LakersNation Staff 2024 NBA Playoffs Series Rankings
LeBron James, Lakers, Nuggets
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The 2024 NBA Playoffs are shaping up to be an enthralling showcase of basketball prowess and competitive spirit. As teams battle for supremacy, each series presents its unique narrative and challenges. In this article, we rank the playoff series involving the Los Angeles Lakers and other standout matchups, exploring the dynamics and odds that make this postseason particularly exciting.

2024 NBA Playoffs Series Rankings

8. Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat

The Celtics, the top seed from the regular season, are favorites against the eighth-seeded Heat. Boston’s balanced starting five is poised to contend for a championship. Miami, familiar with deep playoff runs, faces challenges this year, especially with concerns about Jimmy Butler’s knee injury.

Series Odds: Celtics -200, Heat +170

7. Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Orlando Magic

Despite being a matchup between the No. 4 Cavaliers and the No. 5 Magic, this series might not grab headlines due to a perceived lack of marquee star power. Cleveland boasts a strong roster led by Donovan Mitchell and features Darius Garland, Evan Mobley, Jarrett Allen, and Caris LeVert, all eager to make amends for last season’s early exit. Orlando, back in the playoffs for the first time since 2020, relies on young talents Paolo Banchero and Franz Wagner. While full of potential, this matchup is overshadowed by other star-studded confrontations.

Series Odds: Cavaliers -150, Magic +130

6. Oklahoma City Thunder vs. New Orleans Pelicans

Oklahoma City, clinching the top seed for the first time since 2020, faces the No. 8 Pelicans. The Thunder, led by Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Chet Holmgren, look to avoid an upset. Despite having talent like Zion Williamson (pending injury status), New Orleans remains an underdog.

Series Odds: Thunder -160, Pelicans +140**

5. New York Knicks vs. Philadelphia 76ers

This series features the No. 2 Knicks and No. 7 Sixers. Due to injury, New York is without Julius Randle. New York depends on Jalen Brunson and others. Philadelphia hopes a healthy Joel Embiid can lead them to victory.

Series Odds: Knicks -130, Sixers +110

4. Denver Nuggets vs. Los Angeles Lakers

In a 2023 Western Conference Finals rematch, the No. 2 Nuggets face the No. 7 Lakers. We’d have hoped to rank this a more compelling series; however, Denver swept the Lakers last year, and the in-season match-ups heavily favored the Nuggets, who seem to have LA’s number. With both teams retaining key players, a similar outcome could be on the horizon. The Lakers, however, hope additions like Taurean Prince and Spencer Dinwiddie can tip the scales.

Series Odds: Nuggets -175, Lakers +155

3. Milwaukee Bucks vs. Indiana Pacers

The third-seeded Bucks face the sixth-seeded Pacers in a burgeoning rivalry. Despite an injury to Giannis Antetokounmpo, which will keep him out of the opening game, Milwaukee remains competitive. Indiana, led by Pascal Siakam and Tyrese Haliburton, could pose a significant threat.

Series Odds: Bucks -165, Pacers +145

2. Los Angeles Clippers vs. Dallas Mavericks

The series sees the No. 4 Clippers against the No. 5 Mavericks. With stars like Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, Luka Doncic, and Kyrie Irving, this evenly matched series promises high stakes and thrilling basketball.

Series Odds: Clippers -110, Mavericks -110

1. Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Phoenix Suns

The top-ranked series has the No. 3 Timberwolves, led by Anthony Edwards, face the No. 6 Suns, who struggled with injuries but have high-profile players like Kevin Durant and Devin Booker. This series could be a defining moment for both teams.

Series Odds: Timberwolves -140, Suns +120

These matchups highlight the league’s competitive balance and promise to deliver basketball at its finest. The Eastern Conference is top-heavy, with the Celtics huge favorites; however, the Western Conference is highly competitive despite hosting the defending champion Nuggets. Players can check online casino sites for playoff races, matchups, and their favorite team’s seeding and bank on these predictions to determine the odds and opportunities available before placing stakes.

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