We are just over a week away from the start of the NBA Season. I am pumped for the year and looking forward to getting all of the future plays out to the clients. Just so you are aware, you do receive all futures when you buy before the season tips off. Last year we did well with them and hit two MAX plays. One of them was on the Bulls and it probably would've cashed even easier than the sweat we had at the end of the year.
Milwaukee Bucks 51 - 31 last year, 1st in division
The Bucks didn't really have to try last year and still finished third overall in the conference and took out the aforementioned Bulls in the first round of the playoffs. The Bucks didn't really do anything in the offseason to make their team better, but did they need to? Giannis is on your team, so how often do you need to do a ton? They took Boston to seven games without Khris Middleton. Now that he is back they should be fine for the year. I do have a bit of concern about their depth, though. Their bench isn't really deep. We have three players that are going to see regular minutes off the bench. Their win total is at 52.5, that's probably about right, I'm not touching it.
Chicago Bulls 46 - 36 , 2nd
The Bulls had a strange year last year. They started the season really strong and were in first place in the East for part of the year last year. Then injuries crippled them and they fell to the sixth spot. They still made the playoffs and avoided the Play In Tournament, but the Bucks were able to handle them with ease in the opening round. Now Lonzo Ball is still injured and may not be back this year. They didn't really get better in any spot specifically, but if Alex Caruso and Patrick Williams are in for a full year, 50 wins could be realistic.
Cleveland Cavaliers 44 - 38, 3rd
According to statmuse.com, Donovan Mitchell has a record of 18-19 without Rudy Gobert. Did you ever watch the Jazz when Gobert was out? They were terrible defensively. Now, Mitchell upgrades his defense with Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen. But, neither of them are Rudy Gobert. The Cavs are going to be a deep team with some real talent. Just keep in mind, the reason they were so good last year was because Darius Garland was becoming a star and the team worked together. Will it be the same with Mitchell in the fold now? 47.5 wins is... well too much for me to get on board with but I wouldn't be surprised at all.
Indiana Pacers 25 - 57, 4th
This is a strange Pacers team. It is like they can't decide what they want to do - win or lose. They tried to sign DeAndre Ayton to a deal despite the fact that they will not be competitive and should finish last in their division. Even if they had Ayton that would probably be true. I can't imagine anyone other than Tyrese Haliburton is untouchable on their roster and would expect Buddy Hield to be traded by the deadline. If they were smart, they'd try and tank for Victor Wembayana now. Under 23 wins is a real possibility but there will be very little room here.
Detroit Pistons 23 - 59, 5th
This is the best Pistons team that they've put together since the glory years of Rip Hamilton and Chauncey Billups. Cade Cunningham will be an awesome player, Jaden Ivy could be the steal of the draft, and I've always liked Saddiq Bey. Now they added a veteran shooter in Bojan Bogdanovic. That obviously opens the floor but also should provide some much needed guidance for these younger guys. Outside of their first unit, they may have some struggles. 30 wins is realistic and I will play over 29.5 at -125 for a unit.