Gareth Freeman has taken a look at the NBA odds and offers his NBA tips ahead of the new season.
LeBron James is now a Laker, Boston Celtics should be the new powerhouse in the Eastern Conference but Golden State Warriors remain the team to beat.
Golden State Warriors @ 8/13 - BET NOW
It feels like a bit of a cop-out going for the NBA betting favourite but Golden State are up there with the best teams ever seen and their star-studded line-up can become the sixth team to complete a three-peat.
Admittedly, the Warriors have endured a pretty miserable preseason and go into their opener against Oklahoma City Thunder on the back of three straight defeats. However, they had a slow start last year and upped their game for the postseason and it could well be a similar story this time around.
GSW have largely kept their squad intact with Zaza Pachulia their only notable departure. The veteran Georgian center has been replaced by four-time All-Star DeMarcus Cousins in what, on paper at least, should be an upgrade.
The Warriors are a slick, well drilled unit with plenty of individual quality and have been together now as a team for a number of years. I’m expecting them to be even better this year and even at a short price are worth backing.
Houston took Golden State to seven games in the Western Conference Finals and if anyone is to wreck their bid for a third successive title and a fourth in five years the Rockets look the most likely candidates and are available at NBA odds of 9/1 to win the Championship.
Central Division Winner
Indiana Pacers @ 6/4 - BET NOW
LeBron James’ exit from Cleveland Cavaliers gives Indiana Pacers a real chance to claim a division title and they may be able to edge out the 11/10 favourites Milwaukee Bucks.
Indiana have been excellent at home in recent years and had a record of 27-14 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse last year. The Pacers just about managed a winning record on the road with 21-20 and if they can improve on their travels may be a force in the Eastern Conference in 2018-19, providing they can remain strong at home.
Rookie Of The Year
Colin Sexton @ 9/1 - BET NOW
Colin Sexton was the eighth pick in the 2018 NBA draft as Cleveland went for the 19-year-old after one season in college basketball with Alabama Crimson Tide.
Had James remained with the Cavs he would have been used sparingly but there is a chance he could feature fairly regularly in the season ahead. Sexton won the SEC Freshman of the Year award in 2018 and has the highest recruiting star rating possible from ESPN.
Picking a potential rookie of the year is never an exact science – players can excel at college level and then struggle in the big time of the NBA – but Sexton looks a real talent and as an outside pick for these NBA tips is a solid option at 9/1.
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