We heard some good news today, at least when it comes to sports. The NBA is back so today we’ll look at some NBA Season picks and parlays! According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the board of governors will vote Thursday on a plan proposed by commissioner Adam Silver.
Resumption In Magical Kingdom
If all goes well, the season will resume July 31 in Orlando, Florida at the Magical Kingdom. From everything we heard today, it will include 22 teams — the 16 teams currently in the playoffs plus the Pelicans, Blazers, Suns, Kings, Spurs and Wizards. These teams were chosen because they were within 6 games in standings upon season suspension.
Those 22 teams will play eight regular season games to determine playoff seeding along with a potential spot in a “play-in” type scenario. Here is the breakdown: after those eight games, if the 8-seed is within four games of the 9-seed, those two teams will play heads-up for the final spot. The 8-seed will have to win just once while the 9-seed will have to win twice in a row.
NBA Season Odds
Which brings us to the gambling aspect of things. As bettors, most of our eyes will now be fixated on the NBA futures market now that we know the NBA is coming back. Jeff Sherman of the WestGate SuperBook re-posted title odds shortly after today’s announcements, which was like music to my ears:
Bucks, Clippers 3/1
Rockets, Celtics 16/1
Raptors, 76ers 20/1
Mavericks, Heat, Nets 40/1
Thunder, Blazers, Pelicans 80/1
Grizzlies, Magic 1000/1
Kings, Spurs, Wizards 2000/1
Per those NBA odds, three teams stand out as championship favorites. The Lakers are the overall favorites, followed by the Bucks and Clippers.
While the Lakers have been great all season long and were playing their best basketball of the season before this hiatus, I’m off of them winning it all this year. LAL is too top heavy and after such a long break, I worry about LeBron James and Anthony Davis’ health. Both have been having MVP-type seasons, but you just never know. The Lakers are also a little too top heavy for my liking. If you want to make a run, especially after a situation like this where everyone has been off for such a long period of time, you need depth.
NBA Season Chalk Picks:
If you are going chalk, I love both the Bucks and the Clippers. Not going out on a limb here, but they provide more value than the Lakers. Look below for my two longshot plays.
Milwaukee Bucks 3-1
The Giannis Antetokounmpo-led Milwaukee Bucks are the clear-cut favorites to represent the Eastern Conference in the NBA Finals. The only team I can really see knocking them off is the Boston Celtics, but I see their time coming next season.
As long as Giannis stays healthy, I see them with an easier path than the Lakers. Milwaukee also has chemistry and depth. They came up short last season, but it would not surprise me at all if they won it all this year.
Los Angeles Clippers 3-1
The Clippers have been my pick since before the season started, so I will ride with them once again. LAC has depth, defense and a coach that has been there before, all of which is important to make a long playoff run. They also have one of the best players in the game in Kawhi Leonard. The Klaw showed just how clutch he was last season, and I don’t see anyone stopping him again this postseason. He is like the Terminator, and him this team will keep coming at you, especially on the defensive side of the ball. They have tremendous length, which will cause havoc come playoff time.
NBA Season Picks Longshots:
Portland Trail Blazers 80-1
Let’s start our longshots picks with the Blazers, who were one the most disappointing NBA teams in the League this season. But, they have one of the best backcourts in the game in CJ McCollum and Damian Lillard, have a vet in Carmelo Anthony who has been there and they get Jusuf Nurkic back from a broken leg he sustained at the end of the 2018-19 season.
The Blazers went into the Covid-19 “break” having won three of five. The bright spot for them was Hassan Whiteside during that stretch.
This is a squad that has been there before, as they made it to the conference finals last season before losing to the Golden State Warriors. To me, it is definitely worth sprinkling a little on the Blazers at these odds.
Houston Rockets 16-1
Love him or hate him, James Harden is the most explosive scorer in the NBA. The same goes for his back court mate Russell Westbrook, who is a triple-double machine. Both of these guys are now playoff veterans and should know what it takes come playoff time. There are also new pictures that have surfaced of Harden’s physique and let’s just say he looks in shape and ready to go. A big change from some years past. Can a lot of other players say the same right now? No clue what kind of shape other guys are going to be in.
The Rockets small ball lineup is capable of hitting a lot of 3’s. If some things break right for them like some big teams sustain injuries for instance, and Harden gets hot, lookout. At this price, they are worth looking at.
So, that’s it for our season NBA picks and parlays, can’t wait for the first tip-off!