The 2022-23 NBA season is almost here, which means it’s time to make some futures bets.
The Golden State Warriors are fresh off their sixth NBA championship and are looking to go back-to-back as they did in 2016-17 and 2017-18. But they’ll have company as league titans and upstarts seek to knock down the Dubs and chart their own historic path to the Larry O’Brien Trophy.
Here’s a look at the odds to make the playoffs. For NBA Finals odds, consult our page assessing each team’s chances of winning the title.
Odds To Make NBA Playoffs
All odds are current as of Monday, Oct. 3, at 10 a.m. ET and courtesy of FanDuel Sportsbook.
- Boston Celtics (-4500)
- Phoenix Suns (-4500)
- Milwaukee Bucks (-3000)
- Los Angeles Clippers (-2200)
- Brooklyn Nets (-1800)
- Golden State Warriors (-1800)
- Philadelphia 76ers (-1050)
- Denver Nuggets (-950)
- Miami Heat (-650)
- Memphis Grizzlies (-600)
- Dallas Mavericks (-520)
- Minnesota Timberwolves (-340)
- Cleveland Cavaliers (-310)
- Los Angeles Lakers (-245)
- Toronto Raptors (-230)
- Atlanta Hawks (-210)
- New Orleans Pelicans (-205)
- Chicago Bulls (-150)
- Portland Trail Blazers (+154)
- New York Knicks (+220)
- Charlotte Hornets (+250)
- Sacramento Kings (+360)
- Washington Wizards (+370)
- Detroit Pistons (+880)
- Orlando Magic (+1500)
- Utah Jazz (+1800)
- Houston Rockets N/A
- Oklahoma City Thunder N/A
- San Antonio Spurs N/A
The Celtics (-4500), the Eastern Conference champs from a season ago, are tied with the Suns, who finished with the best record in the NBA, in terms of shortest playoff odds. A bettor on each team to make the playoffs would win $0.02 profit per dollar wagered and need to bet $4,500 to win $100 in profit.
The Bucks (-3000), the 2021 champs, are next followed by the Clippers (-2200), Nets (-1800), and Warriors (-1800).
Brooklyn has endured a year’s worth of drama, including the Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving trade rumors, but returns with both stars on its roster plus an upgraded group of role players.
The Clippers should be on the short list of favorites to win both the Western Conference and NBA title, assuming stars Paul George and Kawhi Leonard can stay at full strength.
The 76ers (-1050) feature the two-headed monster of James Harden and Joel Embiid, who will have a full season to play together.
The Cavaliers (-310) narrowly missed the playoff field in 2022 but made an enormous splash by acquiring star guard Donovan Mitchell. The Hawks (-210), who got in as the eighth seed, also made a big trade for fledgling superstar Dejounte Murray from the Spurs.
Out West, Dallas (-520), which fell in the Western Conference Finals to Golden State, and Memphis (-600), which gave the Warriors their toughest playoff series of any West competitor, are expected to also challenge for the conference crown.
We all are morbidly curious to see what the Lakers (-245) have as well. The Timberwolves (-340) were the feel-good story of the NBA playoff field a year ago, going from (+610) preseason playoff odds to making the postseason for just the second time since 2004.
NBA Division Favorites
Atlantic: Boston Celtics (+115)
So much was made of the Nets’ drama-filled offseason, but the Celtics snuck in a scandal of their own at the end of the summer involving coach Ime Udoka, who was suspended for the entire season on account of an inappropriate relationship with a team staffer.
Boston, which reportedly sought Durant via trade, still has a dominant defense and roster full of stars, including Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, and 2022 defensive player of the year Marcus Smart, but will they rally around an interim coach?
Plus, Boston will not have big man Robert Williams for at least the season’s first month, and the division, which also features Brooklyn (+220) and Philadelphia (+300), is loaded, too.
Central: Milwaukee Bucks (-260)
The Bucks somehow manage to fly under the radar every season, but they should be considered a legitimate Eastern Conference and NBA title contender led by superstar forward and two-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo.
Milwaukee, which lost to the Celtics in seven games in the second round, had its season undone largely due to All-Star forward Khris Middleton‘s sprained MCL. He’s expected to return around the start of the regular season.
Still, Milwaukee should run away with the division.
Northwest: Denver Nuggets (-160)
The Timberwolves (+155) look like the only team that can challenge Denver for the division title since the Jazz (+24000) and Thunder (+24000) are both rebuilding and the Trail Blazers (+1000) are stuck in neutral. We’ll pick Denver thanks to reigning MVP Nikola Jokic‘s presence on the roster.
Pacific: Golden State Warriors (+190)
The Pacific is clearly the best division in basketball, with at least three legitimate title contenders (plus the Lakers, who fashion themselves as such every season). Still, the Dubs reign atop the Clippers (+195) and Suns (+200) for now, despite the fact Phoenix won the Pacific in 2022 and the Clippers are a chic pick to take home the title.
- Read up on the latest 2023 NBA MVP Odds and picks.
With mainstays Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green plus 2022 breakout star Jordan Poole, Golden State looks a little ahead of the pack. You can’t go wrong betting any of the top three, though, given the odds and each team’s credentials.
Southeast: Miami Heat (-180)
The Heat came within a game of the NBA Finals a season ago and return their full complement of stars, including Jimmy Butler, Kyle Lowry, and Bam Adebayo, plus reigning Sixth Man of the Year Tyler Herro.
A regression could be coming, so the Hawks (+180) would be the clear and obvious alternate pick if you aren’t feeling the Heat.
Southwest: Memphis Grizzlies (+105)
The Grizzlies were a great story in 2021-22, rising from the Western Conference play-in tournament in 2021 to the conference’s No. 2 seed.
Led by the NBA’s Most Improved Player in Ja Morant and budding stars like Dillon Brooks and Desmond Bane, the Grizz should continue their ascent as a Western Conference power, even if they finish lower than second in the West.
Dallas (+145) should challenge for the division title, and the Pelicans (+350) are also an intriguing pick given the odds.
Eastern Conference Favorites
Boston Celtics (+270)
Milwaukee Bucks (+320)
Brooklyn Nets (+350)
The Nets were the title favorites throughout the 2021-22 season yet were done in by Durant’s midseason knee injury, drama surrounding Irving’s availability due to his unwillingness to take the COVID-19 vaccine, and Harden’s eventual trade to Philadelphia. Brooklyn was unceremoniously swept by the Celtics in the first round.
There are questions about Durant’s happiness in Brooklyn, and Irving’s status is always in doubt, but the Nets lineup is loaded on paper, especially when you consider Ben Simmons, the Nets’ prime acquisition in the Harden trade, is reportedly healthy after missing the 2021-22 season due to a herniated disk in his back.
Philadelphia 76ers (+700)
The Sixers are a terrific bargain play since they feature a pair of superstars in Harden and Embiid, are well-coached by Doc Rivers, and added P.J. Tucker, who seems to win wherever he goes. They should be near the top of the Atlantic Division standings and among the short list of favorites to represent the East in the Finals.
Miami Heat (+900)
Western Conference Favorites
Golden State Warriors (+320)
Los Angeles Clippers (+330)
The Clippers look loaded, especially after adding John Wall in free agency to a rotation that includes Leonard, George, and Norman Powell, who should be among the favorites to win Sixth Man of the Year as long as everybody stays healthy.
LA’s health is a concern for sure, especially given that both Wall and Leonard missed all of last season due to injuries. But considering that the Clippers were 42-40 last season without Leonard (and only 31 games of George due to his elbow ailment), the sky is the limit if all parties are healthy and can coexist.
Phoenix Suns (+430)
Phoenix may be another year older and rife with some uncertainty given big man Deandre Ayton‘s apparent discontent. Plus, it has the added distraction of owner Robert Sarver’s suspension and team sale forced due to his reported racism and misogyny as team governor.
But the Suns had by far the NBA’s best record and are still just 18 months removed from the NBA Finals — lest we all forget they had a 2-0 lead over the Bucks in the series before falling in six games.
With Chris Paul and Devin Booker still suiting up every night, plus great depth and role players, Phoenix should remain in the mix among West powers, as long as it can block out the noise.
Denver Nuggets (+850)
Memphis Grizzlies (+1000)
Los Angeles Lakers (+1100)
We’d be remiss if we left the Lakers out among the West contenders, if for no other reason than their roster is loaded with star-caliber players. Sure, LeBron James is another year older, with a ton of miles on his odometer, and Russell Westbrook is still there despite questions about his fit. Anthony Davis is healthy, but we’ll see how long that lasts too.
The Lakers have regressed each of the past two seasons, missing the postseason in 2022, but are still only two years removed from their most recent title — which, admittedly, happened in the bubble. But the odds dictate they’re one of the six favorites to make the Finals, which is why they’re here.
Best NBA Playoff Bets
Atlanta Hawks to Win Southeast Division (+180)
The Heat were the East’s top seed a season ago, and if Jimmy Butler reads this, it’s only a matter of time before he puts it up in his locker and ensures Miami rolls to the division crown.
But Atlanta is only a year removed from an Eastern Conference Finals berth and added Murray to play Trae Young‘s sidekick. It shouldn’t take long for Murray to get acclimated to the Hawks, though even if it does, bigs like Clint Capela and John Collins are there to fill in with points and rebounds.
The Hawks are a great sleeper pick to come out of the East (+2500), if you’re daring enough take them to do that. But they should finish atop the division standings, narrowly ahead of Miami.
Sacramento Kings to Make the Playoffs (+360)
I love betting a longshot to make the playoffs before each NBA season — I’ll pat myself on the back for successfully pegging the Timberwolves at (+610) in September 2021 — and the Kings look like the club that could break through and reach the postseason field this year.
For starters, they should be well-coached by veteran Mike Brown and should have a full season of dominant big man Domantas Sabonis, who Sacramento acquired from the Indiana Pacers at the trade deadline a season ago.
De’Aaron Fox has led the team in scoring the past three seasons despite the fact he hasn’t played more than 59 games in any of those years due to shoulder and leg injuries, plus they added sharp-shooter Kevin Huerter from the Hawks, who should add to the club’s below-average outside shooting — the Kings shot 34.4% from deep in 2021-22.
The West is loaded, with nine teams in minus-money, so finding value isn’t easy. But if the Lakers are bad again, or there’s a catastrophic injury that dooms one of the 2022 playoff teams, the Kings would likely be the beneficiary and get back into the postseason for the first time since 2006.