so bullish.
On Wednesday, gambling website Bovada downgraded the Lakers’ chances at winning a title for the 2015-16 season to 100-1.
The Lakers had climbed to odds of 50-1 as of July 6 on the Bovada books, as the team worked to navigate through the summer’s free agency frenzy. Before the draft, on June 17, Bovada gave the Lakers 66-1 odds to win the 2016 championship.
The team selected Ohio State guard D’Angelo Russell with the second overall pick in the NBA draft on June 25. The Lakers pursued big men LaMarcus Aldridge, DeAndre Jordan and Greg Monroe but were rebuffed.
Instead, the Lakers acquired center Roy Hibbert in trade from the Indiana Pacers, while also adding veteran guard Lou Williams and forward Brandon Bass in free agency. The team also re-signed Metta World Peace, who played recently in Italy.
Perhaps Bovada isn’t sold on the Lakers’ haul or wasn’t overly impressed by the play of Russell and second-year forward Julius Randle on the Lakers’ summer league squad in Las Vegas.
The Cleveland Cavaliers currently have the best overall odds in the Eastern Conference at 11-4. The San Antonio Spurs (3-1) are on top in the Western Conference, followed by the Golden State Warriors (15-1), Oklahoma City Thunder (17-2), Clippers (10-1), Houston Rockets (16-1) and Memphis Grizzlies (25-1).
The Lakers do have better chances than three Western teams, including the Sacramento Kings (250-1), Denver Nuggets (250-1) and Minnesota Timberwolves (150-1). Bovada also gives the Utah Jazz, Portland Trail Blazers and Phoenix Suns equal 100-1 odds to the Lakers.
Should the Lakers beat out the all six, they would still place ninth in the conference, needing to leapfrog at least one additional team -- perhaps the Dallas Mavericks or New Orleans Pelicans, both given 50-1 chances at a title.
Whether the odds successfully project the order in the West won’t be clear until April, but on paper, the top six teams look like postseason locks. The Pelicans should also finish in the top eight, as long as forward Anthony Davis has an injury-free year.
The Mavericks may be vulnerable, already facing health issues along with significant roster turnover.
Of course the Lakers have a long way to go to beat out quality teams such as the Jazz and Suns.
Last season the Lakers won just 21 games. The Pelicans were the eighth and final seed with a 45-37 record.
MORE ON LAKERS
All things Lakers, all the time.
Get all the Lakers news you need in Tania Ganguli's weekly newsletter.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.