Episode 20 of the Sports Betting Tips podcast, featuring veteran NBA journalist Chris Sheridan, is now available. In this week’s episode, Chris interviews former Cleveland Cavaliers general manager David Griffin, who is now working as an analyst for SiriusXM NBA and NBATV.
Listen to the full conversation here:
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LeBron’s New Situation
Griffin served as GM of LeBron James’ Cavs from Feb. 2014-June 2017. He recently spent some time around the Lakers’ facility and took stock of LeBron’s new squad.
What impressed him most? The camaraderie.
“What you get a feel for is just the vibe and the energy these guys have,” Griffin said. “The young guys that they need to take a quantum leap forward have really bought in, both to LeBron and Rondo, the leadership they provide, but also, more importantly, into one another. There’s a real camaraderie and chemistry between Kyle and Lonzo and Brandon.”
The Lakers are currently 14-1 to win the NBA title. But there are valid concerns about how they will perform in crunch time.
“When the game slows down in playoff basketball, do they have enough shooting to space the floor around LeBron?” Griffin questioned.
The Lakers’ over/under is now at 47.5, as it continues to drop. As Griffin noted, however, the Lakers could win well over 40 games and still miss the playoffs in the loaded West.
Griffin’s choice for the second-best team in the West isn’t the Lakers, Rockets, or Thunder. It’s the Utah Jazz.
“I don’t think Utah gets talked about nearly enough, in large part because they didn’t make a big, sexy move in the offseason, and what they’re about is continuity,” Griffin explained.
He added that he sees Donovan Mitchell taking another step forward after an impressive rookie campaign.
The Jazz are currently a longshot, at 65-1, to win the championship.
“They’ve got a young, developing nucleus that’s going to be together for years,” Griffin said.
Minnesota, Miami & Jimmy Butler
Griffin said Minnesota GM Scott Layden is in a tough position with Jimmy Butler.
“I think it’s a really difficult situation anytime you’re not in lockstep in terms of head coach, front office, and ownership, and it’s fairly clear by the way this has played out that they are not,” Griffin shared.
He added that Miami likely feels the power is in its corner, as Minnesota is clearly out of sorts and Butler clearly wants out. For that reason, Griffin explained, the Heat likely won’t hurry to ship out Josh Richardson or Bam Adebayo.
Later in the podcast, our hosts talked about potential sleepers for Rookie of the Year, LeBron’s role as a mentor in L.A., Denver big man Nikola Jokic and his MVP chances, and more. Listen to the full episode by hitting play above, and be sure to subscribe to Get More Sports’ podcast Sports Betting Tips with Chris Sheridan on your platform of choice.
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