Oddsmakers Deem Cleveland Comeback Unlikely

It’s often said that a series doesn’t truly begin until a team loses at home, but oddsmakers don’t seem to believe that holds true when it comes to the 2017 NBA Finals. With the Cleveland Cavaliers falling behind the Golden State Warriors 2-0, the defending champions are given very little chance to come back and win another title.

After the Warriors cruised to a 132-113 Game 2 victory Sunday night, Golden State was made a -2000 favorite to win the series at the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook. Cleveland’s NBA Finals betting odds moved to +1000, and they remain heavy underdogs heading into Game 3.

READ: Kyrie Irving Holds The Key To Cleveland's Title Chances

Bovada.lv gives the Cavaliers +650 odds and the Warriors -1100 odds. Cleveland is a +900 underdog (Golden State is a -1500 favorite) at Sportsbook.ag, and the latest odds indicate that the series won’t return to Oracle Arena.

No final result has better odds than a sweep for the Warriors. Sportsbook.ag lists the chances of the series lasting just four games at +170, and a win for Golden State in five games has +175 betting odds. Warriors in six (+500) and Warriors in seven (+800) are considered to be the next most likely results. The Cavaliers are given +1200 odds to win in seven games, and Cleveland is a major longshot to win the next four contests and take the series in six games with +3500 odds.

Kevin Durant Stephen Curry
Kevin Durant Stephen Curry

Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry, pictured following their 132-113 win in Game 2 of the 2017 NBA Finals against the Cleveland Cavaliers at ORACLE Arena on June 4, 2017 in Oakland, California, make the Golden State Warriors heavy betting favorites before Game 3. Photo: Getty Images

Cleveland was in the exact same spot a year ago, getting blown out in Game 1 and Game 2 in Golden State, only to come back and win four of the next five games. The Cavs have lost by a combined 41 points this year, and they were defeated by 48 total points in 2016.

This year’s series, however, does have a different feel. Even though the Warriors set a record with 73 regular-season wins last season, they were nearly defeated by the Oklahoma City Thunder in the Western Conference Finals. With the addition of Kevin Durant, Golden State has looked invincible in the playoffs with 14 straight wins to start the postseason.

The Warriors have just one loss in their last 30 games, and they are favored in Game 3 at Quicken Loans Arena. The betting line is up to 3.5 points, via OddsShark, in favor of Golden State. Before the finals started, Cleveland was a two-point favorite at home in Game 3. Heading into Game 3 of the 2016 finals with a 2-0 series lead, the Warriors were one-point underdogs.

LeBron James has been terrific in defeat, averaging a triple-double on better than 55 percent shooting. Kevin Durant has been just as good, and he’s the early favorite to win the NBA Finals MVP award. Stephen Curry is putting up MVP-like numbers, as well, while Kyrie Irving has not been able to hold his own as of yet.

If Cleveland drops Game 3, they can say goodbye to any chance they had to successfully defend their title. The Cavs had the greatest comeback in NBA Finals history last year when they won the championship after trailing in the series 3-1.

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