The NBA season finally starts next Tuesday — party at Melas’ house and everyone is invited — which means it’s time to start talking Vegas favorites. As everybody knows, the best way to make money is by betting your life savings on an underdog and hoping they’ll come through. It works in movies all the time and it’s proven to be a sound investment strategy.

As such, you’ll need to get familiar with which teams the world’s oddsmakers like. Thankfully, Bodog has you covered. Check out their favorites:

Odds to win 2011 NBA Championship

Miami Heat — 17/10
Los Angeles Lakers — 5/2
Boston Celtics — 17/2
Orlando Magic — 13/1
Oklahoma City Thunder — 14/1
Chicago Bulls — 18/1
Dallas Mavericks — 20/1
San Antonio Spurs — 28/1
Denver Nuggets — 30/1
Portland Trail Blazers — 30/1

Even though the Lakers have won two straight championships and have an easier path to the Finals, the Heat are a tiny favorite this year. Fair enough, considering they’re going to be a very good team. But if you’re looking for a good bet, the Spurs are pretty enticing. 28/1 odds for a team that everyone always assumes has a chance at a title are pretty nice.

As for the worst teams, the Raptors, Cavaliers and Timberwolves each are given 200/1 odds of winning the Larry O’Brien trophy, which I’m guessing means that 200/1 is as high as the odds go. Don’t waste your money, friends.