Indiana Pacers vs Cleveland Cavaliers
It's a gonna be a wild one when the Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers take on Victor Oladipo and the Pacers! The pacers have been a pleasant surprise all season with high energy play and an efficient offence they will look to stifle James and the Cavs at every turn. However when King James shows up in the playoffs all bets are off as his dominance on the court is more then capable of stealing an entire series.
Series Tied (1-1)
Lebron James. Lebron James. Lebron James. The whole NBA revolves around one name and that includes this series. It's an easy debate to win if I said, if the King wasn't on the Cavaliers, this roster would easily become one of the worst teams in the NBA. Not a lot of young talent, a lot of solid names who created their status while being apart of weak teams with weak rosters. But on a team where the King tends to give everyone a "slice of the pie" you're once great value is now lowered. Or you're once low value is now raised.
Everyone becomes an even strength role player in the light of James. We saw this with Kyrie (which lead to his departure) and Isaiah Thomas (which lead to his departure,) as well as Iman Shumpert and JR Smith who became names all of sudden everyone knew about. But without a solid helper, who is willing to accept his role as "2nd banana" Lebron James wont be able to accomplish much with this band of misfits. Meanwhile, team unity has seemed to be a topic of conversation all-season long.
With the roster acting as a revolving door for players who don't fit James' mold and with Lebron unwilling to commit to Cleveland long-term. Everything seems in disarray and it's hard not to pass on this series and start focusing on Lebron's decision come this off-season. Where many will assume he will want to replicate Irving, by picking a fresh organization surrounded by young studs. After all, Lebron maybe super-human, he can only carry a team so far during the post-season.
Forget about a Cavs-Warriors rematch, if Lebron doesn't corral his squad in game 2, this series is going to the 2nd round fast.
Although, credit must be given to where it's due. Victor Oladipo who will, most likely be the NBA's Most Improved Player by unanimous decision has changed the face of the Pacers organization. They haven't been in the spotlight all-season long. And Oladipo is fixing to change that, by beating the Cavs in 4 quick games.
San Antonio Spurs Vs Golden State Warriors
Steph Curry and the defending champion Golden State Warriors will get the playoffs started in style, as they take on the most successful franchisee of the past decade the San Antonio Spurs. Despite their past successes the Spurs have stumbled a little bit this season, putting up less then stellar offensive numbers and wins. Will The Spurs be able to right there offensive woes, Or will the defending champion Warriors continue their dominance into the playoffs and on to the second round? Get the full preview here!
Washington Wizards Vs Toronto Raptors
DeMAr DeRozan and the Toronto Raptors feel that they don't get the recognition that they deserve. They have the chance to change all that with a strong first round showing against the stellar backcourt of John Wall and Bradley Beal and the Washington Wizards. With a strong bench that has tonnes of depth and a desire to prove the sporting world wrong look For the Raptors to make a strong statement in the first round. Full Preview Here
Miami Heat vs Philadelphia 76ers
With 2 wins a piece in the season series expect lots of fireworks as the Miami Heat square off with the Philadelphia 76ers.The 76ers will use their speed and defence to try to stifle the grind em out style of The Heat. The Heat is hoping to rely on the vast playoff experience that they have on the bench to create some opportunities against the faster and younger 76ers. Every meeting between these teams has been close this season, so expect a very tight series.
New Orleans Pelicans Vs Portland Trail Blazers
In what might be the closest match up of the first round the New Orleans Pelicans meet up with the Portland Trail Blazers. The Blazers have been playing pretty good basketball lately thanks in large part to Damian Lillard, who has been a big reason for their late season success. As for the Pelicans they have relied a great deal on the play of Anthony Davis who has kept his team focused and moving forward towards the playoffs! Get the preview here!
Milwaukee Bucks Vs Boston Celtics
It will be the Milwaukee Bucks who try to play the spoiler as the take on a beat up Boston Celtics team. With the lose of Gordon Hayward and Kyrie Irving the Celts are going to have to dig deep to find more offensive production from the bench. The Bucks however will have to rely on their defensive play and some big games from Giannis Antetokiunmpo if they expect to hold off the Celts and secure the upset. Get The Full Preview Here!
Indiana Pacers vs Cleveland Cavaliers
It's a gonna be a wild one when the Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers take on Victor Oladipo and the Pacers! The pacers have been a pleasant surprise all season with high energy play and an efficient offence they will look to stifle James and the Cavs at every turn. However when King James shows up in the playoffs all bets are off as his dominance on the court is more then capable of stealing an entire series. Get The Full Series Preview Here!
Utah Jazz vs Oklahoma City Thunder
Russell Westbrook and the Thunder hope to roll in to Utah and walk away with the W against the Jazz and one of the most standout Rookies of this season Donovan Mitchell. Mitchell and the Jazz have been on fire in the last half of the season and they hope that they can use that momentum to carry them on to the second round. Will it be the Star studded line up of the Thunder or the young upstarts of the Jazz who prevail? Get The Preview Here!
Minnesota Timberwolves vs Houston Rockets
So after an emotional roller coaster for the Timberwolves they where able to win their play-in game and advance to the playoffs. The bad news is James Harden and the Houston Rockets are who they will be facing! Harden has had a stellar season leading the Rockets to the best record in the NBA this season, and with the way they have been playing all season long it would be hard to imagine anything but a Houston victory. With that said, you never do know when it comes to The NBA playoffs, just look at Virginia's first round upset in the Ncaa Tournament. It's never over till the final buzzer sounds.