08 Oct And The Favorites To Win the 2017 NBA Title Are…
The NBA’s 2017 season is just around the corner. And before we officially start the season, let’s take a look at who the gambling gods have installed as the favorites to win the NBA 2017 title:
1.Golden State Warriors (-125)
Key Additions: Kevin Durant, David West, Zaza Pachulia
Key Losses: Andrew Bogut, Harrison Barnes, Festus Ezeli, Mareesse Speights, Leandro Barbosa
The world’s worst fear came true when Kevin Durant bolted the OKC Thunder to join the dethroned champions Golden State Warriors. Already having the prolific scoring duo of the Splash Brothers, the Dubs added the services of the 4-time NBA scoring champion. After going for 9 points in his Warriors debut against the Raptors last Oct. 1, Durant’s gone 14-21 from the field, including 7-10 from the three point area. Still too early to conclude but it looks as if Durant’s fit rather well into Steve Kerr’s system. With a triple barrelled shotgun now, the 2017 Warriors are one the most offensively gifted team in the history of the NBA and without doubt the most prolific scoring team in the league this season.
2.Cleveland Cavaliers (+300)
Key Additions: Mike Dunleavy Jr., Chris Andersen
Key Losses: Matthew Dellavedova, Timofey Mozgov
Fresh off erasing the curse of Cleveland, the Cavaliers should be riding high on the momentum of their first ever NBA title. After what they’ve been through to win the Larry O’Brien trophy, you bet they’re going to fight tooth and nail to defend it. ‘All-In’ was the Cavs slogan last season and it should be their battlecry this year. Losing just two reserves, the Cavs have their core intact for a second title run. Of course all depends on what happens with J.R. Smith. After a world tour spent without wearing a t-shirt, Smith was supposed to get a lucrative deal. However, two weeks into the pre-season, Smith remains unsigned. The Cavs have added Mike Dunleavy and Chris Andersen to their line-up but J.R. Smith’s return ( or otherwise) should prove to be the key factor in the Cavs’ winning the 2017 NBA title.
3.San Antonio Spurs (+900)
Key Addition: Pau Gasol
Key Losses: Tim Duncan, Boris Diaw, David West
One one side, you can call this the Spurs’ first season without Tim Duncan. On the opposite, you may want to cal this the first season of the Kawhi Leonard era. Leonard has developed into one of the league’s best two way players and a legit MVP contender. He finished second to Steph Curry in the voting but definitely had the better year on year progress. For as long as Greg Popovich remains, the Spurs will be the Spurs. They may never replace Tim Duncan’s leadership but man for man, they got a better replacement in former Lakers’ big man Pau Gasol who had a career resurgence with the Chicago Bulls last season.
4.Boston Celtics (+1800)
Key Addition: Al Horford, Jayden Brown
Key Losses: Evan Turner, JJ Sullinger, Tyler Zeller
The over-achieving Boston Celtics finally landed a star in Al Horfod. They also added Jayden Brown with the 3rd pick in the 2016 NB draft. With their existing core of Isaiah Thomas, Marcus Smart, Avery Bradley and Jae Crowder, the Celtics are projected to be one of the tough defensive teams in the league. Take note also that the C’s still lave lottery picks on hand ( both theirs and the Nets ) which they can use if and when there will be a big name available for a trade during the season. With this chips on hand and with the guidance of the brilliant Brad Stevens, look for the Celtics to be needle movers this season.
5.Los Angeles Clippers (+2500)
Key Additions: Mares Speights, Raymond Felton
Key Losses: Jeff Green, Cole Aldrich
The Clippers didn’t do much to change in the offseason. With their core playing together since 2011, the Los Angeles Clippers are perennial threats to win the NBA title. However, the label has always been that and has never changed: perennial threats. Despite having an all-star core of Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, DeAndre Jordan and Jamal Crawford, the Clippers have never made it to the Conference Finals during their impressive run. And after nearly losing DeAndre Jordan to the Mavs, time may be running out on this current bunch of Clippers to deliver the championship.
The Toronto Raptors (+4000), Oklahoma City Thunder (+4000), Chicago Bulls (+4000), Indiana Pacers (+6600) and Minnesota Timberwolves (+6600) round out the top 10 in the oddsmakers’ favourites as of October 3, 2016. Of Course the numbers change as the season progresses. One thing is likely probable though: We may see a rematch of the Cavaliers-Warriors finals. Now who’s gonna win round 3 should it boil down to them?
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