Odds to win the NBA Finals: Bucks, Celtics share top spot following Ime Udoka suspension
With under a month to go before the NBA season begins, the Bucks and Celtics are co-favourites on the NBA Finals odds leaderboard. Photo by Steven Senne/AP.

We're inside a month until the NBA's opening night, and some teams' NBA Finals odds are beginning to shift subtly ahead of the new season.

The latest: In the wake of a one-year suspension for head coach Ime Udoka, the Celtics' title odds have slipped enough to put them tied with the Bucks atop the leaderboard. Meanwhile, the Nets returned to relevance with the announced return of Kevin Durant. And lower on the leaderboard, the Cavaliers emerged after a blockbuster trade for Donovan Mitchell.

Check out the latest NBA Finals odds.

NBA Finals odds

Check out the latest odds to win the NBA Finals. Click linked odds to add selection to your betslip.

TeamOdds (Sept. 28)Odds (Sept. 23)
Boston Celtics+600+600
Milwaukee Bucks+600+600
Golden State Warriors+650+650
Los Angeles Clippers+700+700
Brooklyn Nets+800+800
Phoenix Suns+900+900
Miami Heat+1,400+1,400
Philadelphia 76ers+1,400+1,400
Denver Nuggets+1,800+1,800
Dallas Mavericks+2,000+2,000
Los Angeles Lakers+2,200+2,200
Memphis Grizzlies+2,200+2,200
Minnesota Timberwolves+3,300+3,300
Cleveland Cavaliers+3,300+3,300
Toronto Raptors+4,000+4,000

Odds as of 4:08 p.m. on 09/28/2022.

Best odds to win the NBA Finals

The favourites: Boston Celtics (+600), Milwaukee Bucks (+600)

Boston, the reigning Eastern Conference champion, spent months atop this leaderboard alone with Milwaukee in the immediate rear. Presumably, the recent suspension of Udoka is what caused things to even up.

Still, the Celtics have a formidable squad.

And coming up two games shy of last year's NBA title is one thing, but the Celtics improved this offseason with the acquisition of Malcolm Brogdon. The guard averaged 18.9 points, 5.1 rebounds and 6.3 assists over his past three seasons.

All it cost the Celtics to bring him in was a 2023 first-rounder and five bench players. It's easy to be excited about Brogdon running the floor alongside Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart, Grant Williams and Robert Williams next season.

Last summer's two-month playoff run is bound to help Tatum (24 years old) and Brown (25) in their continued development and pursuit of stardom. The same is true for 23-year-old Grant Williams, who shot 40.6% from 3-point range during the regular season and playoffs.

Unfortunately, we'll have to wait 8-to-12 weeks for the return of Robert Williams, who recently underwent knee surgery.

Milwaukee knows how to summit the NBA mountain, having won the Larry O'Brien Trophy in 2021.

The Bucks didn't make any moves as splashy as the Brogdon trade, but they did bring in a solid contributor in Joe Ingles. And their top five players from the championship team (based on win shares) are still around, led by two-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo.

Other NBA Finals choices

Best value: Denver Nuggets (+1,800)

If you want to take a shot outside the 15-to-1 range, why not back a team with the reigning MVP and two prospective studs coming off injury?

Nikola Jokic was the class of the NBA this past season, setting career highs in points per game (27.1), rebounds per game (13.8) and shooting percentage (58.3%). He'll be flanked once again by Kitchener, Ont., native Jamal Murray, who missed all of the 2021-22 campaign with a knee injury and will be eased back into a full workload.

Then there's Michael Porter Jr., the 14th overall selection from five drafts ago, who missed all but nine games last year due to a back injury. As a 41.9% 3-point shooter in the early stages of his career, his return would be awfully helpful.

So between Murray and Porter, the Nuggets have two sizeable what-ifs that could make this pick look like fool's gold.

But Jokic's MVP-calibre play is a great place to work from, and this team did win 48 games while playing nowhere near full strength.

The hope of a healthy Murray and MPJ, mixed with Jokic's excellence — and some expected growth for rising sophomore Bones Hyland — gives the Nuggets some hope as a mid-tier championship contender.

Denver reportedly inquired about Durant earlier this summer, but the team's odds didn't move in light of his commitment to Brooklyn.

Team to watch: Brooklyn Nets (+800)

Between Durant, Kyrie Irving and Ben Simmons, the Brooklyn Nets have stirred up enough drama this summer to warrant their own soap opera.

All trade rumours and other grievances can be cast aside now, and we're back to where we began: Brooklyn is a very good team with a foundation to compete for a title.

The Nets have been perched as high as +700 and as low as +2,800 throughout the offseason as uncertainty swirled. If you got in at the right time, congratulations.

If you'd wanted to let the dust settle on Durant's situation first, that's OK too. Grabbing this team at 8-to-1 feels reasonable now that we know its stars are sticking together.

As the East's No. 7 seed last year, the Nets were swept in the first round by the Celtics. But they lost those four games by a combined 18 points.

Tossing Simmons into the equation creates an unknown component. But the three-time all-star won't be ball dominant in the way James Harden was, and he brings value on both sides of the ball.

In his last healthy season, 2020-21, Simmons ranked eighth among guards in net rating (plus-8.0).

NBA Finals odds notes

  • The Cavaliers (+3,300), who haven't made the playoffs in the post-LeBron era (four seasons), put themselves on the map by dealing for Mitchell, who's been an all-star the past three seasons with the Jazz. Adding Mitchell cost the Cavs three unprotected first-round picks and three ex-lottery selections. But with Mitchell playing alongside rising star Darius Garland, Cleveland will have one of the most athletic, dynamic backcourts in the league.
  • Kawhi Leonard missed all of 2021-22 with a knee injury, but his return helps put the Clippers (+700) in great shape to compete for the franchise's first title. Los Angeles reached the Western Conference finals for the first time in 2020-21, even though Leonard injured his knee midway through the conference semis that year.
NorthStar Bets editorial Insiders have no influence, direct or otherwise, over the setting of odds advertised on our platforms.