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Cavs vs. Warriors: What the experts are predicting for next season

Kevin Durant LeBron james Cavs Warriors cavs warriors
Garrett Ellwood l Getty Images

With two months to go before the first throw of the 2017-18 NBA season, top sports betting pundits have already revealed who they predict will walk away with the title next June, and for the Cleveland Cavaliers, this could be good news.

Despite losing out on last year’s championship in a valiant effort against Oakland’s Golden State Warriors, the Cavs remain among the bookmakers’ top odds-on favourites to get their own back come next year’s final.

A double run for the Warriors?

Naturally, given their impressive form in the 2017 Finals, the reigning champions have once again been named as most expert’s outright favorite.

Though odds do have a tendency to vary among bookies, the majority put the odds on the Golden State Warriors capturing their sixth NBA title at an average of 5-11.

Meanwhile, on a global basis, international sports markets are currently offering 4/7 odds of Golden State capturing back-to-back titles for the first time in their history.

Not only would this be significant in itself, but the victory would also mark the team’s third title in four years, the only time the California team have accomplished such a feat.

Credit has to be given to Steve Kerr and his men for having a better run in recent years than arguably any other time since the club was founded in 1946, but that certainly doesn’t mean success in the new season is anywhere near guaranteed.

Cavs predicted to pose a bigger threat to Warriors

Hot on the Warriors’ tale is, once again, the Cavaliers, who only narrowly missed out on being named odds-on favourites by virtue of last season’s NBA Finals loss.

This time around, the experts are predicting Tyronn Lue will push his side further towards dethroning the Warriors come next season.

Those planning to place their NBA bets at William Hill, for example, will find odds of 7/2 in favor of the Cavs taking the title in 2018, a figure replicated elsewhere in the US sports betting market, where odds typically average 4/1.

Overcoming the odds

Sure, being named the second odds-on favorite for success in the new season is a good start, but let’s face it, no team should be going into the 2017-18 NBA season with the sole aim of playing runner up.

Having tasted their first-and-only, to date, NBA championship title in 2016, the Cavaliers already know what it takes to reach the pinnacle of the competition. Yet after last season’s finale, they also know how easy it can be to let victory slip from their fingertips.

Going into the new campaign, the Cavs will be looking to overcome the odds by claiming their second championship, and that means getting one past the Warriors, the only team who appear to pose a serious threat to their title aspirations.

As noted recently, this is something the team are already working on, with speculation that the recent signing of point guard Derrick Rose was done specifically for the former New York Knicks star’s reputation for holding his own against Golden State in a way that few other player are capable of.

That said, Rose alone may not be enough to overcome the force of the most dominant side currently playing in the NBA.

For the Cavs to truly overcome the odds and capture that elusive second title, work must be done right across the board to focus on that one goal.

That means curtailing the recent furore surrounding Kyrie Irving’s recent request to be traded to another club, the media circus that follows LeBron James wherever he goes and spending the next few pre-season weeks getting ready to go all out for a place in the final dance come June 2018.

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