January 4, 2022
The story in the NBA continues to surround the absence of players on a nightly basis due to being in Covid protocols as it looks like that will be a big factor throughout the season. Coaches are having to come up with new roster combinations on a nightly basis and some coaches, like Monty Williams of the Suns are missing games themselves.
Whoever wins it all this year will certainly have earned it with all that the players and coaching staff have gone through. That being said, we have had very few games get canceled and have what looks to be one of the most balanced NBA seasons in recent history. As we near the end of the football season casual basketball fans will likely be very entertained once full attention is turned to what is going on in the NBA. Head over to our NBA strategies page if you want to get caught up on all of the action.
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The Eastern Conference is the deepest it has ever been which should make for a great rest of the season and playoffs this year. In the West, the Suns and Warriors are still the favorites but both squads have dropped a couple of surprising games over the last couple of weeks since they have had players missing.
The Cavs and Grizzlies are two teams that have had great starts with young rosters that look like they will be forces in their respective conferences for years to come. Ja Morant is averaging 25 points a game, and all five Grizzlies starters are averaging double figures. The Cavs have an even deeper roster with 9 players averaging double figures led by Darius Garland with 19.5 ppg. The Cavs and Grizzlies don’t get much national attention playing in smaller markets so if you get a chance to watch them you won’t be disappointed.
The Warriors are back at the top of the Western Standings and it looks like the rich will get richer with Klay Thompson returning in the very near future. If Thompson is healthy the Warriors will be tough to beat in the West. The Mavericks have won four of their last five as Luka Doncic returned from a 10 game absence the other night. Luka got some heat earlier in the year for coming into the season a little overweight, and I suspect he will have a big second half of the year. No doubt the Mavs will be a dangerous team if they can squeak into the playoffs.
The Suns have lost three of their last five after having several key players and Head Coach Monty Williams miss time due to Covid protocols, but they should have back their entire roster for the matchup against the Clippers. The Clippers match up well with the Suns and provided a tough test for them in the playoffs last year. Without Kawhi Leonard, the Clippers look like a .500 team and could be headed for a play-in playoff spot unless they can turn things around quickly.
The Warriors and Nets are the heavy favorites in their respective conferences and if we end up getting those teams in the NBA finals this year we could be in for one of the most entertaining finals of all time. We still have a long way to go and it wouldn’t be surprising to see more twists and turns to this unpredictable season and have two unexpected teams in the Finals when all is said and done.