The decision of one player has changed the 2015 NBA Championship futures in the time it took that player to say, “Opt out.”
Upon the news that Miami Heat sensation LeBron James will use his opt out clause to explore free agency has created speculation as to where the league’s best all-around player will play next season.
James’ wife posted an Instagram that mentioned Cleveland and almost instantly sports books such as Bovada and topbet shortened the NBA Championship futures for 2014-15 for the Cavaliers.
As soon as James announced he wanted to explore all of his options, bookmakers on betonline and sportsbook.com started receiving wagers on Cleveland prompting adjustments to the championship price of the team.
Back when the lines were opened following the NBA Finals the Cavaliers were posted at odds of 30 to 1 to win the NBA title, only due to a possibility James could opt out of his last year with Miami and return to Cleveland.
Over this past weekend, James’ wife posted the Instagram that said home sweet home and the countdown is on.
Although one news agency said the post only related to a yearly trip the family takes back home in the summer, it caused some bookmakers to shorten the odds for the Cavaliers.
Many of the sportsbooks lowered Cleveland to 15 to 1 and by Tuesday night, the Cavaliers on some sites were as low as 10 to 1.
At the same time, books are hesitant about lengthening the price for Miami too much in order not to be exposed if James decided to remain in Miami. However, most books bumped Miami to 7 to 2 from 3 to 1.
Managers at sportsbooks said the wait now is where James will end up, which will have a huge impact on the NBA Championship futures.
Because the Cavaliers have had their line shortened, many books in turn lengthened a number of other teams’ odds.
The NBA draft on Thursday will have some affect on the futures for the NBA Championship if any large blockbuster trades are made.
However, as of July 1, James can start negotiating with any team in the NBA and where he ultimately decides to play will cause a huge ripple effect on the futures board.
In other NBA news that did not seem to have an effect on the NBA championship futures was the announcement that Tim Duncan has picked up his option for next season and will be playing his 18th season in the NBA, all with the San Antonio Spurs.
Current top five NBA Championship Odds for 2014-15
MIAMI HEAT 7 to 2
OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER 9 to 2
SAN ANTONIO SPURS 15 to 4
LOS ANGELES CLIPPERS 9 to 1
CHICAGO BULLS 17 to 2