As the 2022/23 NBA season approaches, there are plenty of teams across the league who are desperate to do better this time around.
That goes for the big contending teams like the Boston Celtics and Milwaukee Bucks, while it's also true of the sides who fell some way short of expectations.
While there are 29 teams across the league looking to do better in 22/23, five sides stand out. They've all had big breaks from competitive basketball, while their rosters look capable of delivering much improved displays in the new campaign.
The Brooklyn Nets are the only side on this list to have made the Play-offs last season, but they didn't hang around long. They were the dark horses coming out of the Play-in tournament, but a series sweep by the Boston Celtics set up a difficult summer in Brooklyn.
Wantaway stars Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving are both staying for the year after requesting trades in the offseason.
They will team up with Ben Simmons at long last after the former All-Star didn't make the court following his arrival in February.
While the Nets were looking to move KD, they were still busy adding role players who could help him out. They traded for Royce O'Neale from the Utah Jazz and picked up TJ Warren from the Indiana Pacers.
Both should complement KD and Kyrie, while the return of Joe Harris from injury gives Brooklyn even more threat. The Nets have been cut to 8/1 for the championship after the KD news and they look like real contenders, providing they stay injury and drama free.
Last season was a solid showing for the LA Clippers considering what Ty Lue was working with. However, they haven't built one of the league's biggest wage bills to lose in the Play-in tournament. This time around the Clippers are hoping to have Kawhi Leonard and Paul George at full fitness, which immediately makes them title contenders.
The Clippers are 7/1 to emerge as NBA champions this term, having boosted their roster with the addition of John Wall. That’s a big gamble by their front office, given that Wall last played an NBA game in April 2021.
However, he'll be third or fourth in the pecking order at best, giving him a pressure-free environment to get back to fitness.
Even without Wall, the Clippers have enough talent to better last season's finish. If Wall clicks, they could end their wait for an NBA title.
It wasn't a good year across the board in LA, as the Lakers failed to even make the Play-in tournament. It was a dismal failure for the 2020 champions, who had a meek exit in the Play-offs the season before.
Frank Vogel paid the price for last season, with Darvin Ham taking over as head coach. He has already tried to improve Russell Westbrook's confidence, with the aim of getting him, Anthony Davis and LeBron James to gel.
The Lakers have improved their depth beyond their big three, adding Juan Toscano-Anderson, Lonnie Walker and Patrick Beverley. Their top-heavy roster fell apart last season, but they are 1/3 to return to the Play-offs having made good moves in the offseason.
The Kings finished last season outside the Play-in spots with Alvin Gentry as their interim coach. This offseason saw them move for Golden State Warriors assistant Mike Brown to lead the team, while they look to have made a serious upgrade with their draft pick.
The Kings got Keegan Murray with the fourth pick in this summer's draft and the forward made an immediate impact at Summer League. Malik Monk – one of the few bright spots for the Lakers last year – has also moved to Sacramento, while they added three-point threat, Kevin Huerter, from the Atlanta Hawks.
The Kings moved for Domantas Sabonis at the trade deadline, but he didn’t have enough time to turn their season around. While the Kings are 17/4 to make the Play-offs, they’ve made enough improvements to finally return to the postseason.
The Pistons have finished 13th, 15th and 14th in the East in the previous three seasons, but there's reason for optimism. They have two great young talents in Cade Cunningham and Saddiq Bey, while they were also busy on draft night.
The Pistons picked up Jaden Ivey, Ismael Kamagate and Jalen Duren from the draft. They join a young, promising Pistons side who could finally kick on. While they won only 23 games in 21/22, Dwane Casey has been slowly rebuilding in Detroit.
The Pistons are 15/1 for the Play-offs and they probably won't make it that far, but this roster is ready to push for the Play-in. It seems the tanking days are done in Detroit, so expect to see improvements as this young side continues to grow.