How will the NBA’s Eastern Conference play out in 2021-22?
The Philadelphia 76ers and Brooklyn Nets battled for the conference’s No. 1 seed last season, but it was two-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo and the third-seeded Milwaukee Bucks who went on to win the East and the NBA title.
The Nets, with their big three of Kevin Durant, James Harden and Kyrie Irving healthy, will be looking for revenge against a Bucks team that outlasted them in a thrilling, seven-game series in the second round.
Meanwhile, the Miami Heat, who acquired one of the biggest free agents of the summer in guard Kyle Lowry, have retooled in their quest to return to the NBA Finals. The Atlanta Hawks and New York Knicks look to improve after surging up the East standings last season. The Boston Celtics and Indiana Pacers hope new head coaches can vault their franchises back into contender status.
Which teams will separate from the pack? Which teams are playoff locks? How will the field for Year 2 of the play-in tournament shape up?
Our expert panel is predicting the win-loss records for all 15 teams in the Eastern Conference.
Note: Our 2021-22 NBA Summer Forecast will continue Tuesday with our Western Conference standings projections.
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