The NBA has had a big summer in terms of staying in the mainstream sports cycle during its offseason. The free-agent frenzy around LeBron James and countless other star players has basketball bettors daydreaming of the 2018-19 season.
The NBA released its full schedule this past week – including Opening Night, Christmas Day, and MLK Day showcases – and with that comes season win totals for all 30 NBA teams. While you count down the days until tipoff on October 16, here are some Over and Under expert sports betting picks for the season win total bets to consider:
Golden State Warriors (season win total 62.5)
The Warriors have nothing left to prove. Golden State has won three titles in four years, set the all-time wins mark back in 2015-16, and ripped the hearts out of every team in the West by adding DeMarcus Cousins to the lineup this summer. Essentially, there are 82 games in the way of another Warriors’ run to the playoffs.
When a team is that dominant it’s hard to stay motivated, and especially after the injury scares the Dubs went through last season, it would be to no surprise if head coach Steve Kerr pumped the breaks a few times over the regular season. Golden State finished with 58 victories last season and has the privilege of being on cruise control for most of the regular season. Cousins and his bum Achilles will likely sit out until the New Year, and then chemistry becomes as an issue as they work him into the offense.
Take the Under 62.5 wins now, and then bet on the Warriors’ adjusted futures odds to win the NBA title after they slow-play the regular season. You’ll get a much better deal in January then you will now.
Pick: Under 62.5
Indiana Pacers (season win total 47.5)
Now that LeBron is gone, the Pacers are the favorites to reign over the NBA Central Division. Indiana will be challenged by the Milwaukee Bucks for that vacant crown, but this team is coming off 48 wins in 2017-18 and improved with some key additions this offseason.
Defense was the Pacers’ strength and remains so, but their 17th-ranked offense gets a shot in the arm with Tyreke Evans, Kyle O’Quinn and Doug McDermott adding some scoring depth around Victor Oladipo and Bojan Bogdanovic. Indiana also snapped up Aaron Holiday in the draft, and he looked great in summer league action and has a pro pedigree with his two brothers also playing in the NBA.
The Pacers are co-faves to win the division with Milwaukee, both set at +110. Given that LeBron led the Cavs to the top of the division with 50 wins last season, Indiana looks like a lock to top that win total this year.
Pick: Over 47.5
Oklahoma City Thunder (season win total 50.5)
The Thunder made waves last summer by adding Paul George and Carmelo Anthony to play alongside MVP Russell Westbrook. That “Big 3” experiment went sour early on, as the three stars struggled to gel, but OKC started to round into form late and finished with 48 wins – Under the 51.5 projected victories.
Now, Melo is in Houston and oddsmakers have slimmed the Thunder’s win total by just one game compared to last year. Oklahoma City still has two of the top players in the NBA in George and Westbrook, and Year 2 with each other shouldn’t see that slow start like last fall. The team also added Dennis Schroder from the Hawks, giving OKC a reliable scorer off the bench.
The Western Conference is a grind, even more so with James coming to L.A., but the Thunder look more organic this season, rather than the mish-mashed superstar roster that was made to contend with the Warriors and settle a fanbase still pissed about Kevin Durant leaving town. Oklahoma City is priced at +190 to win the Northwest and will need more than 50 wins to do so.
Pick: Over 50.5