Mavs Still Disrespected in NBA Finals Odds Despite Dominant Win Over Timberwolves

The Dallas Mavericks are somehow still significant underdogs in the NBA Finals against the Boston Celtics.
Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Mavericks just wrapped up a dominant Western Conference Finals against the Minnesota Timberwolves, coming away with the impressive series-clinching Game 5 win on the road on Thursday night. Luka Doncic continued to be unstoppable, and he and Kyrie Irving look poised to bring the Mavs their first championship since 2011.

Despite the fact that Dallas has been dominant since the trade deadline and that they won three series against higher seeds in the loaded Western Conference, they are still significant underdogs in the NBA Finals.

2024 NBA Championship Odds

  • Boston Celtics: -220
  • Dallas Mavericks: +184

On FanDuel Sportsbook, the Mavs are given +184 odds while the Celtics are -220. This implies a 65-35% chance of winning the title in favor of Boston.

This certainly doesn't represent the quality of the team the Mavericks have been over the past few months.

Dallas went 21-9 in the regular season after the trades that brought P.J. Washington and Daniel Gafford in. They are currently 12-5 in the playoffs despite not having home-court advantage in any of the series they played. The toughest series they played so far was against the Oklahoma City Thunder and even that one was a relatively easy win that could have been a five-gamer.

The Boston Celtics, on the other hand, are coming to the NBA Finals after a cakewalk of a journey. The Miami Heat, Cleveland Cavaliers, and the Indiana Pacers all suffered injuries to their best players before or during the series.

It's not to say that the Celtics haven't been impressive or dominant. They are 12-2 in the playoffs and looked great for extended stretches in all three series. They were easily the best team in the regular season this year.

However, there will surely be an adjustment period for the Celtics. They simply haven't played a team of Dallas' caliber yet in the playoffs. They haven't been tested in a serious way. The Mavericks, on the other hand, have played multiple high-intensity games, won in clutch situations, and honed their best lineups and strategies.

Plus, the Mavs have Luka Doncic. He is easily the best player in the series and that means something. No team has been able to find an answer for Doncic so far as he is capable of destroying any defensive scheme. The Celtics have elite defensive personnel but expecting them to slow Doncic down may be a tall order.

I don't know whether the Mavs should be favored in the NBA Finals but they surely have a higher chance of winning than the +184 line implies.

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Odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.