The Toronto Raptors are, officially, for real. General manager Masai Ujiri has put them in a position to be a legitimate Eastern Conference threat—one of two teams the Cleveland Cavaliers must be afraid of. They have never been a more steady betting play. Please don't let the previous two seasons of seesawing basketball fool you. This version of the Raptors is different. The offense, while heavily tied to Kyle Lowry, DeMar DeRozan and Cory Joseph isolations, remains statistically dangerous. [+]

And this season, even with DeMarre Carroll injured, the Raptors have constructed a top-10 defense.


Toronto Raptors Next Regular Season Game


Want to see which team the Raptors play next? Look no further. These individual game lines will help give you an idea of what you must figure out before placing your bet. [+]

Why are the Raptors favored by so much? Why are they the underdog? How have they performed at home? How about on the road? Is their opponent deploying an above average offense and defense, one or the other or are they inferior on both sides. 

Let those questions shape your research. And then let that research shape your bets.


Wednesday, Jan 20 19:30 EST
Miami Heat
Toronto Raptors


Below you'll be able to see the Raptors' schedule. Looking at upcoming opponents won't allow you to create exact bets, but it does let you single out games you know you'll want to bet on. [+]

An understated part of planning ahead is also the ability to detect rough patches in the schedule. If you see that the Raptors are playing a bunch of really, really good teams around the same time, that might be a stretch you avoid entirely. 

It's not a sexy concept, as you're essentially committing to remaining idle or turning your attentions to other teams. But, sometimes, the bets you don't make end up being among your most profitable decisions.


Results / FixturesToronto Raptors

What Are The Current Toronto Raptors Standings


Smart bettors won't ever lose sight of the Raptors' place in the standings. In terms of the Eastern Conference specifically, you're not actually looking at where the Raptors are situated. [+]

You know they'll be in second place—or, sometimes, first place—these days. Figuring out they're most likely playoff opponents is the smarter way to approach these standings. Try deciding which teams are most likely to finish in seventh place, then you'll have a better hold on whether or not you should be investing in Raptors futures plays.

The easier the potential playoff path, the more likely the Raptors are to reach the Eastern Conference Finals; the more likely the Raptors are to reach the Eastern Conference Finals, the more likely they are to reach the NBA Finals; the more likley they are to reach the NBA Finals, the more sensible investing in championship and conference futures becomes.


StandingsToronto Raptors

Trust in the Raptors Future

If there was ever a time to embrace the Raptors' future it's now. They are clearly threats to reach the Eastern Conference Finals and, by extension, the NBA Finals. The odds against them will still be huge, since the Cavaliers are considered patented Eastern Conference favorites, but Toronto is closer to Cleveland than most realize. And that ignorance is actually good for bettors, as they can lock in with long shot odds that don't actually do the Raptors justice.

Things don't change when looking ahead. The Raptors figure to be threats in the East for years. They do have a lot riding on the offseason, as DeRozan could leave in free agency.

But there's no way Ujiri lets him walk in free agency unless he has an alternative plan in place. And if he has an alternative plan in place, you can bet on him having found a way to upgrade the roster without DeRozan.

To that point, the Raptors are a destination of choice, further driving up their futures appeal. Free agents want to play for them, because of how good they have become. They may not be the team that poaches Kevin Durant away from the Oklahoma City Thunder, but they will certainly be in play for a guy like Nicolas Batum.

Furthermore, the Raptors have a ton of moveable assets, most notably the contracts of Terrence Ross and Jonas Valanciunas, as well as draft picks, that they can deal in exchange for another star. Any disgruntled superstar that hits the chopping block could, realistically, end up in Toronto.

Use this knowledge to your advantage when placing bets. Putting money in the Raptors offseason championship odds is a stretch, but they're solid plays when it comes to win totals and winning the Eastern Conference.

Toronto Raptors Online Betting Tips

Together, Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan make up the best backcourt in the Eastern Conference. That's an important distinction, one many would have previously given to the Washington Wizards' Bradley Beal and John Wall. But the Raptors have seized that torch, and they won't be giving it back unless DeRozan leaves in free agency.

Because DeRozan and Lowry are steamrolling just about every backcourt they face, you'll want to tailor your bets based on these matchups. If they're playing a team that has only one strong backcourt player, the Raptors become an incredibly attractive play. If they're playing one of the worst backcourts in the league, don't overthink the situation. Gravitate toward the Raptors' moneyline and spread numbers.

One caveat: The Raptors don't move the ball a lot. Again, they prefer to let DeRozan and Lowry do their respective things with the ball. This is a solid game plan for the most part, but when they're going up against terrific defenses, be wary of betting on spreads. Moneylines or under bets on over/under plays are the more sound forms of action.