Handicapping The NBA Finals: Where Do the Celtics and Lakers Have an Edge?

2010 NBA Finals Lakers vs Celtics

The NBA Finals are here, and will renew an old rivalry as the Boston Celtics take on the Los Angeles Lakers. It's a rematch of the 2008 finals, where the Celtics defeated the Lakers on their way to winning the crown. This year, the teams are different. Both squads are ready to make this one of the best finals ever.

Most offshore sportsbooks have the Lakers opening as a -140 to -190 favorite to win the championship. If interested in betting on the Celtics to win the series, the best price I found is at Diamond Sportsbook (Celtics +170) . And, if interested on betting on the Lakers, the smallest line I have found is at Brobury Sports (Lakers -180).

Breakdown preview and pick: 2010 NBA Finals

Battle of the Bigs: Phil Jackson knows exactly what kind of series it will be with the Celtics. “It will be a match-up of bigs. They’re physical,” Jackson said.

“I guess they’ve got that part of their game back.” That is an understatement. 

In 2008, the Celtics made Pau Gasol look soft, something he is still dealing with. 

“It was painful,” said Gasol. This year, there could be more of the same.

The Celtics had plenty of bodies to frustrate Dwight Howard with hard and physical play, and will do the same to the Lakers. Andrew Bynum has played hurt through most of the playoffs. The Lakers will need him to help out down low.

Artest could be the difference: Many could argue that Ron Artest made the difference in the series against Phoenix. He hit the game winning shot in Game 5 and put in plenty of points in Game 6. Now he has the task of guarding Paul Pierce. Paul Pierce is arguably the Celtics best scorer and was the difference when two teams met in 2008. If Artest can contain him for most of the series, the Lakers can win.

Revenge f...

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