Fans of the Houston Rockets are hoping that a coaching change will lead to a reversal in the team’s early-season misfortunes, which include seven straight-up losses in their first 11 contests that have sent their NBA championship odds plummeting to 28/1 after opening the season at 16/1.
Kevin McHale has been relieved of his duties following the team’s slow start, replaced on an interim basis by assistant coach JB Bickerstaff, who will try to shore up a defense that has surrendered at least 105 points per game in each of their first 11 contests.
Conversely, the youthful Minnesota Timberwolves have shown steady improvement on the NBA futures, jumping to 100/1 from 200/1 just three weeks on the strength of a respectable 5-6 start.
The Timberwolves finished dead last in the NBA last season, winning just 16 games during their 10th straight losing year, but have shifted their return to respectability into high gear, climbing to seventh in the NBA in team scoring with 103.1 points per game while tallying impressive upset victories over Chicago and Atlanta which briefly lifted their odds to 66/1.
After notching 12 straight wins out of the gate the Golden State Warriors have finally reclaimed top spot on the NBA championship odds, perched at 2/1.
The Warriors have been a scoring machine, cracking the 110-point mark in eight of their 12 outings, but have struggled to live up to big expectations at the sportsbooks, posting a streaky 7-5 ATS record.
The Cleveland Cavaliers have lost eight straight ATS but remain close on Golden State’s heels at 11/4 on the NBA title odds just ahead of the San Antonio Spurs, who have allowed an NBA-best 90.6 points per game over their first 10 and own 21/4 odds.
The Oklahoma City Thunder and Los Angeles Clippers round out the front of the pack, deadlocked at 10/1, well ahead of the Bulls at 20/1, and the Miami Heat, who sit alongside the Hawks at 25/1.
The Toronto Raptors hold steady at 33/1, followed by the Memphis Grizzlies at 40/1, the Washington Wizards and Boston Celtics at 50/1, and the Dallas Mavericks and Detroit Pistons at 66/1, while five teams join Minnesota at 100/1, including the Milwaukee Bucks, New Orleans Pelicans, New York Knicks, Utah Jazz, and Sacramento Kings.
Following a fast start, the Portland Trail Blazers have tumbled to 200/1, joining the Charlotte Hornets, but ahead of the Denver Nuggets, Orlando Magic, and Phoenix Suns at 300/1, the Los Angeles Lakers at 500/1, and the longshot Brooklyn Nets and Philadelphia 76ers, each with 1000/1 odds.