The 2019-2020 NBA season officially gets underway on Tuesday, October 22nd. It’s been another wild season of player movement, and the Southeast Division might just be looking to survive this season.
SB Nation provided a full preview of the coming season, and that included each of the experts at SB Nation’s team sites offering projections for the 2019-2020 season. We’ll be breaking down each division with their win total projections compared to the preseason odds.
Miami Heat: 45-37 — Hot Hot Hoops
The Heat as constructed could defy expectations, one way or another, and the oddsmakers have the over/under at a reasonable 43.5 games won. It could all come together nicely and be a dangerous first round opponent no elite East team wants to face. Or it could flounder and lose inexplicably in winnable games, or at home, like they did a lot last season. If they can put that behind them with Butler now leading the way and be able to reverse their recent misfortunes, they have a realistic shot at surpassing that win total.
Orlando Magic: 45-37 — Orlando Pinstriped Post
Vegas’ over/under of 40.5 for the Magic is a bit low. This is a team that, across the second half of last season, was the best defense in the league, and brought back their entire core. In year two under Steve Clifford, and with the continuity they haven’t had between coach and roster in recent years, they’re likely to take a step forward from where they finished at 42-40 last season. I think they take a small step forward this season and finish 45-37.
Atlanta Hawks: 34-48 — Peach Tree Hoops
Expectations are all over the place for this Hawks team, with optimists seeing the potential for playoff contention and skeptics wondering if the squad will improve at all from last year’s 29-win benchmark. It is probably safest to split the difference, with the widespread belief that Young, Collins and Huerter will make real strides to off-set the potential downgrades in the supporting cast after the loss of Dewayne Dedmon and others. Ultimately, let’s go with a slight lean to the “over” on the Vegas win total of 33.5, knowing full well that there is more upside if things come together.
Washington Wizards: 25-57 — Bullets Forever
Vegas predicts that the Wizards will win 27.5 games this season. That is likely assuming that there are no major personnel changes on the roster such as a trade or an additional major injury on the roster. The Wizards will be balancing the need to develop younger players like Hachimura, Schofield and Wagner against the competing need to have a strong product on the floor with Beal as the centerpiece. Ultimately, I think the Wizards will be under the line, but by just a little bit. They will finish 25-57 in the 2018-19 NBA season.
Charlotte Hornets: 20-62 — At The Hive
The team’s over/under for the 2019-20 season is 23.5, and that seems like a reasonable projection for this roster. The team will probably finish the season in that ballpark, but if I had to guess, I’d take the under. The Hornets will probably finish with a similar record to last season’s cellar dwellers.
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