Quick Links

Sportsbook odds for Wizards to win NBA title going up

Sportsbook odds for Wizards to win NBA title going up

The 28-20 Wizards continue to climb the ladder in the standings and the sportsbook Bovada is taking notice. According to their latest release of betting odds, the Wizards have significantly improved their chance to win the NBA championship.

On Jan. 3, Bovada had the Wizards with the 20th-best odds of winning it all, same as the lowly Los Angeles Lakers. Now, just one month later, the Wizards are tied for the eighth-best odds, same as the Utah Jazz and Oklahoma City Thunder.

Here are Bovada's current title odds: 

Golden State Warriors                          5/7
Cleveland Cavaliers                             13/5
San Antonio Spurs                               15/2
Los Angeles Clippers                           14/1
Houston Rockets                                  16/1
Toronto Raptors                                    25/1
Boston Celtics                                      33/1
Oklahoma City Thunder                       66/1
Utah Jazz                                              66/1
Washington Wizards                             66/1

Since the morning of Jan.3, when Bovada put out those odds, the Wizards have gone 12-3. They have moved all the way up to fourth in the East and currently sit just 1 1/2 games out of third and two games out of the No. 2 seed.

[RELATED: Wizards, Caps end month undefeated at Verizon Center]

Bovada has the Wizards tied for fourth among teams chasing an Eastern Conference title:

Cleveland Cavaliers                   2/7
Toronto Raptors                         6/1
Boston Celtics                            9/1
Atlanta Hawks                           22/1
Washington Wizards                  22/1

Both of those sets of odds reflect well on the Wizards, but there are a few categories they may feel slighted in. For one, the Wizards have the second-best odds to win their division despite currently sitting in first place ahead of the Hawks. The Wizards, in fact, have not won a division in 37 years which is the longest drought among all NBA teams:

Atlanta Hawks                           10/11
Washington Wizards                  1/1
Charlotte Hornets                       16/1
Miami Heat                            Off the Board
Orlando Magic                       Off the Board

The other category the Wizards may have a bone to pick with is MVP odds. John Wall is now off the board with James Harden, Russell Westbrook, LeBron James, Kevin Durant and Kawhi Leonard leading the charge.

[RELATED: Marcin Gortat excited for upcoming Polish Heritage Night]


Quick Links

How drawing up a play in the interview process helped sell the Wizards on Troy Brown

How drawing up a play in the interview process helped sell the Wizards on Troy Brown

While meeting with Oregon's Troy Brown during the pre-draft interview process, evaluators from the Washington Wizards issued him an on-the-spot challenge. Head coach Scott Brooks pulled out a dry-erase clipboard and a pen. He wanted to see Brown draw up a play.

This is a test Brooks has administered before to other players. Some have failed miserably.

"It sounds easy to throw a board at somebody in front of a big group and say 'okay draw a play' and I have seen many plays drawn, and I have seen it where there are not five players on the floor," Brooks said.

That wasn't the case with Brown. He didn't just draw up one play, he drew up several. One in particular came to mind when asked by reporters on Thursday night soon after the Wizards took him 15th overall in the first round of the NBA Draft.

“I think it was a situation where we were down by two or something like that," he said. "It was like a back screen into a slip, and then the fade three and they gave you a lot of various options to cause mismatches on the court for a last minute shot to either go ahead, or even attack the basket for a layup to go into overtime.”

NBC Sports Washington analyst Cory Alexander, a veteran of seven NBA seasons, demonstrated what Brown's play looked like on a whiteboard:

The Xs and Os of basketball flow effortlessly for Brown and Wizards' brass couldn't help but be impressed.

"He really understands the game. I think for a kid that is 18 years old, that is rare but he just has a good feel," Brooks said. 

"We were impressed with his character and the type of person he is and his basketball knowledge," team president Ernie Grunfeld said. "Obviously, like any young player, he has a lot of work to do but he has a lot of the intangibles that I think you need in today's game."

Smarts are a big part of what makes Brown a good basketball player. He isn't a particularly explosive athlete, with a modest 33-inch max vertical leap, but he boasts a 6-foot-10 wingspan and solid agility. Being in the right place at the right time and knowing how to operate an offense helps him make the most of his natural abilities.

Passing is where his basketball IQ comes in handy. Brown is unusually good at distributing for a 6-foot-7 small forward. He averaged 3.2 assists as a freshman at Oregon and nine times had five assists or more in a game.

He can pass like a point guard and the Wizards are excited to implement that skill into their offense.

"Passing is contagious. We’ve been pretty good the last two years and with talking about that how we even want to take another step," Brooks said. "He has the ability to make a lot of quick plays and his ball handling is pretty good for a guy his size. That is one thing I was impressed in his workout last week or when we had him. He is able to take the contact and use his strong frame to get inside the key and make plays.”


NBC Sports Washington is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Quick Links

Wizards Tipoff podcast: Breaking down the Wizards' 2018 draft class


Wizards Tipoff podcast: Breaking down the Wizards' 2018 draft class

On the latest episode of the Wizards Tipoff podcast presented by Greenberg and Bederman, Chase Hughes and Chris Miller analyze the Wizards' two picks the night of the draft.

They went in-depth on first round pick Troy Brown, Jr. and why the Wizards took him when some big names were still on the board. They also broke down why the Wizards chose to pick a draft-and-stash guy in the second round.

You can listen to the episode right here:

You can download the podcast on Apple Podcasts right here and on Google Play. If you like the show please tell your friends!