San Antonio will host the struggling Knicks in their first game of the new NBA season.
After Kawhi Leonard left in the last offseason, it appeared as though San Antonio’s excellence was finally coming to an end. But Gregg Popovich managed to turn the situation into another good season. They matched an NBA record for most consecutive playoff appearance as they reached the postseason for the 22nd straight season. In the first round, they faced the mighty Nuggets and almost caused a mighty upset. San Antonio were defeated 4-3 despite some heroic performances along the way.
Derrick White starred in the playoffs after quietly impressing in the regular season. The Spurs were without Dejounte Murray for the season due to a torn ACL, but Popovich managed to find a solution as always. Murray is back for this season, and he will hope to build on the promise from two seasons ago. Along with Murray, the onus will be on DeMar DeRozan to deliver in his second year with the franchise. He averaged 21.2 points last season after being traded by the Raptors.
LaMarcus Aldridge also had a solid year, and he scored 21.3 points per game. Jakob Poeltl should also make the starting lineup as he attempts to make a jump from last year. The Spurs have a solid bench consisting of Patty Mills, DeMarre Carroll, and Rudy Gay. Mills had a great World Cup with Australia, and he will provide contributions off the bench.
The Knicks entered the offseason with great hope and expectation after a terrible regular season. They tied the franchise record for the worst record in their history, winning only 17 games. The likes of Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant, and Zion Williamson were touted as potential recruits in the summer. Neither one of them arrived in New York as it turned out. Furthermore, Durant and Irving’s decision to go to Brooklyn made it even more painful.
New York had the third pick in the draft, and they went for RJ Barrett from Duke University. In free agency, they could land Julius Randle and Marcus Morris, who are both useful players to have. They lack the star quality of a Kevin Durant, but should certainly provide an improvement on last year.
Their bench looks decent as well, as Kevin Knox will hope to build on a solid rookie year. Elfrid Payton and Bobby Portis are there as well. The Knicks fans will hope that the host of young players will develop useful chemistry. New York have not made the playoffs in six years, which is the longest current drought in the Eastern Conference. It seems likely that the dry run will continue.
San Antonio Spurs vs New York Knicks Betting Tips
The Spurs will be the overwhelming favorites to get a win to kick off their season. The Knicks were woeful last season, and not much improvement should happen immediately. Both teams should score under 226.5 points in total, and the Spurs should win comfortably.