The NBA Playoffs are upon us and for the next 6 weeks or so, 16 teams will battle it out for the right to be called NBA Champions. In this segment we will take a quick look at the NBA Western Conference, with odds for each team in both their chances to win the West and the NBA title.
Odds To Win The Western Conference and NBA Title-- NBA Title Odds in ( )-- San Antonio Spurs +120 (+280)... Oklahoma City Thunder +200 (+400)... Los Angeles Clippers +480 (+1000)... Houston Rockets +1000 (+2000)... Portland Trailblazers +2500 (+5000) Memphis Grizzlies +3500 (+7500)... Golden State Warriors +3500 (+6500)... Dallas Mavericks +6000 (+10000).
The favorite in the West is the San Antonio Spurs as they are the #1 seed and should they make the finals they will also have home court advantage in that series as well. The Spurs are in the top 6 in the league in both scoring and points allowed, they are healthy and have a very experienced team, plus perhaps the best coach in the league in Greg Popovich. They wer the best team in the NBA this year and clearly have another title run in them.
Oklahoma City comes in as the 2nd seed in the West and are really looking like a team that just may have what it takes to take the West from the Spurs. The Thunder have dealt with injuries for most of the year, but now they are fully healthy and looking to make that run. They certainly have the talent with Durant and Westbrook, to go along with Serge Ibaka. The offense ranks 5th in scoring, while defense is 12th in points allowed and 3rd in defensive FG%. This team is younger and a bit more athletic than the Spurs and that may be enough here.
The Clippers are the sexy pick by many to walk away with the Western Conference Title. It may be justified, as they come in winners in 20 of their last 25 games, have the top ranked offense in the league, and can play defense as well as they rank 3rd in defensive FG% and 1st in 3pt defense. Oh year they also are fully healthy and have Doc Rivers calling the shots, who may jst be the 2nd best coach in the NBA, behind Popovich. Do not sleep on this team at all.
Rounding out the top 4 seeds is the Houston Rockets, who went 54-28 on the year, including a stellar 33-8 at home. Defense wins titles though and that may hold this team back as they rank 2nd in scoring, but 23th in points allowed. They haven't played all that great down the stretch, as they have won just 5 of their last 11 games and you want to be heading into the post-season with some momentum. With all the high powered offenses in the west It will be hard to see the Rockets making much noise.
Memphis is a team that plays defense, but they draw they have a tough draw in the opening round and that is the Oklahoma City Thunder, who are playing well and may be a bit pissed after getting ousted by the Grizzlies in last years playoffs.Still the Grizzlies do play the Kind of defense that is conducive of pulling surprises.
Golden State, Portland all had very good years, but I just don't see them making all that much hay vs the upper teams in the West.
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