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.
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