Kawhi Leonard and the Raptors are holding strong as slim favorites for Game 1 of the NBA Finals on Thursday night in Toronto.
Sharp bettors tilted the market as high as Toronto minus-1½ after the Warriors opened as 1-point favorites.
Public money helped the number settle back at Toronto minus-1 at the Westgate sportsbook and most other books. A few books had moved the game to pick as of 2 p.m. Thursday, though oddsmakers see it as a favorable spot for the Raptors.
“We feel it’s a must-win game for Toronto, especially being at home and with the long layoff for Golden State,” Westgate sportsbook director Jeff Sherman said. “A loss by the Raptors would just put them in such a deep hole.”
The consensus total is 213.
As of 1 p.m. Thursday, 77 percent of the tickets and 68 percent of the money at Westgate had sided with the Warriors.
Golden State is a minus-300 favorite in the series.
Game 1 tips off shortly after 6 p.m.