The Los Angeles Lakers won the 2020 NBA Championship, becoming the first champion to win the title in a “bubble.” The league hopes that the 2021 season can be played under more normal circumstances, and the Lakers are favored to repeat as champions.
According to FanDuel Sportsbook, the Los Angeles Lakers are the clear favorites to win the title, currently being offered at +360. The Los Angeles Clippers are second on the list, currently being offered at +450.
The Lakers and Clippers were expected to meet in the Western Conference Finals this season, but the Clippers were unable to get there. The Lakers had little trouble advancing through the playoffs, defeating the Miami Heat in six games in the NBA Finals to win the 17th title in franchise history.
The league has yet to announce when the 2021 regular season is set to begin, but it will likely be sometime around January 1. The hope is that each team will host games in their own arenas, and a bubble will not be needed again.
Clippers Have New Head Coach
The Los Angeles Clippers will enter the 2021 season with a new head coach after Doc Rivers was dismissed at the end of the 2020 season. Ty Lue will be taking control of the team entering 2021, and he has plenty of postseason experience.
Lue previously led the Cleveland Cavaliers to an NBA Championship in 2016, and he will be looking to dethrone LeBron James in 2021. The Clippers chose Lue due to his relationship with the current roster and his ability to inspire and lead his team.
The LA Clippers will have a number of difficult roster decisions to make this offseason as the franchise looks to reload heading into next season. Paul George and Kawhi Leonard are both expected to be back as leaders of the team, but the rest of the roster could be changed.
Davis Back For the Lakers
Los Angeles Lakers center Anthony Davis has declined his player option for next season but is expected to sign a new long-term deal to stay in Los Angeles. Davis averaged a double-double for the Lakers during the 2020 postseason and will likely become the face of the franchise after signing a new deal.
LeBron James will also be back for the Lakers, but this roster will look different heading into the 2021 season. Los Angeles is looking to add another seasoned veteran to help shoulder some of the load and take some pressure off of the two stars.
Bucks, Nets Favored in East
The Eastern Conference was won by the Miami Heat in 2020, but the conference is expected to be wide open again in 2021. Miami will return much of the same roster next season, but they are not the favorites heading into the 2021 season.
The Milwaukee Bucks are currently listed at +600 to win the NBA Finals in 2021, making them the favorites in the Eastern Conference. The Brooklyn Nets are listed at +1100, making them a strong contender to win the NBA title.