NBA 2019/20 Tips - Team-by-Team Guide and Predictions

With the start of the 2019/20 NBA approaching, we have taken a look at the chances of all 30 franchise in our comprehensive guide to the season.

We've picked out the best bet you can be backing on each team as we assess just what they can expect from the season.

Atlantic Division

Toronto Raptors: The Toronto Raptors lost their best player in Kawhi Leonard. Meanwhile, veterans Kyle Lowry and Marc Gasol might not feel as though they have much pressure on them to continue winning. Head coach Nick Nurse is only in his second season but even if he fails to make the playoffs no one will criticize his capabilities given the title he won in his first season. With Lowry and Gasol each in the final year of their contracts, Toronto is a clear seller -- possibly sooner than later. Happily take the UNDER for total wins. The win total of 46.5 seems really high.

Philadelphia 76ers: The Philadelphia 76ers have Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons signed this year for below value thanks to NBA contract rookie policies. That allowed them to sign both Al Horford and Tobias Harris -- arguably, overpaying each. But the 76ers are a team that doesn't have a good bench. Furthermore, they don't have a good coach in Brett Brown. This is a guy who had a 10-win season a few years back. Even with a bad lineup, a decent coach finds a way to get to 15. The 76ers might have big trouble getting to 54 wins this season. Take UNDER 53.5 with Unibet sportsbook at odds of $2.10.

Boston Celtics: The Boston Celtics are your probable Atlantic Division winners. They have a great coach in Brad Stevens, they have a wicked PG in Kemba Walker, and they have a steal for a center in Enes Kanter at just $4.78M. The supporting cast for Walker is very good and would be great if Gordon Hayward returned to a proximity of his pre-injury form -- which he might. Take the C's with Unibet at $5.50 to win their division.

Brooklyn Nets: The Brooklyn Nets will feature two stars in Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant. However, each of these players can be expected to miss 10-20 games based on their histories. That considered, Brooklyn is a deep team. Chris LeVert, Taurean Prince, and Jarrett Allan are each dangerous players in their own rights at affordable salaries. The question with Brooklyn is their head coach because Kenny Atkinson is not yet a proven winner. However, OVER 44.5 wins looks like a dunk for a bet because of the lineup.

New York Knicks: The New York Knicks might get slaughtered in their in-division games this season. They have the worst coach in David Fizdale, who followed up his firing from Memphis with a .207 winning percentage in New York. Don't be surprised if New York finishes last - not just in their division but in the entire league. Take the UNDER on New York's win total of 27.5. 

Central Division

Milwaukee Bucks: Giannis Antetokounmpo looks like the best bet to win the NBA MVP. He is priced acceptably long at $4.00 and he is the reigning MVP. The other players in the PF and Centre positions on Milwaukee are not going to take a lot of touches away from Antetokounmpo. His averages for REBs and points have gone up each season of his career. He has to plateau sometime but he is already MVP caliber. Take $4.00  for the MVP again this season.

Indiana Pacers: The Indiana Pacers have a decent team with a lot of youth. With a win total of 47.5 and odds of $1.91 on the OVER, the Pacers probably have more upside than downside. Victor Oladipo is the staple but if Myles Turner and/or Domantas Sabonis improve then the Pacers would have some major scoring depth. TJ Warren at $10.8M is a coin toss: if he plays more than 70 games then he would be giving very good value to Indiana. The gamble to take with this team is the OVER.

Detroit Pistons: The Detroit Pistons have a low win total at 36.5 and $1.91. They won 41 games last season with Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond leading the team. Those pieces are still in place. Dwane Casey was the new coach last year and he should improve as he settles into what is still a new organization for him. You have to like that Zaza Pachulia is retired as he ate some bench minutes last year without helping Detroit much. 22-year old Thon Maker should be an improvement on the bench for this team and former MVP Derrick Rose remains a random dice roll with tons of upside. Take the OVER for wins with Detroit.

Chicago Bulls: Zach LaVine of the Chicago Bulls had a break-out year last season. With 23.7 points per game, he was well above his career average. As with all teams, health will be a big deal for Chicago in 2019/20. But a team with LaVine, Thaddeus Young, Otto Porter Jr., and Lauri Markkanen could be dangerous. The supporting cast isn't quite there but at least Fred Hoiberg won't be any part of this season. If Lavine and Markannen each play over 70 games then expect Chicago in the playoffs. Take $4.40 with Unibet on the "Yes" side of the "To Make the Playoffs" market.

Cleveland Cavaliers: The Cleveland Cavaliers' head coach is NBA debutant John Beilein. The Cavs best player is Kevin Love, who only played in 22 games last season. Matters could get really ugly for the Cavs in 2019/20. There's a good chance that their wins only make it to the upper teens, especially with some decent competition in their division. Take the UNDER for Cavs' wins with Unibet at 23.5 and odds of $1.91.

Northwest Division

Utah Jazz: The Utah Jazz have a decent starting lineup and a pretty good bench. But Joe Ingles' best basketball is probably behind him and another problem with this team is that they have Mike Conley's $32.5M cap hit. He hasn't played a full NBA season since 2013/14 and a couple years ago, he only played 12 games. But Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell are a good enough duo to change the complexion of a lot of games. 53.5 wins looks a little low for wins: take the OVER at $1.91.

Denver Nuggets: Paul Millsap's scoring average is way down from his time in Atlanta and he is a heavy cap hit at $30.3M. However, the Nuggets have Nikola Jokic, Gary Harris, Will Barton, and Jamal Murray. Murray and MVP-candidate Jokic could both really come into their own this season. Don't expect Denver to do much in the playoffs against LA-based teams. However, the Northwest Division looks like there's: take them at $2.40 with Unibet to win it.

Portland Trailblazers: The Portland Trailblazers are one of the toughest reads in the NBA this season. With Damian Lilliard and CJ McCollum, Portland has an excellent backcourt. They definitely have depth with Hassan Whiteside, Kent Bazemore, and Jusuf Nurkic. Also, all of Rodney Hood, Skal Labissiere, and Pau Gasol are capable of playing strong. But with all that's going on in the Western Conference and the Northwest Division, placing Portland is difficult. Longshot odds are all you can indulge. If things go bonkers, then you'll be happy to have Portland at $21.00 to win their conference with Unibet.

Minnesota Timberwolves: The Minnesota Timberwolves look like prospective sellers this season. Wiggins is well over-rated and KAT won't solve Minnesota's problems by himself. While neither of them is likely to be moved, Jeff Teague is a rental prospect for late season as he is in the last year of a contract. The Wolves have little after him and their prospects look bleak. Take the UNDER 34.5 at $1.91.  

OKC Thunder: Chris Paul is OKC's best player but he hasn't appeared in more than 61 games since 2015/16. His relevance in the league isn't clear at this point amidst a scoring average and an assists average that both appear to be post-peak. OKC has such a sick number of draft picks coming up that they can only be focused on the future. $38.5M for Paul won't be fun to pay: don't be surprised if OKC wants to ship him for youth. Take OKC UNDER 31.5 wins at $1.91.

Pacific Division

Los Angeles Clippers: The Los Angeles Clippers will probably win the most games during the upcoming regular season. They have Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, two reliable players in their primes. Only Patrick Beverley looks like he is overpaid and there's a chance he has a strong season still. Take the Clippers to win the Western Conference at $3.00 with Sportsbet. Also, go with the OVER for regular-season wins at 56.5 and $1.91 with Unibet.

Los Angeles Lakers: The situation with the Los Angeles Lakers isn't great. They have Lebron James, Anthony Davis, and DeMarcus Cousins as top players. However, James is coming off his worst season for games played at 55. Davis is also coming off his worst season from the same point of view at 56. Lastly, DeMarcus Cousins' problems with playing time hardly require comment. This is a team that will be managed to peak for the playoffs but regular-season achievements won't be a goal: take UNDER 51.5 wins.

Golden State Warriors: Are the Golden State Warriors in a rebuild or are they trying to contend? With $118.7M locked up in four players, you'd think the latter. But the Warriors lack depth and Steph Curry has missed an average of 22 games the last two seasons. He misses a chunk like that this upcoming season and GS might go 7-15 during such a stretch. There's a chance that they go into a rebuild after maxing out their season-ticket sales. Take the Warriors to miss the playoffs at $3.60 with Unibet (ie. To reach the Playoffs - NO).

Sacramento Kings: The Sacramento Kings might be an interesting team. They have big money in their top-four players but none of which are capable of leading a contender. However, their contracts for Marvin Bagley III, Buddy Hield, and De'Aaron Fox are manageable and those are players with significant potential. The Clippers will be tough to beat for the division but odds on Sacramento to win the Pacific Division of $36.00 are still too long to pass on with Unibet.

Phoenix Suns: How should the Phoenix Suns play their hand this upcoming season? They are looking up at two goliaths in their division in the (if-healthy) Clippers and Lakers. Meanwhile, the Kings also look better while the Warriors, if they don't enter a rebuild, look better than the Suns do too. Phoenix can't hope for a divisional title but there is a chance they slaughter a 27.5 win-total target with Unibet. Devin Booker, Kelly Oubre Jr., and Deandre Ayton can all score while Ricky Rubio can pass. Take OVER 27.5 wins with Unibet at EVEN odds of $2.00.

Southeast Division

Miami Heat: The Miami Heat have Jimmy Butler but who do they have after that? Goran Dragic is a second-tier point guard and Kelly Olynyk is a rounded player - not one that can take over a game. Looking at contracts, the Heat will pay Ryan Anderson $5.1M for nothing, James Johnson $15.1M for who knows what, and Dion Waiters $12.1M for what might only be a 40-game season (if you average out the last three). If Butler misses his normal, let's say, 15 games then Miami might go 3-12 during that stretch. Take the UNDER for win totals for this team with Unibet at odds of $1.91 and a high target of 42.5.

Orlando Magic: The Orlando Magic should be your Southeast Division favorites. At the moment, they are second favorites with SportsBet behind Miami. But Orlando doesn't have a bad contract to speak of. Also, all of their top-seven big-money players are below the age of 30. Aaron Gordon, at the age of 24, should still be improving. If he has a strong season, Orlando might runaway with the Southeast Division. Pound them at $2.25 to win their division this upcoming season.

Atlanta Hawks: Atlanta is one team in the NBA that punters should be targeting for UNDER bets for win totals. They are set at 32.5 wins this upcoming season at odds of $1.91. The Hawks have one of the worst contracts out there with 6'10" small forward Chandler Parsons. He'll make a little more than $25M this upcoming season and the Hawks probably won't get more than 8 points per game or 3 boards per game for that price. If any kind of injuries inflict Atlanta then they won't have tons of wiggle room, partly due to this contract. Look for them to tally UNDER 32.5 wins.

Washington Wizards: It's not clear if John Wall will see any court time in the upcoming season. Regardless, he will take home $38.2M in salary. There isn't a team in the NBA that can pay that kind of salary without getting a return on the court, yet, it's possible that Washington gets absolutely nothing. Bradley Beal will have to carry a huge load this upcoming season and he won't be able to do it. Don't be surprised if Beal wants out of Washington. If he stays in, then he might get injured himself due to the workload that's coming. Take the Wizards to tally UNDER 27.5 wins.

Charlotte Hornets: Can the starless Charlotte Hornets win more than 23.5 games this season? Their best player is Nicolas Batum, a player that will likely be well overpaid at $25.5M. However, what can't be ignored with Charlotte is their low-win total in relation to their crummy division. With plenty of games against Atlanta, Washington, and a Heat team that looks reliant on one player, Charlotte might do the trick and get to 24 wins. Take the OVER with Unibet at $1.91.

Southwest Division

Houston Rockets: The Houstons Rockets will probably beat their win total for 2019/20. They are priced at $1.91 with Unibet for a target of 52.5 wins. For a team that has Russell Westbrook and James Harden, you have to think they might do 60+ wins. Either one of them is capable of carrying the load if things don't go right on a particular night for the other. Additionally, Clint Capela in the centre position should keep Houston very solid on defense: take OVER 52.5 at $1.91 with Unibet.

San Antonio Spurs: The San Antonio Spurs should be opposed. If you look at all of their top players, then you see six guys that are all over 30 years old. At some point in the season, you would expect big money to be on the sidelines and injured for the Spurs. Also, head coach Gregg Popovich has had his worst seasons in the last two. He probably won't retire soon but the Spurs look like a club that might be entering a period of decline. Take them not to make the playoffs at $2.60 with Unibet.

Dallas Mavericks: Kristaps Porzingis at $27.2M could be a disaster due to his history of injuries. Tim Hardaway Jr. isn't a bargain at $18.1M and neither is Courtney Lee at $12.7M. But Luka Doncic might make the shortlist of MVP candidates by season's end. Also, Boban Marjanovic might rob 3-4 games himself this season given his incredible production - when he's playable. The win total looks low at 38.5. Take the OVER at $1.91 and hope Porzingis and Doncic play 55 games together - that should be enough to leave only a small balance of wins to pick-up in the other games.

New Orleans Pelicans: The 2019/20 NBA season will probably be really ugly for New Orleans. Jrue Holiday isn't really a Top-10 PG but he's hauling away $26.1M  He is signed through this season and next but he has "trade" written all over him. The way New Orleans looks, building a future around Lonzo Ball and Zion Williamson looks like the right move to make. If New Orleans goes full rebuild then they won't come close to 39.5 wins. Even if they stay the way they are, they don't have a bench that looks anything like a team that can challenge for .500. Take the UNDER 39.5 wins at $1.91 - happily.

Memphis Grizzlies: The Memphis Grizzlies are a team with some depth. However, the top-end of their lineup isn't strong. Angre Iguodala at 35-years old supported by both Jonas Valanciunas and Solomon Hill does not look like it's going to work. Memphis has a few too many small forwards as well. But at least the Grizzlies have a low-win total with the sportsbooks. Point guard Ja Morant is probably NBA ready and he is an intelligent player. He could help Memphis blow the top off of 26.5 wins this season.


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NBA 2019/20 Tips - Team-by-Team Guide and Predictions

With the start of the 2019/20 NBA approaching, we have taken a look at the chances of all 30 franchise in our comprehensive guide to the season.

Read more »

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