The 2012-2013 NBA season tips off this week, and there’s plenty of excitement to see how it will pan out. The bookmakers predict it will be a three-horse race. Reigning champions, the Miami Heat, are firm favorites for the title with odds at around $3.00, the Lakers are at $4.00 with some big new signings, and the only other team under 20/1 is last year’s runner-up the Oklahoma City Thunder, who are trading at around $5.00.
I think Miami will be very hard to beat this year. They will get better as the year goes on and if they make their way to the Eastern Conference Final then watch out! Miami players are pampered pooches so it may take them a while to shift into top gear. Should you wait for them to lose a few games before you place a bet, or should you jump on them now at $3.00? It’s a tough call, so I’m going to do both – put some money on them now and if they get off to a slow start, put some more on them later.
It’s always hard to predict how the Lakers will go because it all depends on how well the players gel. They always have the class to win the title and basketball fans will be dreaming of a Heat vs Lakers World Championship Series. Oklahoma should remain strong but I doubt they’ll rise to the level of the Heat.
It’s hard to see any other team being really competitive but there are a few with remote chances. I don’t like the Spurs or the Celtics as they have aging superstars who are past their best. The Bulls could be good if Rose is on the court for the whole year but he’s injury prone and always a risk to rely on. The Clippers, Nets, Pacers and Knicks are the best of the rest and they all have the potential to improve, so we could see them progressing deep into the playoffs if everything clicks.
To sum it all up, get on the Heat, take a risk by not backing the Lakers or the Thunder, and maybe throw a few dollars on a couple of long shots who have young lists that are improving.