The acquisition of Steve Nash by the Los Angeles Lakers made a huge impact on the team, player and the league with many people thinking differently about the Lakers’ potential moving forward. Not only was Kobe Bryant arguably the happiest man in Southern California after the trade went down with the possibility of winning sixth NBA title greatly improving playing alongside Nash, but the sportsbooks in Las Vegas quickly changed their stance on the Lakers in terms of winning a championship in 2013.
According to Ben Bolch of the L.A. Times, the Lakers’ odds of winning a title next season have greatly improved in Sin City:
“RJ Bell of Pregame.com changed the Lakers’ championship odds from 12-1 pre-Nash to 8-1 with Nash agreeing to a three-year, $27-million deal.”
Even though the odds are much improved for the Lakers with Nash, three teams remain ahead of Los Angeles with the Miami Heat (2-1) leading the way ahead of the Oklahoma City Thunder (3-1) and Chicago Bulls (3-1).
It is interesting to see the Bulls with favorable odds considering Derrick Rose’s injury status and the fact the team hasn’t made many considerable moves via trade or free agency. The Heat and Thunder being heavily favored was a forgone conclusion with both teams able to keep the same rosters intact.
The real question now is whether or not the Lakers’ championship odds will improve even more with the potential acquisition of Dwight Howard via trade from the Orlando Magic.
It would be safe to say that they’d be the favorite to come out of the Western Conference with a healthy Howard in the fold, but the Heat may continue to be the favorite to win the title in the 2012-13 NBA season. Currently, the Lakers have improved from 11-2 to 7-2 odds to win the West.