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Mark Strotman for Bookies.com

By Mark Strotman | | 12 mins

Toronto Raptors' NBA Title Odds Keep Shrinking; Should You Bet Them?

Toronto Raptors' NBA Title Odds Keep Shrinking; Should You Bet Them?

It’s time to start talking about the Toronto Raptors. While a number of teams in the East have staked their claim as the conference’s best at different points in the season, it’s impossible not to think that these Raptors are getting scorching hot at the right time.

The end result of this latest hot stretch? The Raptors have seen their NBA title odds shrink to +11000, and their NBA futures odds to win the Eastern Conference to +4500. Those odds still make them a considerable long shot, but there may be value based on what they’ve done over the last few weeks—and the fact that they’ve moved into the top-6 in the East and out of the Play-In Tournament.

But it goes deeper than that. With sports betting in Ontario now live in the province, here’s why we like the Raptors as long shots on betting sites in the East as we come down the home stretch of the NBA’s regular season.

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Three Reasons We Like The Raptors

Raptors solid on both ends

The Raptors fell to 23-23 on Jan. 26 in a loss to the Bulls. But beginning with a thrilling triple-overtime win over the Heat on Jan. 29, Toronto ranks 6th in the NBA in net rating, including fourth in defensive efficiency—only the Celtics, Grizzlies and Suns are better. Though their offense is just 16th in that span, it’s showing signs of life during the recent hot stretch.

We also have confidence that the offense will turn around. They’ve put together elite stretches, and they’ve got four players averaging 17.3 or more points (OG Anunoby, Gary Trent, Fred VanVleet, Pascal Siakam), the only team in the league with that distinction. If the offense can find its magic from early February — getting Anunoby back and VanVleet fully healthy will help — the defense is good enough to keep them competitive against anyone.

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Raptors highly competitive against league’s best

Speaking of being competitive against anyone, that’s exactly what the Raptors have been this season. As of this writing, they’re 24-22 against teams with .500 or better records. That may not seem great, but it’s actually fourth best in the East, ahead of both the Bucks and Bulls.

It gets even better when looking at the East, where they’re 9-8 against the top five teams in the conference:

OpponentRaptors' Record
Miami Heat2-2
Mikwaukee Bucks3-0
Philadelphia 76ers1-1
Chicago Bulls1-3
Boston Celtics2-2

This team is battle-tested against the league’s best, and let’s not forget that core pieces in VanVleet, Siakam, and Anunoby all have significant postseason experience — and championship rings. That goes for Nick Nurse, too, who is both an NBA Coach of the Year and champion. When the postseason rolls around, that matters.

Raptors a great bet against the spread

Even if you’re not buying the Raptors to make it through the gauntlet of the East or to repeat Kawhi Leonard’s historic 2019 run, there’s money to be made on the Raptors on betting apps. They’re 44-33-1 ATS this season, the fourth-best record in the NBA, including a stellar 25-14-1 ATS on the road.

NBA betting oddsmakers may take their hot stretch into account when building lines, but we feel like there’s going to be value on the Raptors each night, especially as their health improves. As the number of options for Canadian sports betting fans continues to increase - beginning with April's launch in Ontario - be sure to keep the Raptors in mind when making your wagers.

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About the Author

Mark Strotman for Bookies.com
Mark Strotman
Mark is a veteran sports betting journalist who has covered the Bulls and the NBA since 2012. His work has appeared on ESPN.com, FoxSports.com, The Chicago Tribune and Yahoo Sports. He regularly provides NBA betting picks, as well as in-depth sportsbook reviews and the latest promo codes for all the major sports gambling operators, including Caesars Sportsbook, BetMGM, DraftKings, FanDuel and more.