Los Angeles Franchises Set for Stellar 2019/20 NBA Season?
When it comes to previewing the upcoming season, one of the sharpest ways to analyze the various franchises and their chances of enjoying a successful campaign is by studying the odds supplied by the sportsbooks.
They employ super-advanced stats and data modelling to come up with who they think will sink and who will swim in the year ahead.
And ahead of the 2019/20 term, the bookies are in no doubt: this could be the year that the LA outfits shine.
Both the Clippers and the Lakers are well fancied to go well, despite the fact that the latter didn’t even make it to the playoffs last season and the former were well beaten by the Golden State Warriors in the first round.
The Lakers are one of the most well-decorated franchises in NBA history, but the Clippers? Well, there's plenty of tumbleweed rolling through their trophy cabinet.
So what have the sportsbooks seen in the LA teams that give them cause for confidence this season?
Clippers Invest Wisely in Hunt for Maiden NBA Crown
From a strategic perspective, it really does make little sense ‘tipping’ teams from the stacked Pacific Division, where the Lakers and the Clippers will lock horns with the Warriors, amongst other teams, and from which only two teams can realistically proceed.
The contrast between the two LA sides is stark, and they are almost complete opposites in terms of the stature of their rosters and the personnel at their disposal: the Lakers, splashing the cash on LeBron and co, are the Rolls Royce of NBA while the Clippers, with their rather more conservative budget, more like the Prius.
'LeBron James' - Luke Harold via (CC BY-SA 2.0)
The two teams’ back offices had a head-to-head clash for the signature of Kawhi Leonard, which the Clippers won, and the small forward truly is operating on a different level to anybody else in the NBA right now. He could prove to be the difference-maker.
The usually miserly Clippers have also spent big to tempt Paul George to the Staples Center, and when you add that duo to a roster of stars that also includes Pat Beverly, JaMychal Green and Lou Williams you can see why they are being touted for success in 2019/20.
Indeed, at betting odds of +450 the sportsbooks also believe Doc Rivers’ men are the most likely winners of the NBA Finals, and anyone who wants to follow that in can access free bets, bonuses and much more over here at Bonus.Net.NZ. It’s a great way to back the Clippers while mitigating your risk that Leonard and co aren’t able to replicate their best performances.
Lakers Shaping Up Nicely
It’s difficult to really get a handle on the Lakers in 2018/19: at times, they showed glimpses of genuine quality, as evidenced by their 10-4 record in November, but at other times they were derisory. A road record of 4-13 in the last three months of the regular season hardly helped.
Their marquee man LeBron James didn’t hit his normal heady heights, and Lakers fans will be hoping that a shift to point guard gets the best from him in 2019/20.
The GM, Rob Pelinka, has been busy in the off-season, bringing in the likes of Danny Green, Avery Bradley and Quinn Cook, and that trio bring with them exponential gains on the roster that failed to make the playoffs last term.
'Danny Green' by Chensiyuan (CC BY-SA 3.0)
Famed prediction site FiveThirtyEight gives the Lakers a 72% chance of reaching the playoffs, 20% of making the finals and 14% of winning the whole thing – only the 76ers and the Rockets are given more respect.
And so, on the face of it, there is a very strong chance that NBA glory will be heading to Los Angeles come the end of the season.