Did a few connected gamblers know that Kevin Durant was picking the Warriors, or did they get lucky making educated guesses that he was leaving the Thunder?
It’s a legitimate question to ask when you read this story about how some guy plunked down $20k on the Warriors to win the 2017 NBA Championship on July 3, the day before Kevin Durant shocked the basketball world and left the Thunder.
The important nugget to pull: After the wager was placed at 3:2 odds, the Westgate SuperBook “treated the bet as an ‘educated guess wager’ and adjusted Golden State’s odds accordingly.”
Many directions to take this:
1) It’s an obvious bet. The Warriors won the title in 2015, then won 73 games in 2016 and had a 3-1 lead in the Finals. They were going to be the favorites going into next season no matter what.
2) This gambler had some people on the inside of some of those meetings in the Hamptons.
3) Come on, of course they’d adjust the odds to protect liability. But if the bet was made by some rich guy from Minnesota, does the SuperBook adjust the odds? Because the SuperBook did adjust the odds after the bet was placed. The story doesn’t say what the odds were adjusted to, but a week later they’re at 2:3.
The MGM took a “half dozen four figure” bets on the Warriors to win it all before Durant’s decision, according to ESPN. Again – educated guesses, or inside info?
A week after Durant’s decision, the Warriors remain overwhelmingly the favorites to win the title at 2:3. The Cavs are at 5:2, followed by the Spurs at 8:1. The Thunder, who may not have Russell Westbrook on the roster by opening night, are 30:1 at the SuperBook and 20:1 at MGM. [via ESPN Chalk]