2022 NBA Eastern Conference Futures: Nets, Bucks, Heat Remain Favorites

The Brooklyn Nets were the pre-season favorites to end the 2021-22 at the top of the NBA’s Eastern Conference. As the calendar turns from 2021 to 2022, the Brooklyn club is still at the top of the board, but the No. 2 rated Milwaukee Bucks have gained ground on the Nets. Meanwhile, the Miami Heat holds steady at No. 3. One team who has dropped down the board after a hot start to the season is the Washington Wizards.

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2022 NBA Eastern Conference Odds

Brooklyn Nets+165+140+165+135+135
Milwaukee Bucks+375+300+375+325+290
Miami Heat+500+500+500+550+460
Philadelphia 76ers+700+750+700+850+720
Chicago Bulls+1100+1100+1100+1000+1075
Atlanta Hawks+2000+5000+2000+2000+2800
Cleveland Cavailiers+2200+3500+2200+2200+2100
Boston Celtics+2800+3000+2800+2800+2200
Charlotte Hornets+4000+4000+4000+5000+3300
Toronto Raptors+5000+8000+5000+5000+3400
New York Knicks+6600+10000+6600+6600+4000
Washington Wizards+15000+20000+15000+8000+7000
Indiana Pacers+30000+100000+30000+25000+11000
Detroit Pistons+20000+100000+20000+125000+65000
Orlando Magic+20000+100000+20000+100000+80000

Nets remain favorites

The Brooklyn Nets went 8-4 during the month of December, opening the month with a win over the Timberwolves and closing the year with a loss to the Philadelphia 76ers. Despite a less than stellar record and the fact that the Nets fell to the No. 2 spot in the Eastern Conference standings behind the Chicago Bulls, Brooklyn is still the favorite to end the season at the top of the conference.

One thing that worries team leader Kevin Durant is the Nets tendency to let up against teams the club takes for granted. For example, the Nets dropped a 120-116 game to the LA Clippers on January 1. The losses to the 76ers and Clippers marked the first time this season the Nets lost back-to-back games. The Nets are 23-11on the season.

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Bulls take the top spot

The Chicago Bulls had a productive last month of 2021. Chicago went 9-2 in December and finished the month on a seven-game winning streak. The team then opened 2022 with an eighth straight win, defeating the Washington Wizards 120-119.

Despite the Bulls strong December, the team remains outside the top-three favorites to win the 2021-22 NBA Eastern Conference. The Bulls jumped from +1600 to +1000 in the odds and should make a jump into the top three if they remain hot. Chicago has not lost more than two games in a row all season and the club’s leading scorer, DeMar DeRozan is the number five scorer in the NBA with an average of 26.8 points per game.

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Watch the Bucks

The 2021 NBA champion Milwaukee Bucks will go as far as two-time NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo takes them and if Antetokounmpo’s play is any indication, the team could go very far. Milwaukee ended 2021 on a five-game winning streak. The club then opened 2022 with a 136-113 win over the New Orleans Pelicans. In that game, Antetokounmpo had a triple-double in that game. He scored 35 points, had 16 rebounds and added 10 assists. It was Antetokounmpo’s second triple-double of this season.

Antetokounmpo missed five games because of COVID-19 protocols. Since his return, Antetokounmpo has averaged 33 points, 11.5 rebounds and 6.5 assists.

A healthy Antetokounmpo, who is second in the NBA in scoring, is a dangerous player.

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Wizards tumble

The Washington Wizards were one of the hottest teams to open the 2021-22 NBA season. The Wizards cooled off in a big way in December. Washington went 5-9 in December and dropped from +8000 to +10000 in the odds to win the Eastern Conference.

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Trent Reinsmith

Trent covers UFC and MMA for MTS. He has written for USA Today Sports, Vice, Bloody Elbow, Fight! Magazine, UFC 360, and Narratively among others. He has been involved with MMA since he and some friends threw some money together to purchase the pay-per-view of UFC 1, and the rest is history.

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