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2014 – 2015 NBA Futures

NBA futures betting is a perfect way for fans and sharp gamblers to turn their preseason research into real cash at the end of the season. Odds on NBA divisional, conference and overall outcomes vary from sportsbook to sportsbook, so we encourage anyone looking into futures betting to shop around for the best numbers before making a deposit.

NBA Finals Futures Odds and Predictions

Can King James do it again? That’s the question NBA finals futures bettors should be asking themselves. Oddmsmakers are putting their chances at 9/4 and that’s not too out of line. The Miami Heat (46-20, 32-34 ATS, 5/8) are getting a handle on how best to contain their massive star power and could easily go back to the Finals.

We’re not as certain about the LA Lakers’ (11/5) chances. Yes, they’ve got Steve Nash and plenty of other heavy hitters, but it’s still Kobe Bryant’s team. Bryant is a well known jerk who doesn’t play nicely with others. That makes betting on his chances of getting along with a new star sound like a real suckers’ bet.

An Oklahoma City Thunder title would pay out at 9/2 if it came in and that’s a relatively safe bet. OKC is steadily growing as a franchise and that maturity will pay off year in and year out.

We like any one of these teams, but are leaning towards the stability of the Thunder over the ego-heavy Heat.

NBA Eastern Conference Futures Preview and Predictions

The NBA Eastern Conference is home to Lebron James and the 2011 championship Miami Heat and the biggest threat to their chances of a repeat, the Boston Celtics (39-27, 34-31-1 ATS, 8/1).

Last year the two teams duked it out in one of the better recent playoff series we can remember and we expect both teams to be back there again next spring. Most sportsbooks have the Heat between 5/8 and 4/7 to win the Eastern Conference again and the Celtics at 8/1.

The Chicago Bulls (50-16, 38-27-1 ATS) finished out 2012 with one of the best records in the entire NBA but just couldn’t seal the deal. This season they’re getting around 6/1 from most online sports betting shops, despite the likelihood of Derrick Rose missing out on some early games.

Kevin Garnett is confident that he and the aging Celtics have a good shot at getting in the Finals and we agree with him. But he’ll have his work cut out getting past the Heat, New York Knicks (36-30, 36-30 ATS, 12/1) and the potentially resurgent Brooklyn Nets (22-44, 27-38-1 ATS, 30/1).

Still, we like his chances.

NBA Atlantic Conference Futures Odds and Picks

Despite the presence of the Toronto Raptors (23-43, 27-38-1 ATS) and Brooklyn Nets, the Atlantic Conference is one of the toughest in the NBA.

The New York Knicks had a fantastic 2011 with a Jeremy Lin fueled run, but he’s gone and so is much of the teams’ magic. New York is pretty dysfunctional and stars like Carmello Anthony have shown limited value as team leaders.

The Philadelphia 76ers (35-31, 34-32 ATS) are bringing back just five members from last year’s squad and could be in for a rough start. They’re a very young team and will definitely be a contender, but not this year.

We’re playing it safe sticking with the Celtics.

NBA Central Futures Picks

In all likelihood, the NBA Central Conference race is going to come down to another horse race between the Chicago Bulls and Indiana Pacers (42-24, 32-34 ATS). We mentioned that the Bulls will be without Rose for at least part of the season and that could be a major impediment to their chances.

The Pacers surprised a lot of folks last year and made some smart pickups grabbing D.J. Augustin, Gerald Green and Ian Mahinmi in the off-season. They’re the team to beat in the Central. The Milwaukee Bucks (31-35, 29-37 ATS), Detroit Pistons (25-41, 32-33-1 ATS) and Cleveland Cavaliers (21-45, 31-35 ATS) will have to wait for next year.

NBA Southeast Futures Picks

Basketball’s best and worst reside in the closely watched Southeast and futures bettors know this one is Miami’s to lose. King James, Duane Wade and the Miami all-stars have no reason to lose out in their own division.

Their biggest threat comes from the Atlanta Hawks (40-26, 36-27-3 ATS) but that Joe Johnson trade seriously changed the chemistry there. Josh Smith and Al Horford will have to really step up as leaders if these guys hope to compete against Miami. That give the Orlando Magic (37-29, 34-32 ATS) a much better shot.

As for the Washington Wizards (20-46, 29-36-1 ATS) and Charlotte Bobcats (7-59, 22-43-1 ATS)? Not in the running this year.

NBA Western Conference Futures Odds and Picks

In 2012 the Oklahoma City Thunder (47-19, 35-31 ATS) and LA Lakers (41-25, 27-39 ATS) duked it out for Western Conference supremacy, but both had plenty of competition.

Vegas and offshore sportsbooks are giving the Lakers 6/5 and the Thunder 9/4 at grabbing a piece of the conference championship. LA is always a contender, and the off-season addition of Steve Nash could boost their chances even further. OKC has a good shot thanks to their steady improvement and off-season acquisitions like Perry Jones III.

Futures bettors who like longer odds might want to look at the LA Clippers (40-26, 33-32-1 ATS). They gave the Lakers a serious run last season and at 15/1 could provide a nice payout if you’re willing to take a risk.

We think LA has too much star power and will deteriorate due to in-fighting as the season progresses. So watch for a repeat from the Thunder.

Northwest Divsion Futures Picks and Odds

The Denver Nuggets (38-28, 36-30 ATS) surprised a lot of NBA bettors with a decent playoff run last season and could do well again this year. They’re not quite playing at the Thunders’ level but will definitely be competitive.

Still, it’s tough to pick anyone but Oklahoma City in this conference.

NBA Pacific Division Futures Odds and Picks

It’s going to be another horse race between the Clippers and Lakers for the Pacific and Kobe and crew have the edge.

The Phoenix Suns (33-33, 34-32 ATS) will be feeling the loss of Nash enough that they’re not much to worry about. While some teams thrive after losing a star (see: Denver post-Carmello), Nash was hardly a disruptive force.

We’re not seeing much hope for the Golden State Warriors (23-43, 36-29-1 ATS) or Sacramento Kings (22-44, 29-37 ATS) either.

For better or worse, this is LA Lakers’ division to lose.

NBA Southwest Division Futures Odds and Picks

San Antonio (50-16, 42-20-4 ATS) let the big prize slip away from them last season and will be chomping at the bit for another shot this year. With solid veterans like Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker on the roster, this is their division to lose.

Dirk Nowitzki is starting to head towards the sunset and with him go much of the Dallas Mavericks’ (36–30, 32-34 ATS) chances at taking the Southwest. There’s just too many challenges for these guys to compete against the more aggressive Spurs.

Memphis (41-25, 29-37 ATS) could be competitive this season, but they’ve got a lot of development to do before they’re a serious contender.

The Houston Rockets (34-32, 32-33-1 ATS) and New Orleans Hornets (21-45, 35-31 ATS) are going to have to do a lot of improving if they’re hoping to give San Antonio a run.