Nate Silver & 538 are confident that the Warriors will beat the Cavaliers. Their official prediction has the Warriors at 90% to win the series. As such, they are risking 64% of their bankroll on the Warriors.
No, a win won’t get them back to parity, but it would trim the damage of constantly shorting the Cavs. Still, as confident as 538 is, that’s nothing compared to ESPN’s BPI:
|X Warriors 4-0||4450||4045||-4450|
They are risking 75.2% of their bankroll on the Warriors. They have the Warriors at 93.2% to win the series. That’s roughly 13.7-1. At the time when I recorded their wagers, they only had to lay 2.6-1. The current vig-free price is a hair under 2.6-1, so we can get a reasonably estimation of how far off market ESPN is.
Let’s run a thought experiment. I want you to imagine a world where you could bet into ESPN’s BPI. Yes, I know Ben “10,000” Alamar is risk averse, but that’s not relevant to the experiment. Let’s give ESPN a vig of 4%. In that case, you’d have to lay 19.8-1 on Golden State, and you’d get 10.4-1 on Cleveland. In that case, Pinnacle would make this bet:
Yes, that “To Win” column is accurate. That is the kind of thing we’d be seeing if Pinnacle and ESPN’s BPI were to play “The Green Knight” test against each other. In the long run, it would not be pretty for ESPN’s BPI.
Of course, there are those who believe in Cleveland:
Have fun and enjoy the games. This is a bit what it was like when the Lakers and Celtics battled (although the East was always reasonably tough).