NBA 2011 Playoff Predictions
Playoff tree and predictions. Will Miami make it through the east? Will the Champs return in the West?
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Chicago Bulls (#1) vs. Indiana Pacers (#8)
Derrick Rose is the league’s MVP. The scary thing is…he’s not focused on that. He is focused on helping his team win every single game they play. Chicago has the best defense in the league and with Boozer and Noah playing efficient basketball, the Bulls might just return the championship trophy to the city that gave us the greatest basketball player to ever live. The pacers don’t match up well in the front court and no one on their team has a shot at guarding Rose. I see this series being a statement round for the Bulls. We’re hungry!
MY PREDICTION: Bulls Win Series 4-0 (Yup! Get your brooms out)
Miami Heat (#2) vs. Philadelphia 76ers (#7)
So I actually think this will be a good test for the Miami Heat (I would have preferred to see them play the Knicks but beggars can’t be choosers). The 76ers don’t have the athletic ability or basketball talent to keep up with the Miami Heat but they play as a team and they play smart basketball which is what has for a period during the season frustrated the Heat. If Philadelphia has breakout production from the bench, Miami could be in for a longer than expected 1st round.
MY PREDICTION: Heat Win Series 4-2 (I think Philly can steal two games)
Boston Celtics (#3) vs. New York Knicks (#6)
The New York Knicks are 2nd best in the league in Points Per Game at around 106. However they are also 3rd worst in Points Allowed Per Game. Against a Boston team who prides themselves on defense, I think the Knicks will struggle but I do think that energy from the crowds will boost their efforts on the defensive end to make a somewhat interesting contest.
MY PREDICTION: Celtics Win Series 4-2 (I think they’ll take it in six unless they lose focus in which case they might very well lose the series; this one will be one to watch definitely)
Orlando Magic (#4) vs. Atlanta Hawks (#5)
The Orlando Magic will not play up to their potential which is why this series will be interesting. Atlanta is entering the playoffs on a six game skid. However, they seem to have the Magic’s number and have won 3 of the 4 meetings this season. If Dwight Howard keeps his composure and stays locked in the Magic should take the series. The key word in the last sentence was “IF”.
MY PREDICTION: Orlando Escapes 4-3 (I think the series will come down to the wire)
San Antonio Spurs (#1) vs. Memphis Grizzlies (#8)
The Spurs will have their hands full. Zach Randolph is averaging a double-double with 20 points and 12 rebounds per game. Plus, the young talent of the Grizzlies might run the Spurs right out of their exceptional half-court offense. If the Spurs big three play well, so too will the rest of the squad.
MY PREDICTION: Spurs Win Series 4-1
L.A. Lakers (#2) vs. New Orleans Hornets (#7)
If the Lakers remain focused, they should take this series easily. However they have a problem showing up when no challenge is present. A Hornets victory might end up being a needed wake up call. This series (Hornets missing their other all-star in West) should be a sweep but we’ve all seen the Lakers lose their edge so IDK.
MY PREDICTION: Lakers Win Series 4-0 (Or they should)
Dallas Mavericks (#3) vs. Portland Trail Blazers (#6)
Okay everyone from ESPN to FOX sports has this matchup being pegged as the “most likely upset” but to be honest I see the Mavericks taking it in five. If the Trailblazers can steal one of the 1st two in Dallas, I would be thoroughly impressed. Aldridge will have to put in a monster offensive performance to keep the Blazers in the game with a playoff focused Dallas Mavericks team but only time will tell.
MY PREDICTION: Dallas Wins Series 4-1 (They call good series, I don’t see it)
Oklahoma City Thunder (#4) vs. Denver Nuggets (#5)
Kevin Durant is a phenom. Russell Westbrook is developing as a superstar point guard. The Oklahoma City Thunder are becoming a pretty darn good basketball team. However this is not a “give-me”. The Nuggets are number one in points per game this season and they’ve played exceptionally well since letting go their two all-stars. With exceptional play from Nene and the recently rehabilitated Kenyon Martin, the Nuggets may very well shock the Thunder.
MY PREDICTION: Thunder Wins Series 4-3 (I think Kendrick Perkins will be the needed difference on the boards for the Thunder to pull this one out but don’t be surprised to see the Nuggets take this one if they do)
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