By Mark Strotman | | 15 mins
Nets, Lakers Lead Bucks In Early Look At 2022 NBA Title Odds
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The Milwaukee Bucks went almost 50 years in between NBA championships - but NBA betting markets don’t believe it’ll be nearly that long until the next one. Shortly after the Bucks hoisted the Larry O’Brien trophy following a Game 6 victory over the Phoenix Suns, NBA odds for the 2022 NBA championship were revealed - with Milwaukee once again near the top of the list.
The Bucks will enter the offseason at +900 with DraftKings to repeat, the third-best odds in the league. There’s certainly precedent for teams winning back-to-back titles, especially of late: Since 2009, the Los Angeles Lakers (2009 and 2010), Miami Heat (2012 and 2013), and Golden State Warriors (2017 and 2018) all have repeated as NBA champions.
Continuity was the recipe for success with those repeat champions - Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol for LA; LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami; Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant in Golden State - and continuity is exactly what the Bucks will have in the 2021-22 season.
Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton, and Jrue Holiday all return to form one of the top trios in the NBA, and a three-headed monster that dominates on both ends of the floor. Beyond those three, the Bucks will bring back starter Brook Lopez and core reserves Pat Connaughton and Donte DiVincenzo. They may need to replace P.J. Tucker and Bobby Portis, but it’s a sure bet that Milwaukee will be a hot destination for free agents in search of a title.
It’s also difficult to calculate just how much this championship run will help Milwaukee when it gets back to the postseason. The thought when the Bucks suffered crushing playoff losses in 2019 and 2020 was that they simply didn’t have the championship pedigree to help them get over the top.
Now they’ve been to the mountaintop, a journey that included coming back from multiple 2-0 deficits on their way to the title. This is now a team with boatloads of postseason experience, something that will matter greatly when facing teams like the Nets and Lakers.
Speaking of the Nets, they open the offseason as 2021-22 NBA title favorites at most of the top sportsbooks and betting sites. In Durant, James Harden and Kyrie Irving, they possess a formidable collection of talent, but as the 2020-21 season showed, it’s a long road to the championship.
Here’s a look at the top 10 contenders for the 2021-22 NBA title based on the current NBA futures market.
2021-22 NBA Title Odds
|Team||Odds To Win 2021-22 NBA Title|
|Golden State Warriors||+1300|
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Top Contenders For The 2021-22 NBA Title
The favorites on your sports betting app heading into the 2021-22 season tout the best three-headed monster in the league. Injuries ravaged Steve Nash’s group in Year 1, but it doesn’t get any better than Durant, Irving, and Harden at the top - and their supporting group is underrated.
Health will always be the most important factor for this group, but let’s not forget they had the reigning champion Bucks on the ropes with a 3-2 series lead before dropping Games 6 and 7 (without Irving and a 100% Harden).
Giannis may be the NBA’s new alpha, but as long as LeBron James is in the NBA, his team has a chance to win a title. Alongside Anthony Davis - who is just about to enter his prime - and an ownership that’s always willing to shake up a roster to win now, the Lakers absolutely will be in the title hunt in 2022. It wouldn’t be surprising if they made a run at a third star this offseason, too.
Of course the defending champs are going to be near the top of this list. They’ll bring back Giannis, Middleton, and Holiday while Lopez, Connaughton, and DiVincenzo round out a stellar supporting cast. You can bet veterans will be flocking to take discounts for a shot at a ring, so expect plenty of upgrades to the bench this summer.
Golden State Warriors
The last two seasons have been forgettable for the Warriors, who have missed the postseason after five straight trips to the Finals. But 2022 will include a healthy Steph Curry and Klay Thompson, and the team has a pair of Lottery picks (plus James Wiseman) to potentially dangle in a trade for a veteran star (or a move up in the draft). Curry, Thompson, Draymond Green, and a potential fourth impact player is more than enough for Golden State to put together a contender.
The core of Chris Paul, Devin Booker, and Deandre Ayton showed this season that they’re good enough to win a title. If they can get further improvement from a young core that also includes Mikal Bridges and Cam Johnson, they’ll be right back in the hunt in 2022. And with Arizona sports betting potentially live in time for the new NBA season, that's good news for Arizona-based Suns fans looking to back their team's future success.
The NBA’s best regular season team in 2020-21 may need to replace Mike Conley, but it will be in the mix with Donovan Mitchell, Rudy Gobert, and Bojan Bogdanovic leading the way.
Kawhi Leonard’s recovery from a partially torn ACL leaves more questions than answers for a Clippers team that still hasn’t met expectations. But if Leonard can get healthy by the postseason, the combination of him and Paul George is good enough to contend for a title.
The East’s top seed may look very different in 2022 if it moves on from Ben Simmons, but that’ll mean a significant return to put new pieces around All-NBA center Joel Embiid.
The reigning MVP Nikola Jokic is capable of putting together a postseason like Giannis just did, especially if and when they get Jamal Murray back from his ACL recovery.
Is Luka Doncic the next European star to take center stage in the NBA? The Mavericks could be aggressive this offseason to put more star power around him, and if they do, expect their odds to shorten.
Check out the best NBA picks out there, available from our team of handicappers at bookiesEdge.