New York Knicks UNDER 26.5 Wins (-110)
It’s become a somewhat regular occurrence where Knicks fans get excited about bringing in star power to Madison Square Garden and then end up with a sense of disappointment after plans A, B, and C all fail.
That being said, I can see how plan D actually doesn’t look too bad on paper. The Knicks added Marcus Morris, Bobby Portis, Elfrid Payton, and Julius Randle to the squad this season. Mitchell Robinson is going to be a star in the league in the near future, and there is still hope for R.J. Barrett and Kevin Knox.
However, there are a few crucial things Knicks fans aren’t considering. Firstly, even though this team will compete, they have a shooting problem. They signed Wayne Ellington, which will help and Morris is a strong three-point shooter, but outside of those two, they have very little shooting. Reggie Bullock is also now a Knick, but he’ll be out to start the year and is expected to miss some significant time after surgery on his back. Portis is a streaky shooter and right now the young guys are unproven.
If the Knicks are losing games in an improved Eastern Conference early in the season, they might end up shutting the whole thing down by the trade deadline. All of the guys they signed are on short-term deals, so if things go south in a hurry, this team will be tanking before the month of March. That could make the under an attractive proposition.
Cleveland Cavaliers UNDER 24.5 Wins (-125)
Speaking of tanking, the Cleveland Cavaliers, everyone! The Cavs are in a rough spot. They are still dealing with the fallout of LeBron James leaving a year ago and they have a lot of reason to lose and lose a lot.
There is also the issue of them being in cap Hell right now. The Cavs have a $130 million payroll entering next season, so they’ll be paying out the ass in luxury tax while not even sniffing the playoffs.
The best course of action for them is to sell as much off as they can and tank for the number one overall pick from the start of the season. There will be nights and against certain teams where they are competitive, especially if Kevin Love comes back to his old self.
However, they could trade him and Tristan Thompson at some point and just commit to playing their young guys as much as possible. If that happens, I’ll be surprised if Cleveland wins 20 games next season.
Memphis Grizzlies OVER 27.5 Wins (-110)
The Memphis Grizzlies were looking at a hard and long rebuild once they traded Marc Gasol and Mike Conley. However, landing the number two overall pick and Ja Morant might end up being the most consequential draft pick of 2019.
Along with Jaren Jackson Jr. and an underrated supporting cast, this young team is going places. Granted, they play in the Western Conference and are probably one of the youngest teams in the league, but they also have a ton of upside.
If Morant is a star in the making and puts up a Rookie of the Year performance, along with Jackson dropping 20 and 10 each night, I see this team getting far more than 27 wins. They got 33 last season after everything that happened, and with a big payroll this season, Memphis is going for the playoffs.
All this time and I still haven’t mentioned Brandon Clarke, who may be another key piece in any run the Grizzlies make to the playoffs. Don’t sleep on Memphis.