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Home - NBA Eastern Conference Predictions

  NBA Eastern Conference Predictions

miami heatThere's no doubt about it: the Miami Heat are the heavy favorites to defend their crown and win the Eastern Conference in the 2012/13 season.

LeBron James finally got the ring he deserved, combining with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh to bring the trophy back to South Beach.

But Pat Riley wasn't satisfied, addressing some roster needs and making a few nice moves over the offeseason. The highlight was the signing of free agent Ray Allen from the Boston Celtics. Allen is arguably the best shooter of all-time and should get plenty of open looks in Miami. It's a great fit.

The Heat also got Rashard Lewis, another veteran body who should get some minutes off the bench.

Miami is the clear front-runner, but Boston, Indiana and Chicago (assuming Derrick Rose returns and is fully functional) could challenge.

The Celtics lost Allen, but got a direct replacement in Jason Terry from the Dallas Mavericks. They will also have Avery Bradley, Jeff Green and Chris Wilcox back healthy and they also managed to grab Courtney Lee in free agency. With Kevin Garnett, Rajon Rondo and Paul Pierce still in Beantown, the Celtics should be Miami's main competitor this season and could be profitable in the NBA picks when it comes to sports betting.

Indiana has a nice mix of youth and experience, but lack the star power that carried the Heat to the title.  What will change from last season to make the Pacers a legitimate contender?

For Chicago, the season rests on Rose's health. He's expected to miss a large chunk of the regular season and there are questions on whether or not he'll ever be able to regain his full explosiveness.

If Rose makes a speedy and full recovery, the Bulls will be right there again. They have some great pieces like Joakim Noah, Carlos Boozer, Luol Deng and Rip Hamilton and should once again be one of the best defensive teams in the NBA.

Other teams that could make some noise in the East would be the revamped Brooklyn Nets, as well as the Atlanta Hawks, New York Knicks and Philadelphia 76ers.

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