Sure, it’s still just the first week of August, and we don’t even know the NBA schedule yet, but that won’t stop us from looking ahead to the 2018-19 season.
The Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas on Sunday released its over/under win totals for the upcoming season (via manager Jeff Sherman), and you’ll unlikely be surprised to learn the forecast is for another season of disparity between the league’s haves and have-nots.
Of course, the Golden State Warriors lead the way. The defending champions’ over/under sits at 62.5 wins, one season after winning 58 games before a fairly dominant run to the title. Banking on a five-game improvement might seem like a lot, even for the Warriors, but it also would surprise no one to see them win 70 games, especially once they get DeMarcus Cousins in the fold.
The next closest team to the Warriors? That would be the Boston Celtics, who came within one game of the NBA Finals last season — without the services of Gordon Hayward or Kyrie Irving. In fact, the Celtics won 55 games last season despite Hayward going down in the first game of the season and Irving playing in only 60 games. Assuming full health for both, the Celtics would seem poised for an improvement, which might have you leaning toward the over. However, it’s worth considering the Celtics aren’t alone among the Eastern Conference elite, with the Philadelphia 76ers and Toronto Raptors both looking like 50-win teams.
And then there’s the LeBron James factor. The superstar forward is trying to return to the Los Angeles Lakers to glory, and the over/under certainly projects improvement in James’ first season in Hollywood. The Lakers won a modest 35 games last season, but the Westgate currently has their over/under set at 48.5 wins. Obviously, James will make that a much better team, but this is the first time in his career he’ll have to do battle as a member of the Western Conference where he’ll have to deal with the likes of Golden State, Houston and Utah all season.
Here’s the full list of over/unders from Sherman.
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