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The Nets, not the Lakers, are now the favorites to win NBA title, oddsmakers say

James Harden puts an arm around teammate Kyrie Irving.
Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden, left, embraces teammate Kyrie Irving during a game against the Orlando Magic on Feb. 25 in New York.
(Kathy Willens / Associated Press)

It was bound to happen.

The Brooklyn Nets keep picking up victories and all-star players.

The Lakers have been piling up losses and injuries.

So it was only a matter of time before the Nets supplanted the Lakers as the favorite to win this year’s NBA title, as they did Monday morning, according to the oddsmakers at BetOnline.ag.

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Fresh off the signing of former Clipper Blake Griffin, the Nets have been given 13-5 odds to win the first NBA championship in franchise history (they won two ABA titles before the leagues merged in 1976). The Lakers are listed at 14-5.

Lakers star LeBron James said the decision to receive the COVID-19 vaccine was a ‘private thing’ when asked if he’d encourage other NBA players to get it.

Griffin, a six-time all-star, is joining a Nets roster that already includes superstars Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and James Harden, a former league MVP who was acquired from the Houston Rockets on Jan. 13. Brooklyn has won 10 of their last 11 games.

Meanwhile, the Lakers have been spiraling downward, losing seven of their last 11 games with star power forward Anthony Davis out because of a leg injury. Other key players have missed time during that stretch, including Dennis Schroder (four games, NBA’s health and safety protocols). Superstar LeBron James, 36, has been racking up the minutes of late but got a game off Wednesday against the Sacramento Kings, the Lakers’ last contest before the All-Star break. They resume play Friday when hosting the Indiana Pacers.

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The top five is rounded out by the Clippers (11-2 odds), Utah Jazz (7-1) and Milwaukee Bucks (8-1).

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