The Raptors won the Atlantic Division in each of the past three seasons but their chances at a 4-peat appear bleak after Serge Ibaka and Marc Gasol defected from The North and made their way to rival Los Angeles teams. Toronto will have to deal with a reloaded Atlantic Division in addition to their own losses (and their own relocation to Tampa Bay).
The Nets are back because Kevin Durant is back and the former MVP is surrounded by a deep, talented roster that GM Sean Marks meticulously constructed.
OKAY KD 🔨 pic.twitter.com/veerRsGDQ2
— ESPN (@espn) December 19, 2020
Atlantic Division Odds
|New York Knicks||+25000|
*Odds via PointsBet
The Celtics have won the Atlantic Division more than any other team, claiming the crown 22 times. Boston didn’t have a starry offseason but they made some nice additions, bringing in veterans Tristan Thompson and Jeff Teague. Both vets should contribute nicely but whether or not the franchise brings home Atlantic Division title No. 23 will come down to Jayson Tatum taking the next step in his progression to league stardom.
Philadelphia is coming off of a disappointing 2019-20 campaign but Daryl Morey’s arrival has lifted the franchise. The Sixers have the right kind of pieces around their two stars after adding Danny Green and Seth Curry via trades and Tyrese Maxey in the draft. Additionally, Dwight Howard‘s presence should help them in the race to win the division, as he’ll hold down the fort as the team’s agitator when Joel Embiid rests.
Dwight Howard relishes the opportunity to agitate opponents for the Sixers.
“…a big part for our team is to mentally destroy the other teams and it starts with Joel and myself.” pic.twitter.com/xbmBQlZWXD
— Chris Crouse 🏙 (@NBACrouse) December 19, 2020
Philadelphia hasn’t won the Atlantic Division since the 2000-01 season when Allen Iverson won MVP and dragged the franchise to the NBA Finals. If Philly is going to win the division during the 2020-21 season, it may take an MVP performance from Ben Simmons (or James Harden if that trade goes down).
And the Knicks. 2020 has been such a weird year. Wouldn’t it be fitting if the Knicks somehow bested the other four teams in the division for top spot honors? Yes, New York has looked impressive during the preseason but please, don’t use that $600 stimulus check to bet on the Knicks.