WNBA Futures Rolling As Sports Bettors Make Their Picks For 2021

Posted on May 20, 2021

The WNBA season has officially kicked off, and sportsbooks have released futures odds for all 12 teams battling it out across 32 games this year.

Public betting has caused Indiana sportsbooks to lengthen odds on some teams and shorten the lines on others. One of those teams to see significant movement is close to home for Indiana bettors.

How the public is betting WNBA futures

One team that bettors seem to like to like a lot is the Minnesota Lynx.

DraftKings Sportsbook reports that a bettor in Pennsylvania put down $900 on Minnesota to win it all this season.

Earlier this month, wagers on the Lynx to nab the title represented 33% of the handle in that market for DraftKings.

William Hill Sportsbook has seen similar activity.

Thus, books like William Hill have shortened their Minnesota odds tremendously. The sportsbook has the Lynx +800, a far cry from the +4000 they sat at when the markets first went live.

According to Nick Bogdanovich, director of trading for William Hill US,

“We definitely lose big with the Lynx. That’s the only team we have any liability with, even though the Aces have about twice as many tickets and dollars as anyone else. The Lynx went from 40/1 down to 20/1 and are now at +800. Someone definitely likes Minnesota, professional money I would imagine.”

Another team of more local relevance that has seen a lot of movement is the Chicago Sky. DraftKings had Chicago +1100 at first drop. Now, the Sky championship odds rest at +600.

So far, Chicago looks like a legitimate contender, though only through two regular-season games. At the same time, the longshot odds on the Indiana Fever appear quite justified.

Indiana Fever struggling to start 2021

With 29 regular-season contests left on the schedule, the Fever have begun the 2021 campaign winless. Indiana held a double-digit lead over New York in its season-opener, only to see Liberty guard Sabrina Ionescu hit the first game-winner of her young career.

Since then, the Fever have lost the following two games by an average of 14.5 points.

BetRivers IN Sportsbook currently has the Fever with the longest championship odds of +10000, only matched by the Atlanta Dream.

The Fever have been playing without last season’s top draft pick Lauren Cox, however.

Cox has been practicing with the team as she completes her recovery from a knee injury last year. Her ability to stretch the floor and her size could make Indiana’s offense far more dangerous for opponents.

Even a healthy and productive Cox probably doesn’t make the Fever a championship squad in 2021, though. However, bettors who want to get in on Chicago might be advised to do so now.

The odds could only get shorter from here for Chicago

The Chicago Sky have started out 2-0 and showed their depth in a win over Atlanta Wednesday night.

Without free-agent acquisition Candace Parker or all-time leading scorer Allie Quigley in the lineup, Chicago still got the road win in large part due to Kahleah Copper’s season-high 23 points.

Quigley has played sparingly so far and 2021 top draft pick Shyla Heal has yet to make her Sky debut. The Australian national is still in quarantine due to league rules regarding COVID-19.

If the Sky keep winning, the potential return on bets for a championship will only get poorer. Obviously, two games are a small sample. The arrow is pointing up, though, so now might be the time to get in while the getting’s good.

Photo by Associated Press
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Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a freelance journalist who resides in Chicago. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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