We’re down to the Final Four for the 2012 NBA Championship and Bovada has the odds for us. The big favorite right now is the San Antonio Spurs at 13/10 and for good reason. They’ve been there and they’ve done that. They (arguably) have the best coaching staff of any of the remaining teams and they are facing an inexperienced Thunder team in the Conference Finals. It’s easy to see why the bookmakers think they could make an impact and win it all. The last ride of the San Antonio Spurs is a very intriguing narrative heading into the last two rounds.
Of course, that doesn’t change the fact that the Thunder are a very dangerous team with tons of scoring weapons. What they lack in experience they make up for in athleticism and they can simply play at a level that the Spurs can’t keep up with. When things are going right for the Thunder there are very few teams that can keep up with them. From a pure, fun to watch perspective I am rooting for the Thunder and Heat to make the Finals as that series just has all the elements of a modern day Celtics/Lakers type of match-up. Kevin Durant is the closest we have to a rival for Lebron James from a talent perspective and I’d love to see them face-off. Plus, Westbrook and Wade are cut from the same cloth and could have a highly competitive showdown. I really want that series.
The Heat, at 3/2, should definitely be in the Finals. No offense to the Celtics, but at 12/1 it’s clear that the bookmakers don’t have much faith in them. They are an aging team on their last legs going against a team that is hellbent on winning a championship. Unless something crazy happens I can’t see Boston coming close to even making the Finals. If they don’t, it’ll be interesting to see where the Celtics go from here. The core of players isn’t getting any younger and the Heat aren’t going anywhere so the front office of Boston will have to make a decision on where they go next. It’s hard to imagine Paul Pierce playing in a different uniform, but that might be a reality that Boston fans need to accept going forward. Stay tuned.
Personally, I see Miami as the favorite heading into the Conference Finals. The Thunder and Spurs series will be long and it will be hard while the Heat could finish this one in four or five games. The Big Three is just so locked in right now and I honestly can’t see Lebron not grabbing his first title. He’s come so close too many times and he is just so on his game right now. Especially after the way things went last year, I just can’t see the same type of collapse. This is the Heat’s year. No matter who comes out of the West though, this Finals has the potential to be an all-time great.
San Antonio Spurs 13/10
Miami Heat 3/2
Oklahoma City Thunder 17/4
Boston Celtics 12/1