2018 NBA Betting Preview: Northwest Division Win Totals

4 groups from the Northwest Division made the playoffs final season, and the fifth—the Nuggets—have been just one recreation away from the postseason. With excessive expectations throughout, how will Northwest squads fare towards their preseason win totals in 2018-19?

Utah Jazz

2017-18 Document: 48-34

2018 Win Complete: 48.5

Final 12 months, the Jazz rattled off 30 wins within the last 38 video games of the common season—which simply so occurred to be when Rudy Gobert returned from the knee harm that price him the earlier 15 video games. As quickly because the 2018 NBA Defensive Participant of the 12 months received again on the ground, all the things clicked for head coach Quin Snyder’s staff. Star rookie Donovan Mitchell continued to torch the remainder of the league, Ricky Rubio performed the perfect basketball of his life and each Derrick Favors and Joe Ingles performed their roles to perfection. With the staff wholesome heading into the season, it’s onerous to think about the Jazz not hitting the 50-win mark. Mitchell is barely going to get higher—search for him to turn out to be extra environment friendly in 12 months 2—first-round choose Grayson Allen is the proper tradition match and oft-injured Dante Exum might lastly have the ability to take some steps ahead after receiving a pleasant contract extension over the summer season. The Jazz even have various interchangeable reserve wings that they are often snug throwing on the ground. Within the period of position-less basketball, the worth of that may’t be ignored.

Guess: Over 48.5

Oklahoma Metropolis Thunder

2017-18 Document: 48-34

2018 Win Complete: 48.5

The Thunder are coping with some accidents coming into the season, as Russell Westbrook may miss just a few weeks after present process a minor knee surgical procedure and defensive specialist Andre Roberson suffered a setback in the course of the rehab for his knee harm. However the actuality is that after Westbrook is again, this staff goes to win loads of video games. A whole lot of that has to do with the unequalled depth that Westbrook brings to each recreation he performs. So long as he’s on the ground, his staff has an opportunity to beat virtually anybody. Plus, Oklahoma Metropolis received higher this offseason. In shedding Carmelo Anthony, the Thunder ought to expertise an addition by subtraction. Anthony was a sieve on the defensive finish and he wasn’t significantly better on offense, the place he struggled along with his jumper and settled for dangerous photographs too usually. After which there’s the truth that secondary star Paul George shall be much more snug this season. George is not going to be coping with fixed rumors about heading to Los Angeles, so he can lastly deal with solely basketball. An enormous 12 months ought to be anticipated out of each him and the all the time dependable Steven Adams. The Thunder additionally bolstered their bench over the summer season, buying Dennis Schroder—who ought to be extra targeted on each ends of the ground now that he’s taking part in for a aggressive staff—and Nerlens Noel, who has loads of incentive to have a productive 12 months after signing for a lot lower than he felt he was price within the offseason. Additionally, don’t be stunned if former 76er Timothé Luwawu-Cabarrot proves to be one other savvy Sam Presti pickup.

Guess: Below 48.5

Denver Nuggets

2017-18 Document: 46-36

2018 Win Complete: 47.5

The Nuggets have been a recreation away from making the playoffs final season, and are largely anticipated to interrupt by and make the postseason this 12 months. 4-time All-Star Paul Millsap is wholesome after lacking 44 video games final 12 months, and he ought to have the ability to present a ton of assistance on each ends of the ground this season. Denver additionally added Isaiah Thomas as some immediate offense off the bench—he’ll miss the early portion of the season as he recovers from hip surgical procedure, however he ought to be able to go earlier than lengthy. In the meantime, star Nikola Jokic is wanting like a dark-horse candidate to win the MVP award, and guards Jamal Murray and Gary Harris are able to take the following steps of their improvement. Harris is already one of many premier two-way gamers within the recreation, and Murray has the potential to be considered one of its greatest perimeter scorers. However although this staff is loaded with guys that may contribute, it’s onerous to think about them hitting the over this 12 months. The Western Convention is crammed with glorious groups and never everyone can win 48 video games. The Nuggets received’t essentially need to with a view to make the playoffs.

Guess: Below 47.5

Portland Path Blazers

2017-18 Document: 49-33

2018 Win Complete:

The Path Blazers left a foul style within the mouth of the general public by getting swept by the Pelicans in final 12 months’s playoffs, however individuals ought to strive to not put an excessive amount of weight into that one sequence. New Orleans might need uncovered Portland a bit, however that is nonetheless a staff that has received a median of 47.eight video games per 12 months over the previous 5 seasons. With star Damian Lillard coming off a profession 12 months and nonetheless very a lot in his prime, it’s onerous to see the Blazers not ending over .500—which might a minimum of assure a push. However Portland received’t be settling for simply that. This staff shall be trying to get proper again into the playoff image and, in an improved Western Convention, all it would take is a few inner enchancment from guys like C.J. McCollum—who’s already phenomenal offensively—and Jusuf Nurkic. Each gamers must make strides defensively if Portland goes to take one other step ahead, however they’re already ok to assist the Blazers hit the over on this disrespectful win complete. Head coach Terry Stotts has an abundance of helpful function gamers at his disposal in Al-Farouq Aminu, Seth Curry, Evan Turner and Mo Harkless. The one downside we are able to see right here is that that is too good to be true.

Guess: Over

Minnesota Timberwolves

2017-18 Document: 47-35

2018 Win Complete: 41.5

It’s no secret that Jimmy Butler needs out of Minnesota, and the Timberwolves can be silly to not meet his calls for. The staff can both let him stroll for nothing on the finish of the 12 months or flip him into some useful items now. And regardless of head coach Tom Thibodeau’s need to maintain Butler round, proprietor Glen Taylor goes to need to step in and transfer the four-time All-Star finally. With that being the case, it’s onerous to take the over on this staff. Whereas Karl-Anthony Cities is clearly a top-tier expertise on this league, he’s removed from prepared to steer his personal staff to the postseason. Cities was as soon as thought of a promising defensive prospect, however he has not developed on that finish of the ground in addition to many have hoped. Which may occur someday, however this staff isn’t going to get higher defensively if it trades probably the greatest wing defenders in basketball. And in Andrew Wiggins, the Timberwolves have yet one more prospect that isn’t fairly turning into what they’d hoped for—solely this case is much more excessive. If Maple Jordan doesn’t enhance considerably this season, then there’s likelihood that Minnesota wins one thing like 35 video games. You might argue that the Timberwolves shall be getting some good gamers again in a Butler deal, however the market has been comparatively dry to date. Total, the core of this staff isn’t the place it must be proper now. 

Guess: Below 41.5

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