2021 NBL Season Preview & Predictions

The NBL 2021 season is only days away, and we look at the best Outright Winner predictions and odds.

Melbourne United are the favourites, which is commonplace in pre-season markets. Another well-backed team are Cairns, and the New Zealand Breakers round out the top three.

Punters get value odds for quality teams this season, so let’s take a look at the best value bets.


All odds are with Sportsbet – our No. 1 rated bookmaker. You can join Sportsbet by clicking HERE.


2021 NBL Season Predictions

NBL 2021 Outright Winner – Cairns Taipans @ $3.75

It has been six seasons since the Cairns Taipans won the NBL title, but they are coming off an impressive 2020 season.

Cairns finished third before losing to Perth Wildcats in the semi-finals. Scott Machado returns to the Taipans, and he is currently second in the MVP market.

Along with Cameron Oliver, the Taipans have a team that could push Melbourne and New Zealand close. They have been building towards a title bid, and we’re not surprised at the market support this season.

We expect the Taipans to start the season well, so the odds will firm throughout the tournamentBet @ Sportsbet

NBL 2021 Best Value Tip – New Zealand Breakers @ $5

It won’t be an easy season for the Breakers, who will have to spend months in Australia before potentially returning home to play.

However, much like the New Zealand Warriors in the NRL, they might be forced to play the entire 2021 season in Australia.

Despite that, New Zealand is a value play for the title. They bring in a solid team into the competition, including Lamar Patterson, Thomas Abercrombie, Corey Webster, and Daniel Trist.

The Breakers know what it takes to win the NBL, and that experience should take them close this season.

Punters get value odds with the Kiwis, and we wouldn’t bet against themBet @ Sportsbet

NBL 2021 Best Roughie – Perth Wildcats @ $10

We can’t believe Perth is playing double-figure odds to win the NBL 2021 title. They might have lost some players, but MVP Bryce Cotton returns, and sometimes he’s all you need.

Perth also has John Mooney, who has attracted support in the MVP race, so there is no reason why they can’t win their sixth title in the last seven years.

There appears to be no betting interest with the Wildcats. However, if they start the season well, bookmakers will trim the odds considerably.

For a team that hasn’t missed the playoffs since 1986, punters are getting incredible oddsBet @ Sportsbet

NBL 2021 MVP Picks

Betting on the NBL MVP race is always fun, so let’s take a look at this season’s best picks.

Bryce Cotton @ $6.00 – Bet @ Sportsbet

The Perth Wildcats’ superstar is the current favourite at $6, which is a generous quote from bookmakers.

Cotton comes off an impressive title-winning season with Perth, and there is no reason to bet against him. He won MVP last season, and although Perth isn’t fancied by bookmakers to win, Cotton should light up the scorer’s card.

He is a player who has consistency score big totals, and he leads all contenders in that category.

Scott Machado @ $7 – Bet @ Sportsbet

The American made the NBL First Team last season, in what was a breakout season for the 30-year-old. He showed his maturity for Cairns, and he subsequently signed a two-year extension.

We think Cairns will be the hardest to beat this season, and Machado has a lot to do with that. If he can find his offensive rhythm early in the season, that will allow the Taipans to relax and win.

He is on the second line of betting, and he’s the player that could upset Bryce Cotton.

Lamar Patterson @ $11.00 – Bet @ Sportsbet

The former Brisbane Bullet has played two NBL seasons and been selected to the First Team in both.

He played in Puerto Rico in the off-season before it was abandoned due to COVID in March. The season resumed in November, and he helped his team reach the finals.

In August last year, Patterson signed with the NZ Breakers, and he could take them to another level. The small forward is a Chinese NBL scoring champion, so expect plenty of points for the Breakers.

If he puts up impressive scoring stats, Lamar Patterson is every chance of winning the MVP title at double-figure odds.


All odds are with Sportsbet – our No. 1 rated bookmaker. You can join Sportsbet by clicking HERE.

Daryl Curnow
About the Author: Daryl Curnow

After graduating from the University of Auckland (BA – English), Daryl was thrown into the world of sports and horse racing journalism.
Having worked as a racing journalist for two years, he decided to move into the online world of horse racing and sports writing. After years of honing his craft, Daryl became a professional punter in 2009 – with a focus on horse racing, NRL, AFL, NBA, Rugby, NFL, and US college sports. Daryl’s tips have been featured on various websites around the world before joining the GoBet team. When he’s not working, Daryl tries to avoid making bogeys on the golf course.

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