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Tuesday, November 29th, 2011 at 9:00 am  |  69 responses

Vegas: Miami Heat Favorites to Win 2012 NBA Title


by Marcel Mutoni @marcel_mutoni

The Miami Heat may have fallen on their faces in last season’s NBA Finals, but to Vegas oddmakers, LeBron James and company still look pretty good.

The Heat are 2-to-1 favorites to win the 2012 NBA championship, with the LA Lakers, OKC Thunder, Dallas Mavericks, and Chicago Bulls rounding out the list of title contenders.

From the LA Times:

MGM Mirage’s race and sports director Jay Rood considers Miami a 2-to-1 favorite to win the title, followed by the Lakers (9-to-2) and the Chicago Bulls and Oklahoma City Thunder (5-to-1). Meanwhile, Jay Kornegay, director of the Las Vegas Hilton Race and Sports Book, has tabbed the Heat as 2-to-1 favorites, unless the Chicago Bulls (6-to-1) get past them. That puts the Lakers (7-to-1) in a third-place tie with the Dallas Mavericks and Oklahoma City Thunder.

The reasons appear fairly simple. “They’re aging and have miles on them,” Kornegay said. “They don’t have a true point guard. And the coaching is a question mark. The Lakers have potential to be this year’s Philadelphia Eagles more than anybody right now,” Rood said. “Two of their guys (Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher) are getting long in the tooth. Kobe has been injured more often than not. With a shorter season, you don’t know if it will help or hurt them. If a significant player gets injured, it’ll be more difficult to overcome in a shorter season. They also don’t have the luxury of taking six weeks off and get back in the thick of things.”

Keep in mind, of course, that when the Miami Heat Voltron’d with LeBron, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh last summer, Vegas tabbed them as the NBA title favorites then, too.

Who would you put your money on to walk away with the ‘chip this year?

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  • seun

    the miami heat because the way i see it lebron is pissed right now and probably worked harder this summer than he has done for some time so i expect lebron to play the best basketball of his carrer as he gins to enter the prime years of his carer. to me the only thing holding them back is a solid bench and a decent point guard, but i think mario chalmbers showed in the finals last year that he can be a decent point guard. i also feel like a healthy udonis haslem can be a sixth man of the year candidate and as long as mike miller and the rest of the bench can hit open shots then the heat will not only win the title but possibly breeze through the regular season with a dominant season.

  • robb

    If they get Nene, it’s very possible.

  • 12ising Phoenix

    Knicks – 2011-12 NBA Champs ^__^

  • truthteller

    lakers!

  • sss

    The Heat will win. LeBron always comes up in the clutch and has a rich history of Playoff excellence.

  • Yesse

    If they can play the 4th quarter, it’s very possible.

  • bull22

    @seun, lebron was suppose be ticked off last year and look at what happened… the fun was them losing last year in the finals but now they are just another team hoping to win a title.. @12ising, you can forget about the knicks winning a title this year and same for @truthteller and the lakers.
    GUARANTEED….

  • IAMORANGE4EVER

    Translation: The Heat are the betting favorite amongst the herd. The herd will be wrong, and Vegas will cash in. BOOK IT!

  • Tyree

    @bull22 it won’t be them bulls either especially with boozer’s light switch moments……….on and off on and off

  • http://staticseth.blogspot.com/ Seth

    Makes sense. They played very well towards the end of last season, and if they can land someone like Tyson Chandler that would make them favorites for sure. This upcoming free agency should be interesting.

  • http://www.optimabbc.be Max

    Well the Heat will probably be the favourite for the next 4 years or even longer..

  • IAMORANGE4EVER

    Wade turning 30 in 7 weeks from today. Just sayin’.

  • robb

    @Yesse true

  • http://redoftoothandclaw.ca/ niQ

    No surprise here. Cosign Max.

  • LA Huey

    @bull22, I thought the fun was when your guys beat them in the Eastern Conference Fin – er, nevermind.

  • Cheshire

    we need D12 in LA but even as a diehard Lakers fan I don’t know how that’s gonna work and if it does, then we’ll have to give up a LOT

  • flash

    Translation: The Heat are the betting favorite amongst the herd. The herd will be wrong, and Vegas will cash in. BOOK IT! – i agree with IAMORANGE4EVER. the NBA is FIXED! youd know that if you’re a gambling man

  • http://www.slamonline.com Jahmai

    We all saw how this worked out last year. Close.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    What kind of thought process is someone who claims the NBA is fixed, the year after the Mavericks win the title, going through? Not a very smart one.

  • Hanoon

    what about the raptors :( ?

  • http://www.offthebackboard.wordpress.com OTB

    I’ve been hearing since 2008 that a team with Lebron leading it is going to win a title, pardon me if I won’t be surprised if it doesn’t happen.

  • http://www.chicagonow.com/blogs/chicago-bulls-talk/2011 Diesel

    I don’t know if the Heat will or won’t, but I can definitely say its time to drop that “Lebron’s angry now” crap. I think he’s proved time and time again that he rarely “plays angry”. At least not for any consistent period of time.

  • ab40

    yeah flash that’s why you are a milionair right now after putting a couple of g’s on the mavs last year. HA. I don’t know who’s gonna get it. I wonder who gets who and who goes where during the super frantic free agency period coming up in a few weeks. LeBron is a softy. Kind of like David Robinson. These guys could do everything had some solid teams around them but couldn’t do it by themselves.

  • shutupallenp

    Why is it such a shock the Mavs won last year? they had a better overall team and head and shoulders better coach. If Pat Riley steps down to coach there is no reason the Heat cant win, i expect them to be in the finals, against who I dont know, i just have a feeling the Lakers wont be there and the bulls wont make the eastern conference finals.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ys6VpgI9BHA datkid

    there is no reason the heat can’t be expected to win a championship next year.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Very few people had the Mavs beating the Lakers last year, let alone sweeping them. that’s why it’s shocking.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    It’s not a shock that the Mavs won. But it sure wasn’t something that illicit’s a claim that the L is fixed. lol

  • Maniac

    Yeah those are the five best teams in the league. Odds look sort of right. I’m expecting a Lakers-Heat finals

  • http://myspace.com/gametimeweezy Gametimeweezy

    The way the Mavs were shooting the ball in the playoffs how was that shocking? Unless you mean in the preseason, yea I hear that. Heat vs OKC in the finals.

  • shutupallenp

    I was talking about in the finals and the lakers got exposed, they are overhyped year in and year out, JJ barera is a killer

  • Heals

    Chalk another one up for The House…

  • http://nba.com GP23

    It will be either Heat and OKC finals, or a Heat and Lakers finals.

  • http://myspace.com/gametimeweezy Gametimeweezy

    I’d actually like to see the Grizz continue their winning ways… I’m loving they got Selby.

  • shutupallenp

    Lets not forget whos coaching the Lakers now…..no shot in hell they make it to the finals

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    Orlando-Memphis Finals. Think David Stern would have a heart attack?

  • Maniac

    LA or OKC out the West and MIA or CHI out the East

  • bull22

    @lahuey, yeah miami beat my team but to have ultimate bragging rights you
    got to finish the deal.. so in the end all that mattered was the heat LOST and all their FANS and BANDWAGON LOVERS ate shhhhhhhhhh!!!! hahaahhahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahhahahahha

  • KHALID SALAAM

    “The Lakers have potential to be this year’s Philadelphia Eagles more than anybody right now”—-what does that even mean? What a piss-poor comparison.

  • BillyJ

    @Khalid… if you kept up with football you’d know that prior to the season starting, a lot of people saw them as one of the top contenders… and now I think they’ve won 3 or 4 games.

    It’s a good comparison.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Man, given what the Lakers were bringing to the table in the front court, plus Kobe, I thought they would win.
    I had no idea the Mavs would shoot like that and would be able to withstand the Lakers inside particularly without Caron Butler.
    Maybe I was the only one, but I was shocked.

  • http://www.facebook.com/gametimeweezy Gametimeweezy

    Before that series I would have picked the Lakers too, I thought you meant in the preseason their was no way I’d pick the Mavs either. I guess it wasn’t surprising given the way Nowitzki, Jason Terry, Stojakovic, and Jason Kidd (he sure has transformed into a knockdown 3 point ace) all can light it up but they just looked unbeatable.

  • http://www.twitter.com/nflem41 Nicolas Fleming

    It’s a terrible comparison. The Eagles were scrambled to be put together with a lot of big names. The Lakers went to the NBA Finals 3 of the last 4 years and won twice. How are they like the Eagles again?

  • http://SLAMONLINE.COM LakeShow

    ^Naw I was shocked. Heck, I thought they still were going to win it when they were down 3-0. Mavs were friggin lights out. Lakers didn’t play great D, but I don’t think it would have mattered much.

    I have Lakers/Heat Finals. Been wanting to see LbJ in the finals against my guys for a minute now.

  • http://SLAMONLINE.COM LakeShow

    I gotta stop with the up arrows thing(^). I’m always shafted by the comments section and then look like i’m speaking with someone else about nothing that makes any sense.

  • shutupallenp

    i was pleasantly surprised, i thought it was gonna be a tough series saw it goin 6-7. but after the first game seeing how Tyson Chandler was getting the better of Bynum/Gasol and how jj was goin off it didnt shock me, i always thought the finals was theirs to lose, even when Miami would go on runs the Mavs stuck around and made it hard for them to score, i was praying that Miami would hold on, not a bandwagoner but I like to follow newly assembled teams, rooted for the celtics against the lakers, just want to see Lebron win one so the hate can die down a bit. Just dont be shocked if the Spurs make it to the finals this year, this extra rest is gonna really help duncan lets just hope parker and ginobili stay healthy

  • http://www.slamonline.com Slick Ric

    The Bulls wiill be in the finals this year, D.Rose is finna kill lebron and them boys.

  • http://fivemag.de Speedy

    Is this the real Khalid Salaam?

  • http://www.optimabbc.be Max

    Man I even had Portland beating the Mavs in 6 or 7.

  • @Deknowz

    I second Knicks – 2011-12 NBA Champs ^__^ !!!!!! lol

  • giogolo

    I would bet against anyone in here that it would be the Heat against any top 3 teams that finish in the west reg. season. Nba just lost too much money…

  • bike

    The X factor for MIA will be Wade. D-Wade turns 30 this year and when he goes down, he goes down hard and for quite some time. MIA is and should be the favorite but everything has to be in place for the main three. And they really could stand to shop around for a good point guard and some shooters with some size.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Mavs in football comparison are the Saints, they had one great year and play well every year to stay a contender. Mavs will lose players and hang around the pack, but lose games they should win like the saints, then show up against good teams and spank them here and there. Mavs had one great year with JJ and Jet led team, with Dirk showing up. Lakers are winning and getting Howard in an midseason trade, once the Magic start to lose and Howard states he wants to be a Laker to ride with Kobe and become a better Superman sidekick than Shaq. BOOK IT!!

  • Dingo Rob

    Isn’t this a bit early, I will be waiting for trade period is finishing, if LA and Bulls don’t make the right moves then I see them doing no more than last season. OKC and MIami all the way

  • shutupallenp

    dwight will never be better than shaq

  • http://slamonline.com IvanE.CHI

    Chicago will win for sure. Miami no!

  • Wray

    As long as LeBron James and Dwayne Wade are on a team together, that team is going to be the favorite to get the crown. I can only hope they whiff it for a second straight year so we can start moving away from this.

  • BBaller

    There is going to be drastic changes to a lot of team’s rosters so it’s too early to make these predictions. CP3 and Dwight could shake the whole thing pending where and if they move.

  • Johhny Blaze

    Dwight to L.A.
    Dalembert to Miami.
    A.I. back in the league (Boston)
    Knicks have 66 games to sort it out.
    Shaq & Barkley mouthing off before, during & after games.
    Another awesome season to look forward to…

  • http://www.fiba.com Darksaber

    Yes, i see and enjoy the shellshocked reaction of the commenters around here regarding the Mavs sweeping LA still exists months later. (thank you, Mrs Bryant and Pau’s ex, much obliged)
    Luving this.
    Go MAVS!

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ys6VpgI9BHA datkid

    nene should come to miami… like immediately lol

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ys6VpgI9BHA datkid

    man darksaber if pau had been the same pau he was in 2010 the mavs would’ve gotten stomped out.

  • http://www.fiba.com Darksaber

    Why yes, of course.
    And if i had gills, i would breathe underwater.
    But i don’t, and i can’t and Pau wasn’t.
    C’est la vie.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    Do you think Shaq and Barkley still reminisce about their brawl?

  • http://www.fiba.com Darksaber

    Hope Shaq uses his talkshow voice on tnt instead of his regular speaking voice. That guy is a mumble machine.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ys6VpgI9BHA datkid

    lmaooo whatever dark. the heat are coming for you next time!

  • http://nbasobrietystrike.blogspot.com/ CoolWhip

    @Teddy, I just saw them on Open Court and they were talking about the brawl. They were pretty funny about it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    I think if the Bulls are able to find a guy at the 2 that can create his own scoring oppurtunites on a consistent basis(like a Jamal Crawford) they’d end up taking at least taking the Heat to 7, maybe winning(Depends on the Heat’s D and whether or not Boozer will show up)
    When it comes to LA….ehh everything is just one HUGE question mark to me regarding them. It’s been like that all year…

  • ron G

    heat vs okc nba finals no doubt

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