Western Conference Predictions
Will the Golden State Warriors find a way to win another Western Conference title, or are there teams that can unseat them this season? Here’s our NBA Predictions for the West.
Golden State Warriors
Not surprisingly, oddsmakers at YouWager have the Warriors as the clear favorite to win the West with -220 odds. The three-time defending champions are ½ a game out of first right now at 44-14, but they seem to be conserving their energy and health for the playoffs. The Warriors still average the most points in the NBA and have the best road record in the league. Until someone actually beats them in a 7-game-series, it’s hard to trust that Golden State won’t win the West again. However, motivation is probably lower for these four stars than ever. All have won NBA titles and all have grinded through injuries and long seasons in recent years.
If anyone is going to stop the Warriors, the Rockets seem to be the likely candidate. Listed with +200 odds right now, the Rockets have the offense (114.1 ppg) to compete with Golden State and Houston is actually allowing less defensively than Golden State. The Rockets have the best home record in the NBA, so winning the top seed will be crucial. They are already 2-1 vs. the Warriors this season and have plenty of motivation. James Harden fizzled out in the playoffs last year and should be hungry to redeem himself. His accompanying talent is stronger than ever and filled with players also looking to claim their first NBA title, like Chris Paul.
San Antonio Spurs
The Spurs aren’t getting much respect in the conference race, as oddsmakers have them at +2000 to win. San Antonio is still the last team other than Golden State to win the West and the Spurs looked to be a problem for the Warriors in last year’s postseason before Kawhi Leonard was injured. Leonard has been battling injuries all season but is expected to return before the postseason. Without him, San Antonio has still managed to post a 35-24 record to sit at third in the West. They also still have a defense that is allowing just 98.5 points per game. As other Spurs develop their game, it could make the team even stronger with the addition of Leonard before the playoffs. Don’t sleep on San Antonio with one of the best coaches in the league.