NBA Championship Odds and Best Bets: Celtics vs Pacers, Timberwolves vs Mavericks

Jordan Ramsay | Updated May 21, 2024

NBA: Playoffs-Cleveland Cavaliers at Boston Celtics

We're down to the NBA's version of the Final Four as the Boston Celtics, Indiana Pacers, Minnesota Timberwolves and Dallas Mavericks are the last teams standing in the fight for the 2024 NBA Championship.

Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals tips-off Tuesday night in Boston, while the Western Conference Finals begin Wednesday night in Minnesota.

Who has the edge to win the 2024 NBA Championship? Let’s take a look.

Eastern Conference Finals: Indiana Pacers vs. Boston Celtics

Regular season series edge: BOS, 3-2

Boston is a heavy -900 favourite to win the Eastern Conference Finals and reach the NBA Finals for the second time in the last three seasons. After finishing with a league-best 64-18 regular season record, the Celtics absolutely pummelled their way through the first two rounds of the playoffs, beating Miami and Cleveland each in five games.

The Pacers finished the regular season with a 47-35 record and only avoided the play-in tournament because they held the tiebreaker over Philadelphia. They’ve also had a tougher route in the playoffs. Indiana took out Milwaukee in six games before going the distance against the Knicks to win in seven.

Despite some inconsistency in the playoffs, the Celtics continue to be led by All-Star Jayson Tatum, who is still managing to average 24.3 points and 10.4 rebounds. Fellow All-Star Jaylen Brown and Derrick White complete the high scoring attack. Brown is averaging 23.1 points and 6.9 rebounds, while White’s numbers have jumped in the postseason to 18.2 points on 43.5 per cent shooting from three.

This series should be a great offensive showdown. The Pacers led the NBA with 123.3 points per game during the regular season, the sixth-highest average in NBA history. Tyrese Haliburton and Pascal Siakam have led the attack throughout the playoffs. In the second round against the Knicks, Haliburton averaged 21.3 points on 53.8 per cent shooting from the field and 43.9 per cent from three. Siakam averaged 20 points while shooting 52.8 per cent from the field and 40 per cent from three.

Best series bet: Derrick White to have most threes in the series (+175)

Western Conference Finals: Dallas Mavericks vs. Minnesota Timberwolves

Regular season series edge: MIN, 3-1

After taking three of four games against Dallas in the regular season, Minnesota enters the Western Conference Finals as -185 favourites to reach their first NBA Finals since winning the championship in 2011.

At 56-26, the T-Wolves had the third-best record in the Western Conference during the regular season. They’ve had two very different playoff series’ in the postseason. Minnesota swept Phoenix in the first round then went the distance against the defending champion Nuggets after trailing 3-2 following Game 5.

The Mavs were 50-32 in the regular season, avoiding the play-in tournament with a three-game cushion. They’re coming off two six-game series’, taking out the Clippers in the first round and the Thunder in the second round. This is Dallas’ second conference finals appearance in the last three years, after losing to Golden State in five games in 2022.

Minnesota’s Anthony Edwards has elevated to superstar status this year and the playoffs have been no exception. “Ant-Man” drives the offence, averaging 28.9 points and 6.2 rebounds in the postseason. Karl-Anthony Towns and Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert have also been key. Towns is putting up 18.8 points and 9.3 rebounds, while Gobert is averaging 10.9 boards and shutting down some of the league’s biggest stars.

Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving control the Mavericks. Doncic is averaging just under a triple-double with 27.3 points, 9.7 rebounds and 9.1 assists. Irving is averaging 21.3 points and a team-high 1.4 steals. P.J. Washington and Derrick Jones Jr. have also played vital roles and were major factors against OKC in the second round.

Best series bet: Series to last seven games (+220)