The 2021 NBA All-Star Game is set for Sunday in Atlanta between Team LeBron and Team Durant. The two superstars drafted their teams on Thursday night on TNT and it was pretty clear that one side got the advantage early in the draft. Kevin Durant is not expected to play in the game but was allowed to draft the team anyway. So now that we have actual teams for the game, DraftKings Sportsbook has opening odds for the contest. Let’s take a look and give some initial thoughts.
Team LeBron (-4) vs. Team Durant
So first off, if you want to take a deeper look at the rosters, you can find both of them and the draft results here. It’s not surprise the team with LeBron, Steph Curry, Luka Doncic and Giannis Antetokounmpo has the early edge. The thing is the format really plays a big factor here. It’s also an All-Star Game, so on paper one team can be viewed as better. Really, both steams are absolutely stacked. Even Team Durant has Kyrie, James Harden, Kawhi Leonard, Joel Embiid and Zion Williamson. So my early lean is taking the points and Team Durant knowing the game will likely be tight for three quarters before the format switches.
The total from last year in the first time in the new format was 312. So this number is basically based off of that line. In 2020, we saw Team LeBron rally in the final quarter after being down 9 heading into the fourth, where you play to 24 essentially. I think the shooting is slightly better than last season for both teams. Bradley Beal and Zach LaVine are newcomers. I guess the big thing to consider is the time players get to rest after the Skills Challenge and 3-Point Contest. That’s a lot of energy exerted before the game is even played and it’s right before. So I could see the total going under with that in mind.
Team LeBron (-175) vs. Team Durant (+145)
This line seems arbitrary really. It’s anyone’s game. Both sides have great players and we don’t even know who is actually motivated to win because it’s an exhibition game. In 2020, it meant a bit more with the passing of Kobe Bryant and all the tributes. This year, it’s sort of a clean slate. So in any case, I’ll take Team Durant at these odds knowing that it should basically be a pick ‘em.
If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, crisis counseling and referral services can be accessed by calling 1-800-GAMBLER (1-800-426-2537) (IL).Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER (NJ/WV/PA/MI), 1-800-9-WITH-IT (IN), 1-800-522-4700 (NH/CO), 1-800-BETS OFF (IA), 1-888-532-3500 (VA) or call/text TN REDLINE 1-800-889-9789 (TN).21+ (18+ NH). CO/IL/IN/IA/NH/NJ/PA/TN/VA/WV/MI only. Eligibility restrictions apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for full terms and conditions.