Before the 2017-2018 NBA season began, many sports media sites gave their predictions for the record each team would finish with. We took predictions from ESPN, Bleacher Report, and CBS Sports to see how they did with their guesses. Bold text indicates the actual record of each team and green text shows the record projected by the sports media site that was closest.

ESPN and CBS Sports only gave win total estimates, which we rounded up to the nearest number and added a loss column to be more easily compared. In the event of a tie breaker we referred to the exact number offered by each site to determine who was actually closer.

(E.x., CBS Sports predicted 40.7 wins for the 76ers so they lose the tiebreaker)

In the case of two guesses being equal on either side of the actual win total, we chose who was closest without going over. (Price is Right style. Plus we like teams to exceed expectations.)

(E.x. ESPN wins the tiebreaker over Bleacher Report for it’s closer guess on Cleveland. They predicted 49.2 wins for the Cavs)

 

Eastern Conference

Team 2017-2018 Record ESPN Bleacher Report CBS Sports
Toronto Raptors 59-23 43-39 47-35 49-33
Boston Celtics 55-27 49-33 57-25 55-27
Philadelphia 76ers 52-30 33-49 41-41 41-41
Cleveland Cavaliers 50-32 49-33 51-31 54-28
Indiana Pacers 48-34 32-50 30-52 31-51
Miami Heat 44-38 42-40 44-38 40-42
Milwaukee Bucks 44-38 47-35 49-33 41-41
Washington Wizards 43-39 48-34 50-32 45-37
Detroit Pistons 39-43 35-47 37-45 43-39
Charlotte Hornets 36-46 44-38 43-39 42-40
New York Knicks 29-53 32-50 26-56 35-47
Brooklyn Nets 28-54 30-52 30-52 21-61
Chicago Bulls 27-55 29-53 20-62 29-53
Orlando Magic 25-57 32-50 34-48 26-56
Atlanta Hawks 24-58 27-55 24-58 32-50

 

Western Conference

Team 2017-2018 Record ESPN Bleacher Report CBS Sports
Houston Rockets 65-17 55-27 62-20 55-27
Golden State Warriors 58-24 62-20 69-13 66-16
Portland Trail Blazers 49-33 43-39 37-45 39-43
Oklahoma City Thunder 48-34 50-32 51-31 48-34
Utah Jazz 48-34 45-37 45-37 36-46
New Orleans Pelicans 48-34 44-38 40-42 43-39
San Antonio Spurs 47-35 53-29 54-28 53-29
Minnesota Timberwolves 47-35 50-32 48-34 46-36
Denver Nuggets 46-36 47-35 44-38 41-41
Los Angeles Clippers 42-40 49-33 43-39 43-39
Los Angeles Lakers 35-47 33-49 43-39 35-47
Sacramento Kings 27-55 27-55 31-51 35-47
Dallas Mavericks 24-58 35-47 32-50 38-44
Memphis Grizzlies 22-60 35-47 41-41 39-43
Phoenix Suns 21-61 30-52 21-61 29-53

 

Closest prediction totals:

ESPN: 11

http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/20225286/projected-records-win-totals-standings-every-nba-team-2017-18-season

Bleacher Report: 10

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2723737-nba-schedule-2017-18-team-by-team-record-predictions-and-playoff-odds

CBS Sports: 9

https://www.cbssports.com/nba/photos/every-nba-teams-2017-18-projected-win-total-playoff-chances/

There are a couple things that we can draw from this graphic.

First: the Indian Pacers clearly exceeded any expectations set for them after the Paul George trade.

Second: Everyone thought that Golden State would be a 60 win team this year, but they were unable to achieve that.

And last of all: Predicting a team’s record before the season begins is almost as hard as filling out a perfect March Madness bracket, and almost as much fun.

 

 

Title Photo Source: SI.com

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