We’re now just past the mid-way point of the 2021-22 NBA season, and key events like the trade deadline and the All-Star Game are less than a month away. That makes it a perfect time to reset and take a big picture look at the league. And, in particular, where teams stand in the title race.
Much of the past decade was dominated by superteams like the Miami Heat and Golden State Warriors, but due to a combination of player movement, injuries and COVID-19, there is now a good deal of parity at the top of the league. Multiple teams in each conference have a legitimate chance to win it all, which isn’t always the case.
Despite everything they have going on, both on and off the court, the Brooklyn Nets (+260) remain the favorites, per Caesers Sportsbook. Rounding out the top four are the Golden State Warriors (+400), Milwaukee Bucks (+700) and Phoenix Suns (+700). There’s then a significant drop-off to the Utah Jazz (+1100). The Los Angeles Lakers have the seventh-best odds (+1600).
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Here’s a look at the top contenders:
Injuries to James Harden and Kyrie Irving ruined the Nets’ chances last season, but there was fairly widespread agreement that with everyone healthy they were the clear favorites heading into this season. Then Irving refused to get the COVID-19 vaccine, which means he’s still not allowed to play in home games and…