Last week, someone other than the Phoenix Suns got a turn as NBA championship favorites over at BetMGM.
The Golden State Warriors took the top spot in the odds. The Warriors looked great in the first round as the Suns, dealing with a Devin Booker injury, had a tougher-than-expected series against the New Orleans Pelicans.
After two games of the Western Conference semifinals, the Suns are back on top.
Phoenix is the favorite to win it all again after easily dispatching the Dallas Mavericks in Game 2 of the series on Wednesday. They are down to +200 odds at BetMGM. Last week, their odds rose to +500.
It feels like the Suns might not give up that favorite position again.
Suns favored again to win it all
The Suns were the best team over the course of the regular season and the only real candidate to be favored to win a title as the playoffs started. They're a great overall team that had plenty of motivation after losing a 2-0 lead in the NBA Finals last year.
One big reason the Suns are +200 favorites to win it all, easily outdistancing the Warriors (+340), Boston Celtics (+450) and Miami Heat (+450) is they're up 2-0 in the series against the Mavericks. The Warriors had two tough battles in Memphis to start their series with the Grizzlies and are tied 1-1. It's hard to take two relatively equal teams and have shorter odds for the team that is up 1-1 in the series rather than the team that's ahead 2-0.
Still, it's not just because the Suns are one game closer to a title than the Warriors. They've looked, again, like the best team in the NBA.
Suns have rebounded vs. Mavs
The Mavericks were very good after the Kristaps Porzingis trade. They were very good to bettors and got by the Utah Jazz in the first round despite Luka Doncic missing the start of the series. The Mavs were blown out in each of the first two games against the Suns, but it seems like more of a reflection on Phoenix than any deficiencies with the Mavericks.
Game 1 was a 121-114 Suns win that never felt that close, and Game 2 was 129-109. The Suns covered the spread in both games, and Game 2's cover was never in doubt. They're putting on an offensive show. They're a good defensive team too.
If the Warriors get past the Grizzlies — that's no lock with Ja Morant playing as well as he is — it would set up an epic Western Conference finals. If the Suns get back to the NBA Finals, they'd have a tough matchup against the Heat, Celtics or Milwaukee Bucks (sorry Philadelphia 76ers fans, we'll put you back on the radar once your team takes a game off Miami this round).
The Suns aren't guaranteed a title by any means, but they should be the favorite to win it. They were most of the season. There was some doubts during the first round. The first two games of the series against the Mavericks should erase any questions about the Suns. They're back in their rightful spot as the most likely team to win a championship.
If you wanted to get value betting on the Suns to win it all, your window is probably closed.