NBA Betting: Is It Time to Consider Betting on the Thunder to Win the NBA Finals?

Michael Savio pic
By:
Michael Savio
01/04/2024
NBA

Highlights

  • Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is the team’s oldest starter at 25-years-old
  • The Thunder are currently +2300 to win the NBA title
  • All five OKC starters are averaging over 10 points per game

Things have not gone well for the Oklahoma City Thunder over the last decade, but that appears to be changing in the 2023-24 season. The team currently has the second-best record in the Western Conference, just one game behind the Timberwolves. Their roster is filled with young talent, and they have impressive wins, but NBA betting sites still have as a bit of a longshot to win the NBA title.

Below, we will share the current odds to win this season’s NBA Championship and provide insights into the Thunder to give you everything you need to bet confidently.

Current Odds to Win the NBA Finals 

Despite a surprising starter from many NBA teams, US sportsbooks are not adjusting their NBA Finals odds quite yet. Here are the current top ten odds to win the NBA title, courtesy of FanDuel Sportsbook.

TEAM 

NBA FINALS ODDS 

Boston Celtics 

+320 

Denver Nuggets 

+420 

Milwaukee Bucks 

+460 

Phoenix Suns 

+1100 

Philadelphia 76ers 

+1300 

Los Angeles Clippers 

+1400 

Minnesota Timberwolves 

+1800 

Los Angeles Lakers 

+2000 

Oklahoma City Thunder 

+2300 

Dallas Mavericks 

+3000 

As you can see above, FanDuel currently has the Thunder as the ninth favorite to win a title at +2300. That makes betting on OKC a very tempting proposition, but it’s important to understand why their price is so valuable before doing so.

Why Bookmakers Worry About the Thunder 

There are two big reasons why bookmakers like FanDuel are holding off on making the Thunder a top five favorite.

The first is their youth. Superstar Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (SGA) is the team’s oldest starter at 25-years-old. They have some veterans on the bench, but very few players on this roster have playoff or championship experience. That may not be a problem during the regular season, but it will be when they eventually have to run through a competitive Western Conference in the playoffs.

The second is the fact that Josh Giddey (12.2 PPG, 6.0 RPG, 4.4 APG) could be removed from the team at any moment. The 21-year-old is currently being investigated for a relationship with a minor, which came to light a few weeks ago. While we don’t know where the investigation stands, we do know that it could cost Giddey his NBA career. 

The forward is having a down year, but his loss would be a massive blow for the Thunder.

Why We Are Betting on the Thunder 

The team’s youth and the uncertainty around Giddey are cause for concern, we still love this bet at the current price. One big reason is SGA (31.4 PPG, 5.7 RPG, 6.4 APG, 2.6 SPG), who has been playing at an MVP level in 2023. The guard leads this team on both ends of the court and gives the team a star they can rely on in the clutch.

On top of having an MVP candidate, the Thunder also have a Rookie of the Year candidate in Chet Holmgren (17.6 PPG, 7.6 RPG, 2.7 BPG). The big man is playing after missing almost all his first season, and he has been great this year. He pairs well with SGA and seems destined to become the team’s second superstar.

While Holmgren and SGA are the team’s most promising stars, there is no shortage of talent on the roster. All five starters are averaging over ten points per game this season, helping the team average the fourth most points per game in the league (121.5). That kinds of scoring are important and can help cover if SGA or Holmgren are forced to miss time. 

The OKC defense hasn’t been bad, either. They are allowing 113.1 points per game this season (12th in the NBA) and rank in the top ten in steals (6.8 SPG) and blocks (4.9 BPG). While those numbers aren’t elite, they are certainly enough to support their explosive play on offense. 

The Giddey situation is a big concern, but we believe the team’s current price makes the risk worth taking.

Michael is an avid sports fan and a veteran bettor from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He learned the trade from his grandfather in Las Vegas as a kid. As an adult, Michael started picking games for a small sports betting site and has built it into a career. His experience allows him to provide tips and information to help other bettors improve their game. Michael cheers for all Wisconsin pro teams, the Arizona State Sun Devils (his alma mater), and the Ottawa Senators. He specializes in baseball betting but has extensive experience in football, basketball, and hockey. When he isn’t pouring over stats, he’s spending time with his two young children or hiking and enjoying the outdoors.