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We surveyed our basketball writers and columnists for their predictions for the 2020-21 NBA season. Here are their picks for each conference, the Finals matchup, the league MVP, and their outlook for the Celtics:

Chad Finn

EASTERN CONFERENCE

1. Milwaukee Bucks

2. Brooklyn Nets

3. Philadelphia 76ers

4. Miami Heat

5. Boston Celtics

6. Toronto Raptors

7. Indiana Pacers

8. Washington Wizards

WESTERN CONFERENCE

1. Denver Nuggets

2. LA Lakers

3. LA Clippers

4. Dallas Mavericks

5. Portland Trail Blazers

6. Utah Jazz

7. Phoenix Suns

8. New Orleans Pelicans

FINALS: Lakers over Bucks — The Lakers go back-to-back, winning their 13th title, four fewer than the Celtics. What’s that? No, of course the five they won in Minneapolis don’t count. That would give them more than the Celtics, silly.

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MVP: Giannis Antetokounmpo

Wacky Celtics prediction: Danny Ainge uses the vaunted trade exception acquired in the Gordon Hayward deal to pick up Harrison Barnes from the Kings. Barnes immediately becomes the most enigmatic Celtics forward since . . . Gordon Hayward.

Harrison Barnes on the Celtics would be an intriguing move.
Harrison Barnes on the Celtics would be an intriguing move.Abbie Parr/Getty

Adam Himmelsbach

EASTERN CONFERENCE

1. Milwaukee Bucks

2. Brooklyn Nets

3. Miami Heat

4. Toronto Raptors

5. Boston Celtics

6. Philadelphia 76ers

7. Indiana Pacers

8. Atlanta Hawks

WESTERN CONFERENCE

1. LA Lakers

2. Denver Nuggets

3. LA Clippers

4. Utah Jazz

5. Portland Trail Blazers

6. Dallas Mavericks

7. Golden State Warriors

8. Phoenix Suns

FINALS: Lakers over Bucks — Jrue Holiday gives Milwaukee the boost it needed to take the next step and give Giannis Antetokounmpo his first Finals appearance, but the Lakers’ additions of Montrezl Harrell and Dennis Schroder, who finished first and second in Sixth Man of the Year voting last year, give them more than enough firepower alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis.

MVP: Luka Doncic

Wacky Celtics prediction: With Kemba Walker out and Gordon Hayward gone, Jayson Tatum gets all the shots he wants, and when he catches fire in an overtime matchup against an Eastern Conference playoff team, he makes a run at Larry Bird’s franchise single-game scoring record of 60 points but finishes with 55.

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Dan Shaughnessy

EASTERN CONFERENCE

1. Brooklyn Nets

2. Milwaukee Bucks

3. Miami Heat

4. Philadelphia 76ers

5. Boston Celtics

6. Washington Wizards

7. Indiana Pacers

8. Toronto Raptors

WESTERN CONFERENCE

1. LA Lakers

2 Dallas Mavericks

3. LA Clippers

4. Golden State Warriors

5. Denver Nuggets

6. Phoenix Suns

7. Utah Jazz

8. Portland Trail Blazers

Finals: Lakers over Nets — Kyrie accidently sets Staples Center on fire with his sage stunt, delaying Game 7. Game is played the next night, Nets lose, Kyrie shoots 0 for 16, and takes no responsibility.

MVP: Luka Doncic

Wacky Celtics prediction: Looking more like Maurice Lucas than Paul George, Jayson Tatum takes a step backward.

Bob Ryan

EASTERN CONFERENCE

1. Brooklyn Nets

2. Milwaukee Bucks

3. Miami Heat

4. Boston Celtics

5. Philadelphia 76ers

6. Toronto Raptors

7. Indiana Pacers

8. New York Knicks

WESTERN CONFERENCE

1. LA Lakers

2. Denver Nuggets

3. Dallas Mavericks

4. Utah Jazz

5. Portland Trail Blazers

6. LA Clippers

7. Golden State Warriors

8. New Orleans Pelicans

FINALS: Lakers over Bucks — The King ain’t dead yet. And GM Rob Pelinka provided him with new valuable worthy subjects.

MVP: Kevin Durant

Wacky Celtics prediction: Jaylen Brown will make the All-Star Game and will also announce he is running concurrently for mayor of Boston and state representative in Georgia.

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Could Kevin Durant win MVP in his first season back?
Could Kevin Durant win MVP in his first season back?Sarah Stier/Getty

Gary Washburn

EASTERN CONFERENCE

1. Milwaukee Bucks

2. Brooklyn Nets

3. Philadelphia 76ers

4. Boston Celtics

5. Toronto Raptors

6. Miami Heat

7. Washington Wizards

8. Atlanta Hawks

WESTERN CONFERENCE

1. LA Lakers

2. LA Clippers

3. Dallas Mavericks

4. Portland Trail Blazers

5. Denver Nuggets

6. Golden State Warriors

7. Utah Jazz

8. Phoenix Suns

Finals: Lakers over Nets — In an epic Finals, LeBron finally gets the better of Kevin Durant, and also betters his former teammate, Kyrie Irving. James brings a second consecutive title back.

MVP: Anthony Davis

Wacky Celtics prediction: Aaron Nesmith will average 10 points per game.




Adam Himmelsbach can be reached at adam.himmelsbach@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @adamhimmelsbach.