NBA Playoffs First Round Series Odds- Blazers Set to Upset LA?

  • Odds on each first round NBA playoff series are available below
  • The Bucks and Raptors should have an easy time advancing in the East
  • LeBron and the Lakers could be in tough versus Bubble MVP Damian Lillard and the Trail Blazers

While the Stanley Cup playoffs are always a crapshoot, the NBA postseason usually stays on script. However, there could be some magic in store inside the Disney World bubble with a number of juicy first-round matchups capable of producing upsets.

Let’s look at the odds for all eight playoff series in the Eastern and Western conferences and make some picks.

2020 NBA PLAYOFFS FIRST ROUND SERIES ODDS

Team Odds To Win Series
Utah Jazz +190
Denver Nuggets -220
Team Odds To Win Series
Dallas Mavericks +500
Los Angeles Clippers -650
Team Odds To Win Series
Oklahoma City Thunder +125
Houston Rockets -145
Team Odds To Win Series
Portland Trail Blazers +395
Los Angeles Lakers -500
Team Odds To Win Series
Brooklyn Nets +1250
Toronto Raptors -3000
Team Odds To Win Series
Philadelphia 76ers +340
Boston Celtics -420
Team Odds To Win Series
Orlando Magic +2000
Milwaukee Bucks -10000
Team Odds To Win Series
Miami Heat -310
Indiana Pacers +260

EASTERN FAVORITES WILL CRUISE

Despite an ugly 3-5 record in the bubble, Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Bucks (-10000) should dispatch of the Magic (+2000) in four games after sweeping Orlando in the regular season and leading in all but 11 of the 192 minutes played between the two clubs. If Milwaukee were to drop even a game or two, it could be a bad omen for their title hopes.

Similarly, the defending champion Raptors (-3000) shouldn’t receive much push back from a Nets (+1250) team missing Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving.

TJ Warren scored 174 points in the first five games of the restart, tied for the fifth most by a Pacers (+260) player over a five-game span in their NBA history and the most since 2009, according to Elias Sports Bureau data. Warren’s heated rivalry with Jimmy Butler should make Indiana’s series with the Heat (-310) excellent TV, but expect Miami to take care of business in 6 games.

Prior to the 2019-20 season, we warned against picking the 76ers (+340) and their hilariously ill-conceived roster to win the Atlantic division. And, after the Ben Simmons injury, Philadelphia’s big-man laden roster has little hope against a Celtics (-420) club that has a healthy Kemba Walker and budding superstar Jayson Tatum.

WEST COULD GET WILD

Damian Lillard reaffirmed himself as one of the NBA’s most clutch superstars, powering his Trail Blazers (+395) into the eighth seed with 40- and 50- and 60-point games in the bubble. After defeating Memphis in the league’s first-ever play-in game, Portland now draws a first-round matchup with a Lakers (-500) team that went 3-5 after the season restart. 

With nothing to play for, LeBron James, Anthony Davis and co. were likely just shaking off the rust, however, the team is also trying to work in a new rotation after losing guards Avery Bradley (COVID opt-out) and Rajon Rondo (fractured thumb) and adding Dion Waiters, Markieff Morris and JR Smith.

If Jusuf Nurkic (22 points, 21 rebounds in Saturday’s play-in game vs. Memphis) and CJ McCollum can continue their hot play, Dame and the Blazers could pull off a stunner. Portland in 7.

With the health of Russell Westbrook in question, Oklahoma City (+125) is also a strong upset pick over Houston (-145) as Chris Paul will be out for blood after being unceremoniously dumped by the Rockets last offseason. Thunder in 7 games.

Finally, we like the favored Nuggets (-220) in 6 games over the Jazz (+190), and Kawhi Leonard’s Clippers (-650) to outlast Luka Doncic and the Mavericks in a hard-fought 6-game series.

 

Steve Dominey

Steve has almost 15 years of experience in marketing, PR and sports television. After acquiring a Journalism degree from Carleton University, he assembled highlight packs for Canada's most-watched sports network (TSN) before transitioning to a career in communications. He describes himself as a good father, great dog owner, and mediocre gambler and husband.