Basketball, one of the most popular sports in the world, is back. The NBA regular season started on Tuesday, October 19th, and concludes on April 10th. Playoffs will begin shortly after.
So, which teams are expected to reach the playoffs and maybe go all the way?
According to most analysts, the Eastern Conference will be mainly a two-horse race between the Nets and the 2021 Champions Milwaukee Bucks. Most see that as the conference’s final matchup.
Miami added some talent over the summer, Atlanta’s getting stronger, and if the 76ers figure out the Ben Simmons situation, all can be in contention as well.
While there’s a consensus over the East, the West looks complicated to predict. The frontrunner is the Lakers. While this group doesn’t look like some of the great Lakers’ teams over the years, LeBron and AD did get some veteran help, so they should go all the way to the finals.
The Lakers are on top of many people’s lists to win the West, but a considerable number of experts disagree. Utah Jazz, Denver Nuggets, and Phoenix Suns are all considered contenders to take the West.
The wildcard in the West can be the Warriors. Klay Thompson is expected to come back in a few months, and Steph Curry started the season on fire. While we might not see the Warriors that broke multiple records, we shouldn’t remove them from the equation just yet.
Individually, Kevin Durant is the No.1 pick to win the MVP. Luka Doncic and Giannis come on top for some. The rookie of the year will be either Cade Cunningham or Jalen Green, while the most improved player will most likely be Michael Porter Jr. from the Nuggets.
At the time of writing, the odds are:
- Brooklyn Nets: +205 (DraftKings), +250 (BetMGM), +250 (FanDuel)
- Los Angeles Lakers: +400 (DraftKings and BetMGM), +450 (FanDuel)
- Milwaukee Bucks: +650 (FanDuel), +900 (DraftKings and BetMGM)
- Golden State Warriors: +900 (BetMGM), +1,000 (DraftKings), +1,200 (FanDuel)
Everything points at the Nets taking the crown, but that can all change with a major injury or two.