The Dark Horse Teams to Watch Out for in the 2023 NBA Playoffs

The NBA is the most awaited basketball tournament that takes place every year. Different teams participate in this tournament with the winning hope. But the winning chance belongs to only some teams. The winning depends on the overall performance of the teams.

Many squads try to return yearly and improve their chances of winning the tournament. You can also call them dark horses. In previous years, such squads could have performed better. After years, their comeback enchants everyone, and they begin counting on them to win the bet. Anyone with an idea regarding dark horses can easily be involved in sports betting NZ.

In this write-up, you will explore all the teams that are considered dark horses in the 2023 playoff. You can prepare yourself for placing the bet and observe their incredible performance. Most bettors consider their favorite squads for betting as they perform well throughout the tournament.

Cleveland Cavaliers


It is surprising to check the record of winning the previous three seasons, and people are stunned by their performance. Overall, there were 48 victories, and it is expected that the team to win this tournament. Within months, the team finally transformed and reached the finals.

The squad must prepare for every possible conclusion. If you want to know about the defense capability of Cleveland, it is quite legit. Two favorite candidates, i.e., Evan and Allen, are ranked second after filtering the rim protection.

When a good player was once requested to sit on the bench, it was complicated for the team to score consistently. It is a breaking point for the team but they recover their performance quickly. In the 2023 league, this squad is considered the favorite dark horse capable of winning this tournament.

Los Angeles Lakers


In their previous ten games, this team won seven of them, and it is progressing rapidly. When it comes to evaluating the performance of the squad in the 2023 league, it is outstanding. Like other dark horse teams, it is also considered one of them as it has the winning ability. They performed efficiently in both defensive and offensive ways.

In this entire season, the LA team gets outsourced. A player, Russell, faced difficulty integrating different pieces while doing functional offense. You can call it the beginning and end of the previous-going trend. James was the player who found different ways to make the team work as required.

If this player does not perform effectively, there is no chance for the squad to reach the finals and win the tournament. The player needs to be at full strength. But now, the career of James is winding out and the front office is doing possible things to augment this squad. But it is a dark horse contender like other teams on the list.

Minnesota Timberwolves


In the previous season, this squad impressed everything with 46 wins in all its regular seasons. Last year, the squad with their strongest contender, Memphis Grizzlies, won the tournament. Due to their extraordinary performance in the last year, it is considered their favorite team this year too.

If they keep performing in a current manner, they will play with warriors in their second round. This team is advancing every year, and it becomes exciting for bettors. People are expecting too much from this squad because of the talented players.

The squad is ready to fight the battle with other participants and win the tournament. Minnesota will survive at least the finals, giving the rest of the teams a tough fight. It is a favorite choice for bettors across the globe. With its advancing success, many people rely on this squad to win the bet.

The Minnesota squad is considered strong and can survive the competition properly. Therefore, it ranks at the top of the list of dark horse teams. If you consider the Timberwolves for its better playoff, there is a high scope of winning the bet. But it is hard to say about the finals because the best squad will win the tournament.

New Orleans Pelicans


It is another interesting basketball squad participating in the NBA tournament and performing well. The deadline for the trade is soon going to happen, and all the players are ready to face the challenge. The team already has many holes that will be later addressed on the roster. Other trade candidates are also linked to this squad.

Undoubtedly, many young players are participating on behalf of this team, and the deal will be accomplished depending on the better draft assets. The players perform like a spiral by losing 14 in their previous 17 games. The front office is under pressure while making any move.

In 2023, the front office will provide a specific structure to the roster and extensions to different players to perform well in the tournament. People across the globe are making interesting comments about different players and their performance.

It is a favorite team for some bettors, even if it loses a few games in previous years. But its comeback is surprising and unexpected. People are hoping to see this squad play in the finals of the NBA tournament and consider it a dark horse.

The Bottom Line

Every year, people feel excited about the NBA basketball tournament. Many bettors across the globe look out for the best team, players, and performance to make their choice. But sometimes, searching for the best and favorite squad can be challenging. Comparing the history of NBA tournaments in previous years, you will see that many teams are doing well and giving tough fights to each other.

But only the best squad will win the tournament even if many teams perform well and improve the chances of winning bets. You must consider all the mentioned basketball squads in the 2023 NBA tournament playoff, as they perform well. These teams are also considered dark horses because they are favorites, and their chances of winning the tournament are also high.