Betting on LeBron James to make the postseason has been a wise (and profitable) move historically. Since missing the playoffs in his first two seasons with the Cleveland Cavaliers, James' teams have made the postseason 13 consecutive times.
But will his Los Angeles Lakers make the playoffs this season?
One Las Vegas sportsbook is giving you one more chance to back up your opinion with a bet over the All-Star break.
The Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook reopened odds Friday on a proposition bet if the Lakers will make the playoffs, with both the "yes" and "no" at equal -110 odds.
By Saturday evening, the Lakers were favored to miss the postseason at -125 odds with "yes" at +105 due to a "small accumulation" of bets.
"With the trade deadline having passed and the length of the break over the next week due to the All-Star Game, this prop is polarizing," Jeff Sherman, vice president of risk at The SuperBook told ESPN. "It's at the forefront of interest considering the Lakers' record at this point of the season."
The SuperBook opened odds on the Lakers making the playoffs before the season with the yes heavily favored at -450 (the no was +350). Although 59 percent of bettors thought James' Lakers would miss the playoffs, more than 83 percent of the money was on the yes. This was heavily influenced by one bettor who wagered $50,000 on yes at -500 odds, for a potential profit of $10,000.
The Lakers closed as overwhelming -600 favorites at Westgate to make the postseason.
"You got to decompress and get away from the game a little bit," James said to reporters Tuesday after Los Angeles' most recent loss. "Those guys will have a lot more time than I will, obviously. I'll be right back into it in two days. But just get fresh, get your minds right, get your bodies right. Come back with the notion that we'll make the playoffs."
At 28-29, the Lakers are below .500 for the first time since they were 5-6 on Nov. 7. They currently sit in 10th place in the Western Conference standings, three games behind the LA Clippers for the eighth and final playoff spot. As Dave McMenamin noted, it's the latest into a season that a James-led team has had a sub-.500 record since the Cavaliers finished his rookie season 35-47 in 2003-04.
The SuperBook will take the prop bet down once regular-season play resumes Thursday.