Thursday, 19 April 2007

NBA Playoff Predictions

With the long, grinding season over, we've finally reached the NBA playoffs. To be honest, I found this NBA regular season to be pretty dull for the most part, but we've got a lot of great playoff matchups. Here's my picks:


(1) Detroit Pistons vs. (8) Orlando Magic
The Magic just aren't playing very good basketball right now. They've got some good parts, but I think Detroit is just too talented and too experienced. Magic might steal 1, but Detroit is number 1 seed for a reason. PISTONS IN 5.

(4) Miami Heat vs. (5) Chicago Bulls
I think Dwyane Wade is great, but I don't really like this matchup for Miami. The Bulls basically gave Miami everything they wanted last year in the first round, and now the Bulls are better and the Heat are worse than they were. If Wade was at full strength, maybe. But as it is, I think the Bulls will be too strong, especially defensively, against the Heat. BULLS IN 6.

(3) Toronto Raptors vs. (6) New Jersey Nets
Everyone seems to be picking the Nets here, but I'm not so sure. I think the Raptors are the better defensive team, and they're a little more balanced. Plus, the Nets bench it just so bad. Either way, it will definitely be a tight series, and if I were a Raptors fan, I would boo Vince Carter mercilessly. RAPTORS IN 7.

(2) Cleveland Cavaliers vs. (7) Washington Wizards
I feel robbed. Instead of LeBron vs. Wade in round 1, we get this. I can just about guarantee it won't be as exciting as the series last year between these 2 teams. CAVS IN 4.


(1) Dallas Mavericks vs. (8) Golden State Warriors
Interesting matchup here for obvious reasons... Golden State has performed very well against Dallas this year, and the Warriors coach is Don Nelson, who is pretty familiar with this Mavs team. Still, let's not get carried away. There's a reason the Mavs won 67 games. MAVS IN 5.

(4) Houston Rockets vs. (5) Utah Jazz
Jazz have a very solid starting lineup with the potential to cause problems for Houston. Deron Williams is going to be really tough to guard, and Mehmet Okur can pull Yao Ming away from the basket. But this is a really good Houston team... they have the two stars, tons of great role players, and they just do what it takes to win. As I've said many times, the Rockets actually remind me a lot of the Heat last year as a team. ROCKETS IN 6.

(3) San Antonio Spurs vs. (6) Denver Nuggets
Obviously the Nuggets star power is enough to cause anyone problems, but this is San Antonio we're talking about. They're great defensively, and I think they should be able to slow down a good but slightly predictable Denver attack. I think Bowen will frustrate Carmelo some, and the duo of Parker/Ginobili will be able to stay with AI enough to not let him take over enough games to win the series. This should be very entertaining, but the Spurs are a little too good. SPURS IN 6.

(2) Phoenix Suns vs. (7) Los Angeles Lakers
This was probably the best first round series last year, but I don't think we'll see a repeat of that. For one, Phoenix is better. They've got some guy named Amare Stoudemire that should be able to dominate down low. That's even bigger because the Lakers are not as good inside as they were last year. The series should still be entertaining because of the Kobe vs. the Suns aspect, but I don't think it will be as good as last year. SUNS IN 5.