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NBA betting tips: Clippers favourites for NBA glory

Main contenders for the 2020 NBA season

The NBA returns in October when the Toronto Raptors will start the defence of the title they won in such spectacular fashion against the Golden State Warriors in June.

Kawhi Leonard's impressive performances during the Raptors' 4-2 victory ensured he collected his second MVP Finals award but this season he lines up for the Los Angeles Clippers who have been installed as 10/3 favourites in the NBA odds to win the championship.

We'll provide NBA betting tips every week for what is expected to be an exciting season, so we've taken a look at some of the contenders for the new campaign.

Los Angeles Clippers

The Clippers have had a busy off-season, landing two elite players in the shape of Leonard and Paul George from Oklahoma City Thunder, and the pundits have been lining up to tip them for a maiden title.

Leonard won the championship with the San Antonio Spurs five years ago and is thrilled about the prospect of linking up with George.

He told ESPN: "This is probably going to be my first time playing with an elite player of his level. You know, around the same age as me, same talent. I'm excited."

The Clippers did not get past the first round of the play-offs last season but head the field in the NBA betting.

LA Lakers

LeBron James' groin injury he sustained at the end of the season meant the Lakers missed out on the play-offs but hopes are high they can win their first title since 2010 following the addition of Anthony Davis from the New Orleans Pelicans.

James played in only 55 games - the fewest in his 16-year career - but with Davis at his side the Lakers have possibly two of the greatest starting forwards in NBA history, small wonder they are second favourites in the NBA odds at 4/1, although the loss of DeMarcus Cousins through injury for most of the season is a major blow.

If James stays fit, the Lakers are going to be in the mix and they should play a key part in our NBA betting tips.

Milwaukee Bucks

The Bucks made the Eastern Conference finals last season and are 9/2 third favourites in the NBA bet tips to win their first title since their one and only success in 1971.

Reigning MVP player Giannis Antetokounmpo will be the man to watch once more but the re-signing of Khris Middleton and Brook Lopez has given them stability despite the loss of Malcolm Brogson and Nikola Mirotic.

Questions remain about their options at the offensive end but they should be contenders this season.

Philadelphia 76ers

The 76ers missed out on a place in the Eastern Conference finals in an incredible game 7. Kawhi Leonard scored from the corner on the buzzer to give the Raptors a 92-90 victory and settle a thrilling NBA match.

The ball bounced off the rim four times before dropping, sparking wild celebrations from players and fans alike.

Philadelphia's thin bench was exposed last season and with Jimmy Butler leaving to form his own team in Miami, the 76ers seem to have lost some star quality in their roster.

However, Al Horford has been signed from the Boston Celtics, so 8/1 in the NBA betting looks a fair price on a team that were seconds away from making the Conference finals.

Houston Rockets

The Rockets made the Conference semi-finals last season thanks to the exploits of James Harden and the 2018 MVP will be the focal point for Houston in the forthcoming campaign.

A reported row with Chris Paul saw the point guard shipped out to Oklahoma City Thunder who traded Russell Westbrook in return, but otherwise Houston have a similar line-up to last season and could launch another play-off challenge this time around.

Golden State Warriors

The Golden State Warriors reached the NBA finals for a fifth successive time but fell just short of a fourth title within that period.

This season, the Warriors seem to lack star quality with the exception of Steph Curry, with Kevin Durant heading to the Brooklyn Nets to team up with Kyrie Irving, and D'Angelo Russell heading to San Francisco in return.

Klay Thompson is expected to miss the whole of the regular season so those tempted by 12/1 as one of their NBA betting predictions should beware.

Brooklyn Nets

The Nets are one of the dark horses at 25/1 in the NBA odds after making a couple of key signings in Durant and Irving.

Durant is unlikely to make an impact this season after rupturing his Achilles during the NBA Finals with Golden State.

Much will depend on Irving and DeAndre Jordan, but retaining the likes of Spencer Dinwiddie, Caris LeVert, Jarrett Allen and Joe Harris is a big bonus and should ensure an excellent season from one of the new powerhouses in the NBA.

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Warren Barner
@warren_barner in Basketball