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NBA Betting: Futures would be wild following these deals

NBA Betting: Futures would be wild following these deals

NBA Betting: This season is special because, since September, a plethora of blockbuster NBA betting has emerged and altered the NBA landscape on several occasions. The outcome, in my opinion, alters the nature of the NBA betting deadline this season, which is set for February 8 at 3 p.m. ET.

More blockbusters are undoubtedly possible, but what I’m more interested in are smaller, fit-type transactions that have the potential to slightly alter the course of teams that are just a little or two away from making the kind of connection that will enable them to reach their goals. The NBA futures market this season is especially unique since there are no dominating clubs in either conference. Both the Celtics and the Nuggets give the sense that they won’t or cannot be challenged en route to the Finals, despite being properly so for most of the season.

And just behind them are, roughly speaking, ten to twelve teams that have a combination of MVP-caliber players, a track record of winning in the playoffs, and/or strong season-long play that might influence which teams finish last.

So let’s examine the intersection of these two occurrences today. Which clubs, if they can execute that perfect move before Thursday’s NBA betting deadline, have the ability to make a big impact in the NBA futures market?

We’ll look at a handful of those teams, determining the gaps they need to close and the kinds of NBA betting trades that may make them successful, and projecting how their chances for the future might shift if they close their deals.

NBA Betting: Futures would be wild following these deals

Check out the NBA betting trades in detail below:

New York Knicks

NBA Betting: Futures would be wild following these deals

Requirements: Playmaking wing, center

Trade with Hawks: Acquire Clint Capela, Dejounte Murray for a combination of draft picks, Mitchell Robinson, Evan Fournier, Malachi Flynn

Since adding legendary 3-and-D forward OG Anunoby to their roster, the Knicks have performed better than any other NBA club. Even if there are still concerns about whether they have the star power to compete, Jalen Brunson is still playing at a level that borders on MVP, and Julius Randle was having a season that was All-Star worthy prior to his injury. The Knicks have assembled a strong squad around the offensive playmaking of Randle and Brunson, complete with tough inside players in a defensive scheme designed by Tom Thibideau and aggressive 3-and-D perimeter players. Even with starter centre Mitchell Robinson (ankle) and centre Randle (shoulder) out due to injury, they remain the team that nobody wants to play for.

By acquiring players that complement their current style of play while also adding offensive skills, this deal would benefit the Knicks. Despite having established himself as a defender before joining the Hawks, Murray, a former All-Star lead guard, appears to have lost ground in that area. Currently, opponents can concentrate their whole defence on stopping Brunson, so the Knicks could really use his playmaking abilities, especially while Randle is out and even when he returns.

I saw the Lakers do precisely that this past weekend to defeat the Knicks in the fourth quarter, and going forward, other opponents could use a similar strategy in pivotal games. With Murray on the team, the Knicks would have another offensive source, which would discourage opponents from putting big shots on Brunson. Furthermore, there’s a good chance that the 27-year-old Murray will be able to rediscover his defensive abilities in the Thibideau defensive culture.

Without Robinson, the Knicks have performed admirably, with Precious Achiuwa and Isaiah Hartenstein filling in as the team’s nightly double-double threats in the middle. However, with a more refined offensive finishing technique, Capela might match their potential in terms of rebounds and defence. For most of his career, Capela has been a reliable pick-and-roll partner to James Harden and Trae Young, and Brunson excels at running the pick-and-roll.

With three All-Stars in their prime to lead the way and a stylistic fit that makes them a serious contender to win the Eastern Conference, this kind of move helps allay any remaining doubts about the star quality at the top of the Knicks.

You might also be interested in reading this: Most Unlikely NBA All-Star Picks Over the Past 20 Years

Oklahoma City Thunder

NBA Betting: Futures would be wild following these deals

Requirements: Playoffs tested/scoring floor general, center

Trade with Raptors: Acquire Dennis Schroder, Jakob Poeltl for draft picks, Davis Bertans, Aleksej Pokusevski, Tre Mann, Aaron Wiggins

The reasoning for this transaction is still sound; I pitched and described it last week. With their strong starting group, the Thunder have been in the running for the top slot in the Western Conference the whole season. They have a trio of skilled and dedicated wings, led by Jalen Williams, that makes them a formidable opponent on both offence and defence. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is up to second in the MVP odds from the point guard position, and rookie big man Chet Holmgren has been top-2 in the Rookie of the Year race and top-5 in the Defensive Player of the Year race throughout the season.

Their stars at both positions have a history of injuries, so they could use help getting through the NBA marathon with enough redundancy to make a run in the second marathon of the playoffs. However, they could use increases in quality depth at both point guard and centre.

Schroder is a great match for the Thunder organisation. He is a floor general with playoff experience who can score from beyond the area and manage the team. He can play in the backcourt with Josh Giddey and SGA because of his stature.

I witnessed the Thunder battle against the Raptors’ press during overtime over the weekend, forcing Luguentz Dort to lift the ball up and throw it over at a crucial moment. In those situations, Schroder is helpful, and his maturity helps steady the very inexperienced Thunder heading into the postseason.

Poeltl may be pricey because the Raptors only traded for him last season, but he is a starting calibre centre. Having said that, the Thunder have the most draft capital of any NBA club, and the Raptors are rebuilding. Poeltl adds a whole new depth to the Thunder.

He is a superbly-sized walking double-double. Even with his stellar play, Holmgren is still somewhat skinny for a centre and possesses the ability to play power forward as well. The Thunder would have more options to win if Poeltl was in the lineup since they could play bigger or smaller depending on who their opponents were.

Despite their odds, the Thunder are already a stronger competitor in the conference and the NBA. They would greatly increase their chances of winning with a move like this without creating the kind of huge splash that would probably change the odds.

Los Angeles Lakers

NBA Betting: Futures would be wild following these deals

Requirements: 3&D wing, center with size

Trade with Bulls: Acquire Alex Caruso, Andre Drummond for draft pick(s), Taurean Prince, Christian Wood, Max Christie

When it comes to the futures market, the Lakers are quite erratic. They were +4000 to win the West and +1800 to win the title on Monday. They are +1500 to win the chip and +1200 to win the West today following their third straight victory last night. They are a very popular franchise with two superstars—one of whom is considered a contender for the short list of all-time greats—and they have already won a championship with this core. Last season, they made an unexpected run to the Western Conference Finals thanks to astute deadline deals that balanced their team rather than brought back stars. This season, they could try something similar.

Caruso is just what the Lakers need right now—an aggressive, defensive-minded wing who can shoot over 40 per cent on a consistent basis from outside the arc. The Lakers should never have allowed him to depart. In addition to serving as the Lakers’ defensive captain on the perimeter, he could position himself next to D’Angelo Russell and Austin Reaves, providing LeBron and Anthony Davis with three superb shooters. Kendrick Perkins recently stated on First Take that he believes Caruso would benefit the Lakers in Purple and Gold.

The Lakers’ run ended in defeat in the Western Conference Final, however, because, like all of the Nuggets’ postseason opponents, they lacked a player large enough to halt Nikola Jokic. Although Drummond isn’t exactly a defensive stalwart, his large frame and strong rebounding ability might allow him to play with Davis in situations when the opposition’s front lines are strong. Although Davis is a superb centre, the Lakers need a guy with Drummond’s stature to provide them with starting minutes when facing some of the league’s larger centres.

At their current long odds, I would consider the Lakers valuable for both the Western Conference and the Championship, and I could picture them as an improved club from their last campaign with a trade like this.

Cleveland Cavaliers and Philadelphia 76ers

NBA Betting: Futures would be wild following these deals

The Cavaliers feature two elite players on the outside and two more elite players on the inside. The Cavs have won 14 of their past 15 games and are now atop the Central Division as the second seed in the Eastern Conference, despite the fact that those four players have missed 61 games in total throughout the team’s first 48 games. Although they shouldn’t be long shots, they are, which makes them excellent investments.

Of course, Joel Embiid’s healthy return in time for the playoffs is the only thing standing in the 76ers’ way. If he does, though, they would go into the postseason with a centre who was a strong favourite to earn MVP for the second straight season until an injury claimed his life. Additionally, Embiid would get the opportunity to start the postseason rested and healthy for the first time in his career. In that scenario, the 76ers would have just as much of a chance to emerge from the East as any other team, but with far greater odds, given the way Tyrese Maxey and the rest of the club’s supporting cast have performed.

Other teams and trades to watch

Considering that they have been fighting for the top spot in the Western standings the whole season, the Minnesota Timberwolves are still considered relatively long shots (+2000 chip, +800 West, +175 Northwest Division). Their squad could use another floor general/shot creator for late-game circumstances, even though Anthony Edwards is a superb player and they have excellent size in the frontcourt.

They have squandered many leads in late games because of stymied offence, but Edwards frequently finds himself shooting heroic shots, which he can make. When healthy, Mike Conley Jr. is helpful, but if wages could be matched, Chris Paul would be an ideal acquisition.

They may also be a logical second contender for Dejounte Murray, but they have no more draftable assets left after clearing out the closet to get Rudy Gobert. However, acquiring a playmaker during a crucial moment, especially one with playoff experience, may benefit the youthful Timberwolves.

A deal might put the Dallas Mavericks (+4000 chip, +1900 West, +245 Southwest) in strong contention as well. When healthy, they are headed by Kyrie Irving, one of the NBA’s best secondary offensive engines, and Luka Doncic, a perennial MVP contender.

Additionally, Sixth Man of the Year contender Tim Hardaway Jr. is providing them with terrific shooting and scoring, while rookie centre Dereck Lively II is a formidable inside presence.

The Mavericks could use more output from their power-forward position. The Pistons’ Bojan Bogdanovic and the Jazz’s John Collins are both excellent floor stretchers who might provide another level of difficulty to the Mavericks’ offensive scheme.

These are the NBA Betting trades that Futures would be wild following these deals. Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.

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