2023 NBA playoffs odds and predictions: Who are the favorites to win the championship?
Though they are favored to win the 2023 NBA title, there is a catch where the team from Milwaukee is concerned and we’re going to take a look at what it is.
Just two years ago the Milwaukee Bucks won an NBA title, meaning they now have an opportunity to win two in three years. The problem for Giannis and Co., however, is the health of the roster which could be a major hindrance going forward.
The Milwaukee Bucks are favored to win the 2023 NBA title
With a 58-24 record, the Milwaukee Bucks ended the regular season with the league’s best overall record and the East’s No. 1 seed, which of course means they will face the lowest-seed winner of the East’s Play-In Tournament. As one can imagine, that in itself increases their chances of advancing and that’s before we mention their roster which is full of depth and experience. To be clear, the Bucks are currently the odds on favorites to win the whole ‘shabang’ at +275. Behind them are the Boston Celtics at +300, the Phoenix Suns at +450 and the Denver Nuggets at +800. Yet, as is the case with any sport, nothing is guaranteed and even less so when we start to consider the issue that the Bucks have struggled with.
What’s the catch with the Bucks?
Here’s the thing: When healthy, the Bucks are probably as good as it gets in the NBA, which is to say it’s highly unlikely that any team can deal with them across a seven-game series. Here’s the other thing: They’re not healthy. Quite frankly, Milwaukee comes into the playoffs in not the best shape to say the least. Firstly, we’ve got Pat Connaughton and Grayson Allen, both of whom are struggling with ankle problems and are currently listed as ‘out.’ That’s to say, the roster depth we mentioned earlier, is suddenly less so.
Then, there is the major issue which is the absence of Khris Middleton. While it’s true that recent reports have indicated that his MRI - conducted last week - came back clean, there has been no definitive word on if/when Middleton will return. Needless to say, that is a big void to fill because as good as the Bucks are, against better teams like the Celtics or 76ers for example, Middleton’s contribution will be sorely missed. Consider for a moment the manner in which they lost the Eastern Conference finals last year against Boston. Even though Giannis averaged 33.9 points and 14.7 rebounds per game, in a series that went the distance to seven games, it was clear that without Middleton they weren’t going to get over the line. Ultimately, as much as they are favored, there chances will hinge on how healthy the roster is. Watch this space.