- The Toronto Raptors have emerged as a serious player in the Kevin Durant sweeptsakes.
- Toronto has gone from not being in the KD betting boards to the second favorite at +200 odds.
- The Raptors’ title odds have also improved to as short as +2000 via the BetOnline App.
A new favorite has emerged in the Kevin Durant betting market.
The Phoenix Suns are still the -125 betting favorites to land Kevin Durant but out of nowhere, the Toronto Raptors have shot up to second favorites at +200. Meanwhile, the Miami Heat have dropped to the third spot with their +750 odds while the defending NBA champions Golden State Warriors and Los Angeles Lakers complete the Top 5 odds at online sportsbook BetOnline at +1000 and +1600, respectively.
Toronto was not on any oddsmakers’ board last June 24th when it was first rumored that KD could be on the move this offseason. The Raptors appeared at +900 odds on the 4th of July but have now suddenly emerged as a strong contender to land KD at +200.
Vegas Has Raptors Firmly Involved in KD Sweepstakes
Vegas has the Raptors firmly involved in the Kevin Durant sweepstakes 👀https://t.co/6G8EMsQMJ0
— Yahoo Sports Canada (@YahooCASports) July 4, 2022
Durant has been busy moving teams that most of us have overlooked how he has been saying nice things about the Raptors franchise over the years. Way back in 2013, Durant once said that the Raptors were his favorite team as a kid growing up. When the Raptors won the title in 2019, he expressed his admiration for Fred VanVleet by calling him a “dog”. He also talked about Scottie Barnes and how Barnes “plays the right way”. KD also recently told David Letterman that Toronto is one of his favorite places to play at.
Media practitioners are already drumming up KD to Toronto talks. The Athletic’s John Hollinger says that the Raptors are the “most realistic” non-Phoenix destination for Durant. ESPN’s Bobby Marks also said that Toronto is a “leader of the clubhouse for KD”:
“For me, it’s all about Toronto.” pic.twitter.com/RMfWqPOprL
— Adam Laskaris (@adam_la2karis) July 5, 2022
Then there is the one and only Adrian Wojnarowski who said last weekend that the Raptors are “lurking” in the Kein Durant Sweepstakes. According to Woj, Toronto is a team that has all kinds of pieces and draft picks to make a deal for Durant. Tim Bontemps also followed up Woj’s statement by saying that the Raptors think that they are “in the game for KD”. With all these “reliable” chatter, Vegas has the Raptors firmly in the KD sweepstakes.
Raptors Title Odds Also Shorten
Everyone knows about the action the Lakers have gotten to win 2023 NBA title, but how about… the Raptors?
Since Thursday, only the Lakers (27%) & Suns (13%) have more handle than Raptors (11%) at @CaesarsSports.
Toronto’s title odds have gone from 60/1 to 25/1 in that span.
— Max Meyer (@TheMaxMeyer) July 5, 2022
Since Thursday ( until Monday ) when the Raptors entered the KD conversation, Toronto has been the third-most-popular bet in the 2023 NBA championship market. Of course, the Lakers have gotten the attention as they are linked to another Nets player in Kyrie Irving and Phoenix has moved to the top of the odds board as the Durant favorites. But after L.A’s 27% and Phoenix’s 13% betting handles, it’s the Raptors who are a surprise third at 11% of the total money,
Toronto’s title odds have also shortened. The Raptors opened at 60/1 but are now listed at +3000 via the FD Sportsbook, +2800 via PointsBet USA, and +2500 via the DK Sportsbook, Caesars Sportsbook, Bet365 USA, FOXbet, and Unibet. The Raptors’ shortest title odds are via BetOnline where they are listed at +2000 odds.
On Tuesday afternoon, the Nets saw their title odds improve to +3000 from +5000 after the team is reportedly prepared to have KD and even Kyrie on their opening day lineup unless their demands are met. Brooklyn is reportedly asking one superstar plus multiple first round picks for KD. That is a tough ask for Durant’s suitors. However, looking at the Raptors, they look like a team that can strike that kind of deal without much difficulty.