Hey gang. I have posted the standings for the bracket contest below but, as always, I will use this platform to initiate discussion on the NBA playoffs. You are encouraged to post your own thoughts/observations on the subject.
The 2nd round of the playoffs are over and very little about this round ran contrary to my (everyone's?) expectations.
Eastern Conference: I will limit this to as few words as possible as the East is a bit of a disaster right now.
Much has been said on the site about the Bulls/Heat series so I will not repeat too much. Let me just say that I am proud of the Bulls playoff performance and I think that a playoff series victory is a very big deal for them going forward. I am back in 2011-mode where I will be glad to see anyone but the Heat win.
The Knicks/Indiana series is now over with the Knicks playing much worse than advertised. Maybe it it the age/injuries. My initial thought was that Indiana would beat the hell out of them and make them lose there cool. This may or may not have happened but I will have to consult one of the seven people who actually watched some of these games to make sure.
As far as the ECF is concerned, I see Indiana roughing up the Heat quite a bit. I do not think that the Pacers have the scoring to actually pull off the series victory but I think that they will seriously expose Miami's smallball lineups.
Heat in 6
The Spurs/Warriors series went just as expected. When the Warriors requited 37 minutes to inbound the ball at the end of the Nuggets series, it was clear to me that they lacked the ability to execute required to make a deep playoff run. Contrast that with the Spurs where it is totally unconscious for every player, from Tim Duncan down, to make the extra pass and find the wide open shot. Their attack was relentless, especially compared to the Warriors. Now, I too am human. I loved watching Steph Curry nail 30 footers. That said, if the W's are going to take the next step, they must emulate the Spurs and learn to execute. They need more of a defensive identity and need more and better ball movement on offense (things that the Spurs excel at). Hopefully they can pull this off as they will then be very interesting going forward.
I did not watch much of the Griz/OKC series due to OKC's weakened state.
As far as the WCF goes, this could go either way in my eyes. On the one hand the Spurs look like a well-oiled machine. That said, the Griz are hot right now and are really delivering with their bruising front-court. I see this series going to 6 or 7 with the Griz being the eventual winners.
Griz in 6 (only because if it goes to 7 I will have to change to the Spurs due to home-court advantage).
I said this last time but I have the Griz winning it all (if I could redo my bracket). I will revise this by saying that I think that whoever comes out of the West will win it all. My reasoning is that the Heat's game-plan is to force their opponent into awkward match-ups/positioning. That is all well and good if the only sacrifice that you must make is a mildly hot night from Carlos Boozer. If you have Shane Battier and Chris Bosh guarding ZBo and Gasol, you will pay. The same is true for the Spurs. Throw in that the Spurs have a large number of wing defenders to throw at LeBron James and I think that the Heat winning the championship is not the forgone conclusion that seems to be the conventional wisdom.
Alright gang. That's it. The Bulls are out but they went down valiantly and are poised to be real contenders next year. I loved this team and am very proud of them. Go Bulls! Please discuss the playoffs at length. Post-away.
|Patty Mills, Juicy Dengler||180||Spurs||View|
|xkellenx's bracket, xkellenx||160||Heat||View|
|THEKILLERWHALE's Bracket, THEKILLERWHALE||145||Heat||View|
|Otherface NBA Bracket, otherface||145||Heat||View|
|JGB bracket, JimmehGBuckets||135||Heat||View|
|This Bracket Stinks, windycitywarrior||135||Spurs||View|
|It's gonna happen!!!!, masputo||135||Bulls||View|
|The worst bracket, metalkiwis||125||Thunder||View|
|I-hope-not bracket, odwallajuicish||125||Heat||View|
|Spyder007's Bracket, Spyder007||115||Bulls||View|
|Doshi 1, Doshi||115||Heat||View|
|The Butler did It's Bracket, The Butler Did It||115||Heat||View|
|tuff-gong's baracket, tuff-gong||110||Bulls||View|
|Dmes' Bracket, Dmes||110||Heat||View|
|Shortkid99's Bracket, Eric Feigin||110||Heat||View|
|Fake Bracket for Test Purposes., JDW||100||Heat||View|
|Mitch Stevens Bracket, Mitch Stevens||85||Clippers||View|
|B Smurf, Basketball Smurf||85||Heat||View|