Lakers NBA Championship odds (LA a distant long shot ahead of matchup with Nuggets)

Looking at the Los Angeles Lakers’ odds to win the NBA Finals. 
Apr 16, 2024; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) looks on against the Pelicans.
Apr 16, 2024; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) looks on against the Pelicans. / Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers are in the playoff field after getting just enough from their stars in the play-in tournament. The tandem of LeBron James and Anthony Davis combined for 43 points, 24 rebounds and 9 assists while D’Angelo Russell’s five 3-pointers helped the Lakers beat the New Orleans Pelicans on the road, 110-106. 

The Lakers have now secured the No. 7 seed in the Western Conference Playoffs but face an uphill climb to make another deep playoff run as they’ll run into the No. 2 Denver Nuggets in the first round. 

That tough first-round draw has made the Lakers a sizable longshot to do any damage in the Western Conference bracket. 

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Lakers NBA Championship odds

According to FanDuel Sportsbook, the Lakers are in the middle of the pack at 10th in the NBA Finals futures board at +2900 ($100 bet wins $2,900) to win it all. Those odds carry an implied probability of just 3.33% that Los Angeles could win what would be an NBA-record 18th championship and second in five seasons. 

It doesn’t help the Lakers that they are facing the reigning-champion Nuggets, who are the odds-on favorite (+135) to reach the NBA Finals for the second consecutive season. Of the teams with a playoff spot, the Lakers have the lowest odds to win the Western Conference title at +1400. Only the two play-in tournament teams (New Orleans and Sacramento) have longer odds. 

Lakers a massive underdog against Denver

Los Angeles couldn’t ask for a worse first-round matchup than Denver. The Lakers have lost eight consecutive games to the Nuggets dating back to January of last season. That span includes Denver’s sweep over Los Angeles in last year’s Western Conference Finals.

This season, Denver swept three meetings over Los Angeles with two games decided by double figures. The Lakers are a +270 ($100 bet wins $270) underdog to upset the Nuggets. Those odds equal an implied probability of just 27.03% that Los Angeles will advance to the second round.

Per FanDuel, the Lakers are a 7-point underdog in Game 1 of the series on Saturday at Ball Arena. Los Angeles went just 19-22 ATS on the road during the regular season but were 14-11 ATS as a road underdog. Denver had the second-best straight up record at home during the regular season (33-8), going 21-19-1 ATS in those contests. 

Game odds update periodically and are subject to change.