There is now less than a month to play in the NBA regular season, so the battle for playoff spots is only going to intensify over the next couple of weeks. That race looks a little different than what we are used to because of the play-in tournament. We will have more about that in a minute, as there is a lot of news to report this week. We are seeing teams making some final moves, while others are trying to get healthy before the playoffs actually begin. There is a lot of ground to cover here, so let’s get to the latest NBA news and rumors for this week for you to continue betting against their NBA odds.
2021 NBA Betting News & Rumors April 27th Edition
Speaking of the playoffs, this will be the first time that the play-in tournament will come into effect. There was a play-in game last season in the bubble, but this time, we will see 4 teams in each conference play for a chance to get the final 2 spots in the playoffs proper. The move was made to try and prevent teams from tanking, and to this point, it appears to be working. If the rumors are to be believed, the NBA is already sold on the idea an on the brink of making the play-in tournament a permanent part of the season.
Over the past couple of months, the LA Lakers have gone from the #1 team in the Western Conference and favorites to repeat as champions to a team sitting just above the play-in line. That’s what happens when your two best players go out with long-term injuries at the same time. Anthony Davis is making his way back, albeit by playing limited minutes, and it now appears as though LeBron James might be back as early as next week. It doesn’t leave a lot of time for them to shake off the rust and start winning again, but betting against LeBron might not be a good idea.
As the playoffs approach, the Philadelphia 76ers look like one of the teams ready to make some noise, despite the fact that they have finally relinquished the lead in the East to the Brooklyn Nets. You have to wonder what they would like today had they made a trade that almost happened at the deadline in 2020. At that time, they were chasing Chris Paul, with the word being that they tried again this offseason, only to see Paul move to the Phoenix Suns, making an immediate impact there.
It’s always fun to hear about trades that never quite happened, or about rumors of upcoming moves once we get past this season. One team that is already rumored to be ready to make some deals is the New York Knicks. They have avoided going the free agent route during their rebuild, but they are now at a point where those types of moves might make sense. There is no team hotter than the Knicks right now, and regardless of what they do in the postseason, MSG suddenly looks like a good destination again for free agents. Watch this space.