Reports of Nets’ star point guard Kyrie Irving demanding a trade sent oddsmakers scrambling to adjust the odds on the Eastern Conference power Friday afternoon.
Brooklyn’s odds to win the title have plummeted at SI Sportsbook to +1200 after beginning the week at +550, tied for the second-best odds in the NBA.
The Nets are now tied with the Clippers for the eighth-best odds and the fourth-best in the conference behind the Celtics, Bucks and 76ers.
Irving, who ranks seventh in the NBA in scoring averaging with 27.1 points per game, has spent the last four seasons with Brooklyn after two seasons with the Celtics and six with the Cavaliers.
As Sports Illustrated’s Rohan Nadkarni highlighted earlier Friday, Irving’s tumultuous time in Brooklyn needs to come to an end.
“Fortunately, this season is still salvageable for Brooklyn. Irving unequivocally needs to be moved, and with Durant playing at an MVP level, this team could still be a contender … Irving has had an up-and-mostly-down tenure with Brooklyn, starting with an injury-riddled first season, part-time status last year due to his anti-vaccination beliefs, and then a suspension earlier this season after sharing a link to an antisemitic film on Twitter.” – Rohan Nadkarni.
The Nets have burned bettors with their 24-25-2 against the spread (ATS) mark this season and they will be even harder to trust if Irving is held out of the lineup moving forward. Brooklyn returns to action Saturday to host the surging Wizards, who are 7-3 both straight-up (SU) and ATS over their last 10 games.
The Nets rank fourth third in the Eastern Conference with a record of 31-20 but have struggled of late, winning just four of their last 10 games.
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