On Tuesday, October 18, the NBA roars back into action with leading contenders on both sides of the bracket taking to the court. 

The 2022/23 season tips off with the Boston Celtics against the Philadelphia 76ers, followed by the Golden State Warriors taking on the Los Angeles Lakers. 

The Celtics and Warriors will be looking to lay down the gauntlet ahead of what both sides hope will be a championship-winning campaign. 

Of course, there are several other teams that put themselves in the same boat for title contention, which is what we’ll be looking at in this NBA season preview. Here’re the odds for the top teams, with more information below:

Eastern NBA Championship Frontrunners: MIL +650, BOS +650, BKN +700

Western NBA Championship Frontrunners: GSW +600, LAC +700, PHX +900

Eastern Conference Favourites for NBA Crown

The NBA Championship looks to be incredibly closely contested this season, with the odds stacking up the Eastern Conference’s three favourites with very narrow margins. 

Leading the way are the Milwaukee Bucks and Boston Celtics at +650 each. Neither topped the conference last season, but both have enjoyed a strong offseason. 

Of the two, though, the Celtics clearly had the superior summer, adding Malcolm Brogdon at very little cost to the title hopefuls as the unofficial sixth man to a starting line-up that was already the envy of the NBA. 

Pile on the addition of Danilo Gallinari to a bench that also boasts Grant Williams and Derrick White, and you have a 2022 title contender that’s only improved.

It might not be long before their NBA odds of +650 to win the NBA Championship look very underpriced.

For the Bucks, you can expect another rather relaxed season, with the team not posting more than 52 wins since 2019/20 with the aim of postseason preservation.

Still, if Khris Middleton and their other stars remain on the court, it’s impossible to rule Milwaukee out of a run at the Larry O’Brien Trophy. 

While they’re graded as close contenders at +700, there’s still a sense that everything that can go wrong will continue to do so for the Brooklyn Nets. 

The star-studded side has suffered from injuries and player adjuration consistently, with Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and either Ben Simmons or James Harden sharing the court on only 15 of 158 possible occasions. 

Durant is staying, though, and there’s hope that Simmons is finally fit and ready to go. On paper, the Nets deserve to be among the favourites, but since the 2019 free agency haul, it’s been one drama and slip-up after another. 

Warriors Lead Western Conference Picks

A favourite for live betting – especially as they face the Lakers on opening night – the Golden State Warriors managed to keep Kevon Looney and essentially stole Donte DiVencenzo and JaMychal Green to patch free agency holes. 

The reigning champions will be expecting Jonathan Kuminga and Moses Moody to step into bigger roles, as well as much of the same from a hopefully-calmed star squad of Draymond Green, Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, and Andrew Wiggins. 

As it stands, the champions are expected to repeat at +600 to win the NBA Championship. Looking to put a stick in their spokes from the Western Conference are the Los Angeles Clippers at +700.

Certainly not very far behind at all, the Clippers lost a reliable piece in Isaiah Hartenstein over the summer but have taken a gamble on five-time All-Star John Wall. 

Wall has fleetingly been spotted on the court in recent years, but if he can stay fit in a more complementary role, he could propel the Clippers to a memorable campaign.

Lastly, there’s the Phoenix Suns. An undoubtedly mighty unit, the Suns have gone to the NBA Finals and topped the regular season standings in the last couple of seasons. 

However, the longer +900 odds for them to go all the way this season greatly stems from off-court issues, including the treatment of Deandre Ayton and Robert Sarver looking to sell his stake in the Suns.

From the Warriors to the Bucks, the top end of NBA contenders is stacked.

Both Conferences have a few true competitors for the crown, but coming in this NBA season preview, Golden State is narrowly favoured to repeat. 

*Credit for all images in this article belongs to AP Photo*


FIRST PUBLISHED: 14th October 2022

Ben is very much a sports nerd, being obsessed with statistical deep dives and the numbers behind the results and performances.

Top of the agenda are hockey, soccer, and boxing, but there's always time for the NFL, cricket, Formula One, and a bit of mixed martial arts.