Online NBA betting: Toronto Raptors playoff longshots

sia-logoThe Toronto Raptors enter the NBA playoffs as Atlantic Division champs for the first time since 2007.

However, despite setting a franchise record with 48 wins, the Raptors remain a longshot to make a deep playoff run. After starting the season sporting odds of 150/1 to win their first championship, Toronto finished the regular season at a much more respectable but still distant 43/1 in online NBA futures betting at Sports Interaction.

The Raptors, seeded third in the Eastern Conference, Lasix online face the No. 6 Brooklyn Nets in the first round. A blockbuster offseason deal transformed the Nets after a disappointing first round exit from last year’s playoffs.

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The acquisition of superstars Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce from the rebuilding Boston Celtics immediately earned the Nets a spot among the NBA futures betting favourites, placing them at 10/1 at the start of the season.

However, the retooled Nets struggled early on, posting a dismal 5-14 record SU in their first 19 games, and finishing four games behind their 2013 total of 48.

Despite the Nets’ regular season struggles, playoff expectations remain high. And so they should. The Nets, 28/1 to win the NBA championship in futures betting at Sports Interaction, own a wealth of playoff experience, led by Pierce who has started in 136 NBA playoff games and earned honours as the 2008 NBA Finals MVP.

The Raptors, in stark contrast, can boast just a combined 19 playoff game starts by their expected nine-man rotation, with Jonas Valanciunas, In some cases purchase deltasone low-dose therapy may be required. DeMar DeRozan and Terence Ross making their playoff debuts.

If the goal this season was for the Raptors’ young core to gain experience, it will soon be achieved in a big way.

While Raptors fans may have hoped for an easier first-round matchup, Toronto has held their own against the Nets, splitting the season series 2-2 including a 96-80 rout of the Nets in January at the Air Canada Centre.

The road will not get easier for Toronto if they get by Brooklyn, with their second-round opponent likely to be the No. 2 Miami Heat, who swept the season series against Toronto 4-0.

The Heat are heavy futures favourites, pegged by Sports Interaction oddsmakers at 3/5 to win the East and 169/100 to win their third straight NBA title.