Best Under Bets to Target for NBA Team Win Totals in 2021-22

| September 13, 2021 7:27 am PDT

Every NBA team wants to exceed their expectations, but there are those who fail to do that and fall short.

There are usually a few factors that cause this. They range from injuries to poor coaching or even just a lack of talent.

The 2021-22 NBA season will return to an 82-game schedule, so bettors need to remember that when betting on teams that won’t hit their win total.

With that in mind, let’s check out the best under bets for NBA team win totals for the 2021-22 NBA season.

Phoenix Suns Under 51.5 Wins (-125)

The Phoenix Suns came into the 2020-21 season with a playoff drought that lasted 10 seasons.

That included just one season over .500. Everyone knew Phoenix would improve when they acquired Chris Paul in the offseason. However, I don’t think anyone saw their big season coming.

Phoenix surprised everyone by finishing with the second-best record in the NBA at 51-21.

They continued their dominance in the playoffs, making their first NBA Finals appearance since 1993. The Suns ultimately lost to the Milwaukee Bucks, but they earned everyone’s respect.

This season, Phoenix has the second-highest win total in the Western Conference. I know they had an amazing season, but I’m pumping the breaks just a bit.

The Suns roster is nearly identical to their 2020-21 team. They re-signed Chris Paul and their core, Devin Booker and DeAndre Ayton, are all under contract.

In free agency, they made minor additions that included Elfrid Payton, Landry Shamet, and JaVale McGee.

I have my doubts about their ability to replicate their success.

For starters, the Western Conference is competitive as ever. I’d say the top seven teams will remain in the playoffs this season with the Los Angeles Lakers improving their team this offseason. The Golden State Warriors will likely return to championship contention with the return of Klay Thompson.

Add in the Utah Jazz, Denver Nuggets, Los Angeles Clippers, and Dallas Mavericks and you have a lot of competition.

At some point, I feel like Chris Paul is going to begin to show his age. The 36-year-old didn’t have elite numbers last season, but his impact on the Suns made them a championship contender.

There’s a reason he finished fifth in MVP voting last season.

I know there are people out there who are high on the Suns and believe they will repeat as Western Conference champions. However, I think they overachieved last season and I just don’t see them sustaining their success.

They still have potential to be a top team in the Western Conference. It’s just tough to win over 51.5 games.

It’ll be close, but I think Phoenix falls short of their win total.

New York Knicks Under 41.5 Wins (-110)

Last season, the New York Knicks entered the season with the lowest win total in the league at 22.5.

It wasn’t too surprising considering they were coming off back-to-back seasons with less than 22 wins. There’s no way anyone saw last season’s breakout coming.

New York made their first playoff appearance in eight years. And they didn’t just sneak in. They made it as the four seed with a 41-31 record.

Julius Randle was the driving force behind the Knicks’ surprising season. Check out his numbers.

  • 24.1 points
  • 10.2 rebounds
  • 6.0 assists
  • 45.6 field goal percentage
  • 41.1 three-point percentage

In the playoffs, the Atlanta Hawks took advantage of the Knicks lack of star power. They defeated them in five games. Randle had a disastrous playoff series that saw him shoot 29.8 percent from the field.

Following the series, it became apparent that the Knicks wouldn’t be serious contenders unless they added a legit superstar alongside Randle. Did the Knicks do that in free agency? Well, not exactly.

The Knicks made two big free-agent signings. The first of those was Evan Fournier.

Fournier has also been a solid scorer in this league. He has averaged at least 15 points in the last six seasons. He is also a career 37.9 percent three-point shooter. Fournier is definitely a solid addition, but he isn’t pushing the needle.

Their other big signing was a surprise. They brought in Kemba Walker after the Oklahoma City Thunder bought out his contract.

Walker was definitely a superstar three or four years ago, but his numbers have slipped over the last two years. He averaged under 20 points last season for the first time since the 2014-15 season. At this point, I think he works best as a second star.

I think the Knicks will struggle to replicate their success this season.

Because teams like the Boston Celtics and Indiana Pacers will improve, I think New York misses the playoffs.

For my liking, they didn’t make enough upgrades to keep up with the other playoff teams in the Eastern Conference. It could be another disappointing season in New York.

Sacramento Kings Under 36.5 Wins (-120)

It must be tough to be a Sacramento Kings fan. The team has the longest playoff drought in the NBA at 15 years. That’s 10 more than the second-longest drought, which belongs to the Charlotte Hornets.

In those 15 seasons, let’s look at all the times Sacramento has won over 36.5 games.

  • 2007-08: 38-44
  • 2018-19: 39-43

Over the last two seasons, the Kings have won 31 games each. Can they improve and hit the over on their win total? Let’s check out their roster.

Sacramento’s strength is definitely at the guard position. De’Aaron Fox and Tyrese Haliburton represent their two best players.

Fox had a big 2020-21 season, averaging 25.2 points. 7.2 assists, and 1.5 steals. He really doesn’t receive the same respect as others but he is one of the league’s top point guards. He is also just 23 years old.

Haliburton had a very solid rookie season with 13.0 points per game on 40.9 percent three-point shooting. The 21-year-old has a lot of potential. There are rumors surrounding a potential Ben Simmons trade, but the Kings have refused to include Haliburton in any offer.

The Kings gave Richaun Holmes a four-year, $55 million contract this offseason. Holmes has become a more complete center in his two seasons with the Kings.

Add in first-round draft pick Davion Mitchell and the Kings have a legit foundation to build around. But will it be enough to reach 36.5 wins? I don’t think so.

Honestly, I felt like Sacramento exceeded expectations last season and they still finished with just 31 wins.

They hung around the battle for the 10 seed and a spot in the play-in game before fading late.

Outside of drafting Mitchell, they didn’t make any upgrades. They are relying on a big sophomore season from Haliburton.

They also kept head coach Luke Walton in a move that surprised a lot of people. In his five seasons of coaching, Walton has never had a team win more than 37 games. Do we think this Kings team will be the first?

It’ll likely be another tough season for Kings fans.

Memphis Grizzlies Under 41.5 Wins (+100)

The Memphis Grizzlies are such an interesting team because they aren’t bad, but they don’t have enough talent to compete with the elites of the Western Conference.

In the 2015-16 and 2016-17 seasons, the Grizzlies hovered right around .500 with 42 and 43 wins, respectively. Following three straight seasons of missing the playoffs, Memphis made the postseason last year with a 38-34 record.

Memphis actually finished ninth in the Western Conference, but they won both games in the play-in tournament to make the postseason. They ultimately fell to the Utah Jazz in five games.

I like Memphis and I think they have a lot of potential moving forward. However, they have a very similar issue to the New York Knicks. They lack star power.

Ja Morant may have just turned 22 years old but he is the Grizzlies best player. Morant averaged 19.1 points in the regular season last year, but he took his game to another level in the postseason.

He went off with 30.2 points per game, including a career-high 47 points in Game 2, which the  Grizzlies lost.

They may have lost the series, but Morant was one of the top young stars in the NBA playoffs.

Outside of Morant, the Grizzlies don’t have a second star.

Dillon Brooks was their second-highest scorer last season with 17.2 points per game. He also played some elite defense, but Brooks isn’t a star.

I think a move no one is talking about this offseason is the Grizzlies trading Jonas Valanciunas in a package that netted them Steven Adams.

Let’s compare their numbers from last season.

Stat Jonas Valanciunas Steven Adams
Points 17.1 7.6
Rebounds 12.5 8.9
Free Throw Percentage 77.3 44.4
Double-Doubles 49 13
Player Efficiency Rating 24.4 15.1

It’s clear that Memphis suffered a huge downgrade at the center position with this move. It’s something people need to realize.

Ultimately, it’s going to be close on whether Memphis hits 41.5 wins but I’m siding with the under. I just don’t like the fact that Morant is their only star and they lost one of their best players this offseason.

Betting on NBA Win Totals in 2021-22

It’s definitely a lot tougher to bet on the under win total than the over.

I like the mix of teams I have here because I feel all of them overachieved last season. A combination of returning to reality and increased competition leads to less wins.

Feel free to check out some more of our NBA betting articles.

Nicholas Sterling

Nicholas has been a Sports Writer with since May 2021. He has a rich sports background, writing about NASCAR, NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, Golf, etc. Nick is always ready for a new challenge.

He enjoys rooting on D.C. sports teams, including the Commanders, Wizards, and Capitals.

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