The Phoenix Suns have not been perfect in the new year, but they have played extremely well since the calendar year flipped. Phoenix is on a 7-1 run in 2022. That record has launched them into first place in the NBA. The team sits three games ahead of their Western Conference rivals, the Golden State Warriors in the overall standings. Golden State has a losing record in 2022. The team has gone 4-5 since the new year.
Despite their performance in the 2021-22 NBA season, the Suns, who are 31-12, are not among the top three teams favored to win the 2021-22 NBA Championship. Phoenix, who were second to the Milwaukee Bucks in 2021, trail the Brooklyn Nets, Golden State and Milwaukee in the odds to the 2022 title.
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2022 NBA Championship Odds
Brooklyn remains at the top
The Brooklyn Nets opened the 2021-22 NBA season as the +225 favorites to win the 2022 NBA title. The team has lost some ground since those opening odds. However, the Brooklyn club remains at the top of the list to win the NBA Championship at the end of the season.
Brooklyn is in third place in the Eastern Conference. The team is half a game behind the Chicago Bulls and the Miami Heat in the East. Despite their positions in the standings, Chicago and Miami are longshots compared to Brooklyn.
Smooth operator@JHarden13 #NBAAllStar pic.twitter.com/JXet0WueOy
— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) January 17, 2022
The Nets could slip in the coming weeks. Kevin Durant, who leads the team — and the NBA — in scoring, sprained his MCL on Saturday and it looks like he will miss 4-6 weeks. Durant’s presence is going to be missed and his absence could cost the team some ground in the hunt for the title.
Golden State stays close
The Golden State Warriors were hopeful the return of Klay Thompson would keep them on the winning side of the equation. It hasn’t. Golden State was one of the best teams in the league to start the season, but things have gotten a bit rocky as of late. Some of that is the team — and Thompson — getting accustomed to each other. He missed more than two years due to injuries. Some of that might be because the team has been without Draymond Green for the past four games, where they went 1-3.
Fact: #AndrewWiggins has scored in double figures every game this season
Also a fact: You should retweet this and vote Wiggs for #NBAAllStar pic.twitter.com/EQb73XiMHq
— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) January 17, 2022
Things to keep an eye on in Golden State are Thompson getting back to speed, the team’s play without Green – he is going to miss two more weeks with a calf injury — and the scoring of Stephen Curry, which has been down over the past two weeks.
Phoenix remains hot
The Phoenix Suns have lost back-to-back games twice this season. The first time that happened was in games three and four of the season, and then on December 25 and 27. The team is 34-9 on the season, yet they are not among the top teams in the odds for the 2022 NBA title. One reason for that might be that two of those nine setbacks came against the team’s divisional rival, the Golden State Warriors. They are 1-2 against the Warriors on the season. Another reason might be that the team tends to rely on Devin Booker for its scoring. Booker averages 24.6 points per game. The second highest scoring player for the Suns is Deandre Ayton. He scores 16.8 points per game.
Certified walking bucket 🪣
🎥 Every basket of 48@DevinBook x #NBAAllStar pic.twitter.com/jbVvRpFr7m
— Phoenix Suns (@Suns) January 18, 2022
On the positive side of the equation, the Suns were without Booker for seven games so far this season and went 5-2 in his absence. So, the team knows how to play well as a unit even without its star.
I’m sticking with my pick of the Nets in the East and the Warriors from the West. However, that could change in the coming month with Brooklyn losing Durant and the Warriors struggling to win games.
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