The NBA playoffs are the highlight of the basketball season, and 2022 looks like providing some excellent entertainment.
Which teams and players can we expect to see hitting the headlines over the next few weeks and how are the games shaping up for fans to enjoy? Let’s check who are the favorite teams according to the NBA betting odds and who is most likely to be the MVP.
The Basic Details
20 teams have made it through to the postseason stage, with four of them to be cut once the play-in tournament takes place. At the time of writing, the Brooklyn Nets and the Minnesota Timberwolves have won the early play-in games to secure their places in the playoffs.
The play-in games will be completed by April 15, and the following day sees the playoffs begin. In the Eastern Conference, we can see matchups like the second seeded Boston Celtics against the seventh seeded Brooklyn Nets. The Milwaukee Bucks are the thirds seeds and they face up to the Chicago Bulls, who are sixth seeds.
Also in the Eastern Conference, the Philadelphia 76ers and the Toronto Raptors meet, while the other game will feature top seeds the Miami Heat against an opponent that is yet to be decided.
Moving to the Western Conference, we can see that the reward for the Timberwolves getting through is a series of games against second seeds, the Memphis Grizzlies. The top seed in this side of the draw are the highly-rated Phoenix Suns, and they don’t yet know who they’ll be playing in the playoffs.
The Golden State Warrior are fifth seeds and they are drawn against the sixth seeds, who are the Denver Nuggets. Finally, the Dallas Mavericks and the Utah Jazz play the final set of games in this conference.
Who Is Expected to Win the Tournament?
This is the big question that every fan wants to know the answer to. For the moment, there are no outstanding favorites, but there are a few teams whose odds reflect their strong chances of ending the playoffs as champions. The odds show that several teams are in with the best chance of winning the championship this year, although none of the teams can be ruled out just now.
The Phoenix Suns are many people’s favorites, with odds of +260 or +275 available at the time of writing. They topped the Western Conference this season and they reached the Finals last year after a decade-long drought. They’ve never won an NBA championship and will be hoping that a roster including Chris Paul, Cam Johnson, and Devin Booker can drive them to glory this year.
Next on the list of odds are the Milwaukee Bucks, available at +500 just now. The Bucks won the playoffs last season, beating the Suns 4-2 to claim the prize. Their exciting roster includes power forward Giannis Antetokounmpo, who was MVP in last year’s finals. Khris Middleton is another of their key players to look out for once the action starts.
You can find the Brooklyn Nets at around +550 just now. They got to the conference semifinals last season and will be looking to improve on that this postseason. Their 115-108 win against the Cleveland Cavaliers got them through the play-in round safely this time around and they’ll be hoping that Kevin Durant and Bruce Brown Jr continue their good form to carry them as far as possible.
The Golden State Warriors are sitting at odds of about +800 in the buildup to the playoffs. They last won the championship in 2018 and have been working hard to try and get back to that level after some disappointing seasons. Steph Curry should be their key player, while Klay Thompson has recently returned from a long injury lay-.off.
Who Will Be the MVP?
The race to the be finals MVP should include some familiar names. Some of the top players in basketball get the chance to enhance their stellar reputations in the next few weeks, with Devin Booker of the Phoenix Suns on odds of around +480 to dominate the playoffs,
Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks is listed at +550 to win the MVP award again this year. Following him is another Suns player, Chris Paul, who is currently available at +650 on the main betting sites.
Kevin Durant is another star player who we expect to see in with a chance of being the best of the playoffs. The star man for the Brooklyn Net can be backed at +750. Steph Curry comes high on the list too, with odds of +900 right now.
It would be a surprise to see anyone else get named as MVP, but we know from experience that anything can happen once the actions gets underway and the best players show their worth.
The 2022 NBA playoffs look like they’re going to be terrific entertainment, so basketball fans can settle back and get ready for some top-class action coming up.