NBA playoffs Preview : The West

Let’s see what is waiting for us in the wild wild west.

#1 Golden State Vs. #8 New Orleans

  • Home Court : Golden State have it, there home crowd is the best in the league and facing a very young team tha will give them an extra edge.
  • Coaching : We have 2 coaches with no playoffs experience as coaches, but Steve Keer having Alvin Gentry as an assistant coach will help him a lot. I give the edge to
  • Starting Five : I have the center position even between Asik and Bogut, in the 4 position i will take Davis over Green (Green will gives problems for Davis forcing him to go outside the paint to defend him) beside that it’s all Golden State the splash brothers will be a nightmare for a slow New Orleans back court in the persons of Gordon and Evans. I’m giving the Edge to Golden State in this one.
  • Bench : Hollidays and Anderson will help New Orleans but Golden State are 12 deep and they all have there moments during the regular season, so they will be ready if needed. Edge goes to Golden State in this one.

The New Orleans celebration after the last game of the regular season tells me a lot, they achieved there goal by going to the playoffs now it’s bonus basketball for them, on the other side the goal is much different they are thinking championship. That’s why i think it will be a quick series 4-0 for Golden State.

#2 Houston Vs. #7 Dallas

  • Home Court : Houston have it, but with 2 teams loaded with veterans i don’t think of it as a big deal unless the series goes to a 7th game. A slight edge for Houston in this one.
  • Coaching : Kevin McHale wasn’t able to adjust to Aldridge domination last year it took him 2 game to do so, on the other side Carlisle is one of the best in the business (i have him at number 3 in the league behind Doc and Pop) he have a neck for finding weaknesses and mismatches. I give the edge to Dallas in this one.
  • Starting Five : I don’t know how many minutes Howard will play but if healthy i will give it to him over Chandler, in the 4 position of course i’m taking Nowitzki in the 3 i’m going with Parson if healthy (i think he is they preserved him a lot in the end of the season) at the 2 Harden Harden Harden not much to say there he is my MVP of the league so, and in point guard position beside an aging Prigioni or Terry a don’t see any other PG in Houston’s roster it can’t do it against Rondo. I will give a slight edge to Dallas here.
  • Bench : We have Stoudemire, Harris, Barea and Jefferson on one side and Brewer and Josh Smith on the other. For me the edge is for Dallas in this one.

This series is Harden againt a decent team and a great coach, the question is as good as Harden is can he win 4 games? The answer for me is No. that’s why i’m going with Dallas in 6 games.

#3 L.A. Clippers Vs. #6 San Antonio

  • Home Court : Clippers got this one, but with 2 teams loaded with veterans and well coached i don’t see it as a big factor. If there is a 7th game it is better to have it at home. That’s why i give slight edge the Clippers here.
  • Coaching : We have here the best coach in the in the person of Popovich and the 2nd best coach in the person of Doc Rivers this one is even for me.
  • Starting Five : At the PG position it is even for me between CP3 and Parker, it is also even between Green and Redick at the 2 position, at the 3 i’m giving it to Kawhi over Barnes, and the Clippers got the 4 and 5 positions for me they are just too young and too strong for the Spurs bigs. The edge is for the Clippers here.
  • Bench : the Spurs have too much weapons between Ginobili Belineli, Diaw and Mills against Crawford who is not so effective this year, Turkoglu, Davis and the coach’s son Austin. Edge for the Spurs here.

I’m so excited about this series, both teams played there best basketball in the last 2 months of the season, that makes them ready for the playoffs. I think we will see the best basketball of all the firsts rounds here. I will say if it’s a 6 games series i go with the Spurs and if it goes to a 7th game i go with the Clippers.

#4 Portland Vs. #5 Memphis

  • Home Court : Memphis have it in this one, i think it will helps them is a close series, either team could win in the road but i will give a slight edge to Memphis here.
  • Coaching : Both coaches don’t have much playoffs experience as it is there second trip the the post season, but just because Portland did advance to the sencond roun last year i will give a sight edge to Portland in this one.
  • Starting Five : I hope that both teams are healthy and ready here, so at the PG it is even for me between Lillard and Conley, i call it even at the 3 position between Batum and Green, it is also even at the 4 position between Aldridge and Zebo, at the 5 position of course Marc Gasol, and i will take Afflalo over Lee at the 2 position. This how close it is here i will say that the starters are even here.
  • Bench : I don’t see much scoring coming from Portland bench Kaman and Blake not much of a scorers (that’s where Wes Matthews injury hurts a lot) on the other side between Udrih, Koufos and a well rested Carter will give Portland the edge.

We have an outside shooting team in Portland versus an inside team in Memphis, i think Portland will tired after 4 games against those hard workers that Memphis have, that’s why i’m going with Memphis in 6 games.

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NBA playoffs Preview : The East

Finally we are set for some playoffs basketball, after a crazy season and a crazy last night. The playoffs starts saturday so let’s see what is waiting for us in all first rounds series in the east.

#1 Atlanta Vs. #8 Brooklyn

  • Home court : Atlanta have home court advantage in this one and will make good use of it, they have some young unexperimented players coming of the bench like Schroder, and they will need home court comfort to play to the best of their abilities.
  • Coaching : I liked Hollins with Memphis but with this Brooklyn’s team i didn’t see any improvement from last year team, they are still playing more as individuals than as a team for me, too much isolation in offense and not much help in defense. Budenholzer he is just an NBA coach of the year candidate, he did improve this team very very much and he deserve all the credits for that, he may lack playoff experience as a head coach with his only appearance in the post season coming last year in his first season as head coach, but they did very well against Indiana last year taking them to 7 games making wining on the road. I give the edge in this one to Budenholzer because of his coaching abilities and also because of the Atlanta roster being more coach-able.
  • Starting Five : When i see the names Brooklyn looks good, but when i see them playing there is no synergy between them and one on one i don’t see them having an edge over Atlanta’s fives. Offensive and defensive flow a side and judging just on individuals this one is even for me. When i look at team plays Atlanta is far ahead.
  • Bench : Atlanta is 12 deep and the loss of Sefolosha may hurt them a little in defense, but they learned to play without him for long stretch when he was injured. I will give the edge in this one to Atlanta.

This series is team basketball versus isolation basketball. So i see Atlanta wining in an easy 4-0 or a 4-1.

#2 Cleveland Vs. #7 Boston

  • Home court : Cleveland have it, and for there coach, for Kyrie and for Love it will be good to have the first game at home, not that they need it but they will feel good having it. Against a young Boston team i give the edge to Cleveland in this one.
  • Coaching : Not much playoffs experience for both coaches, yes Blatt won the Euroleague before but i really need to wait and see for this one who will make the in game adjustments and between games adjustments. This one breaks even for me.
  • Starting Five : When you have King James you are having a pretty good head start, but Cleveland is not only Lebron they really are a complementary five, and they dominate Boston’s five talent wise and synergy wise. So edge goes to Cleveland.
  • Bench : Cleveland do not have this scoring spark coming of the bench someone like Isiah Thomas, but they have some very good shooting, and as long as they are keeping one of the 3 (Lebron, Kyrie, or J.R Smith) on the court they can generate enough offense. I’m giving an edge on the back-up point guard to Boston, but overall Cleveland’ bench is better.

This series is a young and still learning team against a championship contender. So it will be an easy win for Cleveland 4-0 or 4-1.

#3 Chicago Vs. #6 Milwaukee

  • Home Court : Chicago have it, but it will not help them as much as it will hurt a young Milwaukee team, and that’s why i’m giving an edge to Chicago for this one.
  • Coaching : Kidd have done a great job this season, but i can’t go against Thibodeau who have getting the most of his team year in and year out, and Chicago having more offensive punch doesn’t hurt him. I’m giving the edge to Chicago here.
  • Starting Five : Milwaukee will have the better match-up at the 3 position with Antetokoumpo against Dunleavy but that’s the only favorable match-up they have. The edge is in Chicago’s side in this one.
  • Bench : Chicago is too much for Milwaukee they have offense with Mirotic and Brooks, and defense with Gibson and Snell, against O.J Mayo, Bayless and Dudley, it’s just not enough. Edge goes for Chicago.

This series is youth versus experience and i’m going for Chicago in a well fought series that will ends in 6 games.

# 4 Toronto Vs. #5 Washington

  • Home Court : Toronto Have it and will need it badly in this series. The home crowd is great and if there is a game 7 it will helps them alot.
  • Coaching : Kasey kept his team together in tough moments this season even when players weren’t performing at there level (Terrence Ross, and Valanciunas), on the other side a saw a Washington team fall apart with not much cohesion. Toronto take the edge here.
  • Starting Five : If healthy and balling which is not the case here for both teams here, i like Washington more they can pound the ball down low and they have more shooting at the 2 and 3 positions. Washington have the edge in this one.
  • Bench : Sessions, Porter,Rusual Butler and Gooden is just not enough for me against Ross, Vasquez, Hansbrough and of course Lou Williams. Toronto got this one.

This series is so tricky, i hope i have a time machine so i can bring the teams that were balling in the early months of the regular season. Unfortunately there is no time machine and we are stuck with 2 teams that are not playing good basketball going to the playoffs. So this series is the very bad against the bad, and i’m going with the bad and that is Toronto in 7 games.

West Preview is coming tomorrow so stay tuned, and feel free to comment, share, like and subscribe.

NBA Playoffs : Last Call Last Call

It is the last game of the regular season and we still don’t know who’s in the playoffs and who’s not.

I will not talk about the seeding in the west from 2 to 6, i will only talk about the last playoffs spots in the east and in the west.

The East :

One spot is still up for grab between Brooklyn and Indiana, Brooklyn is hosting Orlando and needs this win to keep there playoff hopes alive. At the same time Indiana is going to Memphis having there destiny on there hands a win for them equals a playoff spot.

I see Indiana wining in Memphis and getting their tickets for the post season.

The West :

There is also a spot up for grab between Oklahoma City and New Orleans, if New Orleans at home wins against the Spurs they are in the playoffs, if not they are opening the door for Oklahoma city who is playing in Minnesota.

I see New Orleans loosing to the hot hot Spurs (the Spurs needs this one to get the 2 spot in the west), and at the same time Westbrook will get the win for his OKC.

Indiana and Oklahoma City will play the playoffs this year.

NBA : Crazy Ending

I was planning to talk playoff match-ups this late in the regular season, but 2 to 3 games to the end of the season i we really don’t know much about who are in the playoff and who aren’t, and not much about the seeding too. So let’s see what we really know about this crazy season ending.

The East :

  • Atlanta is the east champion.
  • Cleveland is locked to the 2 seat and Central Division champion.
  • Toronto and Chicago are fighting for 3rd they are tied but Chicago holds the tie breaker and still 2 games to play.
  • Toronto is Atlantic Division champion.
  • Washington is locked to the 5th seat.
  • Milwaukee is locked to the 6th seat.
  • This where the crazy thing begins, we have 3 teams fighting for 2 playoffs seat (Miami is unlikely to get in) Boston (38/42) is 1 game ahead of Brooklyn (37/43) and Indiana (37/43). Brooklyn holds the tie breaker over Indiana by winning 2 out 3 against them.

If you think that the east is crazy, wait to see how crazy it is in the west.

The West :

  • Golden State is the best team in the league
  • Portland is Northwest Division champion and locked to the 4th seat, but will not have home court advantage in the first round of the playoffs.
  • Dallas is locked to the the 7th seat.
  • New Orleans and Oklahoma City are tied for the 8th seat with 2 games to go. New Orleans holds the tie breaker over Indiana by winning 2 out 3 against them.
  • I have never seen 4 teams fighting for the 2nd seat this late in the season, we have San Antonio (55/26) a half game a head of 3 teams L.A. Clippers, Houston and Memphis all at (54/26). It will be crazy talking tie breakers here but we can say one thing is that Southeast Division champion (San Antonio, Houston or Memphis) is most likely to be 2nd in the west.

All that craziness i you know what, we still have the playoffs to come. It is a good time to be a NBA fan.

NBA Awards : The Winner is …

The regular season is almost finished, so let’s talk awards before we talk playoffs.

6th Man Award : Let’s start with the nominees, Lou Williams from the Toronto Raptors, Isiah Thomas from Phoenix/Boston and Aaron Brooks from the Chicago Bulls.

  • Aaron Brooks : He played 79 games (21 as a starter) averaging 11.6 pts, 3.1 ast and 2 reb in 23 minutes, he gives the Bulls a good sparks from the bench and he is one of the reasons shown by the bulls in offense.
  • Isiah Thomas : He played 64 games averaging 16.5 pts, 4.2 ast and 2.3 reb in 26 minutes, he was good in Phoenix and he is helping the Celtics getting to the playoffs.
  • Lou Williams : He played 77 games averaging 15.4 pts, 2 ast and 1.8 reb in 25 minutes, he strarted the season great, and faded just like his team the Raptors.

I have to go with the most consistent all season long and the one who impresses me the most.

And the winner is : Isiah Thomas

Rookie of the year : Let’s start with the nominees, Nerlen Noel from the Sixers, Andrew Wiggins from the Wolves and Nikolas Mirotic from the Bulls.

  • Nikolas Mirotic : He played 79 games averaging 10 pts, 1.2 ast and 5 reb in 20 minutes , he is the only one doing it as a rookie in a winning team, playing the 3 and the 4 position, he is really playing efficient and winning basketball, shooting 11 shoots for 10 points.
  • Nerlen Noel : He played 75 games averaging 10 pts, 1.2 ast and 8.1 reb in 31 minutes, he can be a good defender in this league, but nothing more.
  • Andrew Wiggins : He played 78 games averaging 16.7 pts, 1.9 ast and 4.4 reb in 36 minutes, he is taking 15 shoots for 16.7 points that’s very good but i have to say that he is playing alot of garbage time and against the end of bench players.

It is hard for me to give an award to someone who is playing for a bad bad team, i think that it is easier putting good stats when you don’t have any responsibility of winning, at the end of the day it’s a team sport if what you do is not serving the team it does not have much value in my eyes.

And The winner is : Nikolas Mirotic

Most Improve Player : Let’s start with the nominees, Denis Schroder from the Hawks, Jimmy Butler from the Bulls and Draymond Green from the Warriors.

  • Denis Schroder : he improved from last year playing 73 more games, 16 more minutes per game, going from 13.1 pts to 20.1 pts, from 1 rbd to 2.1 rbd and from 0 ast to 4.2 ast. He just move from a non factor player in a barely playoff team to an influential player on the best team in the east.
  • Jimmy Butler : he improved from last year going from 2.5 pts to 10 pts, from 4.9 rbd to 5.8 rbd and from 2.6 ast to 3.3 ast. He was already a great defender now he is one of the best 2 ways players at the 2 position if not the best.
  • Draymond Green : he improved from last year playing 64 more games as a starter, 10 more minutes per game, going from 6.2 pts to 11.8 pts, from 5 rbd to 8.2 rbd and from 1.9 ast to 3.7 ast. He improved his offense, his defense playing night in night out against the likes of Aldridge, Zebo and Griffins. This guy is gone from a limited player to important peace in the best team in the league.

And the winner is : Draymond Green

Defensive player of the year : Let’s start with the nominees, Pau Gasol from the Bulls, DeAndre Jordan from the Cllipers and Draymond Green from the Warriors. In this award i really don’t want to mention stats because defense is more than that. Beside the nominees i have a special mention for Rudy Gobert from the Jazz he was great post Allstar.

  • Pau Gasol : I’m tired of hearing people saying that he is soft, he is not. Pau is a tough big in this league he protects the rim, and a good defender one on one.
  • Draymond Green : Going against all the best fours in this league is pretty hard and he is doing in effectively in the best defensive team in the league.
  • DeAndre Jordan : He is dominant in paint making up for defensive mistakes from the 2 and the 3 position defenders that the Clippers have.

And the winner is : DeAndre Jordan

Coach of the year : Let’s start with the nominees, Steve Keer with the Warriors, Mike Budenholzer with the Hawks and Jason Kidd with the Bucks.

  • Jason Kidd : He took the worst team in the league or the second worst and make them a playoff team ranking 6th in the east. He traded for Carter Wlliams in the mid season it doesn’t make the Bucks better in the short term but he knows what he is doing and after a training camp with he’s point guard the team will be better.
  • Mike Budenholzer : We all compare them to the Spurs that they are a poor man Spurs, but they are more than that. This team is playing flawless basketball in offense and team defense with no go to guy. They made the jump from 8th last season to first in the east this season, it’s just great.
  • Steve Keer : The Warriors goes from 6th last year to first in the league in a wild wild west, and that’s not only because of the natural progress of the player. It is easy to get players to buy in in offense but he really impresses me by getting his team playing great defense. This team is just the best offensive and defensive team in the league.

And the winner is : Steve Keer

Last but not Least the Award:

MVP : For this one i will go for on two player just because they dis separate them selves from the rest. Lebron was good but not at an MVP level Westbrook was good too but in a team fighting for a playoff spot it’s not enough.

Let’s start with the nominees Stephen Curry from the Warriors and James Harden from the Rockets.

  • Stephen Curry : He played 77 games averaging 24 pts, 7.8 ast and 4.3 reb and 2 stl in 33 minutes, he is the best player in the best team in the league, beating his own record of 3’s made per season. He was already the best shooter in the game now he is doing it all but i have to say that he have a pretty good supporting cast behind him and if you take him of this team they are still a playoff team.
  • James Harden : He played 78 games averaging 27.5 pts, 6.9 ast and 5.7 reb and 1.9 stl in 37 minutes, he is the best offensive player in the league by far, for him is comes so easily and this year he is creating for his teammates more and he did improves a bit in defense. With all the injuries the Rockets had this season without Harden this team is a lottery team, they will finish behind Phoenix for sure.

This one is too close but the word valuable for me means alot.

And the winner is : James Harden

Picks : NBA April 9th

Hi guys, we have only two NBA games tonight, those are TNT games so i guess all teams will play them 100% even the Warriors, but i’m only giving one pick for tonight games.

Pick : CHI Bulls @ MIA Heats i’ going with the Heats at (+1)

Chicago is in their 2nd game of a back to back, and without saying it out loud i think they are tanking for the 4th place, they don’t want to face the Cavs in the 2nd round of the plaoffs. On the other side Miami is desperate for a win to keep their hopes alive to qualify for the playoffs that’s why i’m going with the Heat.

Picks : NBA April 8th

Hi guys let’s give away some NBA picks, it is the end of the season and things are getting tricky who is playing and who is resting, there are still some playoff implicatios but not for all teams so let’s do this.

Pick1 : BOS Celtics @ DET Pistons i’m going with Boston at (-1.5)

Boston really needs this win to stay in the 8th place they are only a half game in front of Miami, i think Celtics’s will preveals in this one.

Pick2 : PHX Suns @ DAL Mavs i’m going with the Mavs at (-8.5)

The Suns have a little chance to get to the playoffs, but they are just playing bad, the Mavs also not playing to their potentiel, but they had 3 days of rest and as coach Carisle said they need to play better in those last regular season games, so i dont expect them to rest anybody that’s why i’m going with them.