NBA Playoffs Preview

The NBA Playoffs are sure to be filled with many exciting series and some that will disappoint.

Jacob Rutzick, Staff Writer

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This year’s NBA playoffs are just around the corner so it’s time to breakdown the most exciting matchups for this year. Every year there are great series that everyone knows going in is going to be great, and there are sleeper series that surprise everyone like the Bucks Celtics series. We are going to go through my picks for the best potential series, best sleeper series, worst series, and a series everyone thinks will be great that won’t be.

My pick for best series is an easy one. The potential Warriors Rockets second round matchup. Last years western conference playoffs felt as if two giants were preparing to fight it out for seven games. The two teams did not disappoint, seven great games with a thrilling ending. In both games six and seven the Rockets blew a double digit first half lead and in game seven they famously missed twenty seven straight threes. Chris Paul got injured and James Harden couldn’t carry the load. This year the Rockets got off to a slow start but since December Harden has been playing like a mad man as he became the fifth player ever to average over 35 points per game. The Warriors have had a rocky year filled with a fight or two and the looming threat of Durant leaving in free agency. However, they are the number one seed and they ended the season playing great. I think the Warriors take the series in six games. Harden can’t sustain his iso heavy game for the playoffs and Chris Paul’s hamstring is always a threat to fall apart.

The best sleeper series, in my opinion, is the Sixers Nets first round matchup. The Nets have been the most surprising team this year, D-Lo making an unexpected jump to all-star status. Russel, Dinwiddie, Harris, and Kuruks have all had good years and the Nets have a surprisingly deep bench. The Sixers have the star power, but are very starter heavy because they gutted their roster twice for Jimmy Buckets and Tobias Harris. The Nets’ bench is the key to them making this series competitive. I will still take the Sixers, but in a hard fought six games. Stars matter, especially in the playoffs and the sixers have too much of it for the Nets.

The worst series are the most forgettable ones and the Warriors Clippers first round matchup will put most people to sleep. The series is just a formality before the thrilling Warriors Rockets rematch. The Clippers somehow managed to make the playoffs with their best player being Lou Williams. They have no star to drive their organization and stand no chance against the powerhouse Warriors. This will be a quick sweep and will seem as if it never happened at all. I expect Durant to dominate the series as he has been coasting these last few weeks gearing up for the playoffs.

A series people think will be great that honestly won’t be is the Celtics Pacers first round matchup. The Pacers aren’t the most exciting team to watch and the Celtics disfunction makes them a drag as well. I expect the Celtics to take it in five or six games with a few blowouts and not many close games. The Celtics definitely might fall apart and lose the series in six, but I find that unlikely. If anyone can get this dysfunctional group hype for the playoffs and playing well it is Brad Stevens.

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