NBA Playoffs shootaround: opening round preview and predictions

NBA Playoffs shootaround: opening round preview and predictions

The Bulls lost just one game in the playoffs en route to the Finals, where the Bulls held off the Seattle SuperSonics' efforts to overturn a 3-0 deficit, Rodman instrumental with 19 rebounds in the decisive Game 6.

"The chemistry was instant", said Danilo Gallinari ... a comment that was echoed by Doc Rivers in a late-season visit to Madison Square Garden at which he marveled at the way his youth-laden roster had become a solid defensive team with a bunch of players in their early 20s who were great listeners when it came to receiving tutelage from the coaching staff and Sixth Man of the Year shoo-in Lou Williams.

The NBA playoffs are here. Even with the 76ers' star-studded starting lineup, the team still played poorly whenever he was on the bench. "We'll see how it goes", Durant said, as quoted on Real GM.

The Warriors and Rockets are the two best teams in the league, in my opinion. By no means is that his fault, but the fact of the matter is Boston doesn't have time to wait for Hayward to be fully healthy.

The 2018-19 National Basketball Association regular season is closing up within a week, but the victor of Most Valuable Player (MVP) this year remains debatable.

The Golden State Warriors are set to begin their quest for a third straight title, and this time it's up to someone else to try to stop them. The point guard was easily the most important player on the Warriors in the regular season, considering how poorly the team played without him. In the previous three meetings, Orlando has averaged a tick below 113 points per game and took two of the four regular-season contests overall.

HBO Drops "Next Week On Game Of Thrones" Teaser
Nearly four million people stayed up halfway through the night -and many of them called in sick yesterday as a result. For starters, the wall is now in tatters, decimated by the Night King at the end of Game of Thrones season 7.

With LeBron James sitting out the playoffs for the first time in as long as anyone can remember, the NBA has a problem on its hands: Which team are they going to showcase to a national audience to prevent folks from spending their weekends watching The Masters? It's no accident they finished with the number one defense in the league and will have to instill their will and length to force turnovers and get out in transition.

Oklahoma City will take on the Milwaukee Bucks who possess an NBA-best 60-21 record meaning that a victory is far from assured. Every team in the playoffs has the talent to pull off an upset. That didn't happen a year ago because of an injury, but Irving will get his chance prove himself this time around. Additionally, Russ has always been a tough matchup for Lillard. 13 players reached 50 points in one game, the most in National Basketball Association history. But too often Embiid has had to sit out games due to injury.

The cities of Denver and San Antonio will witness a battle of two well-constructed teams. Also, guys like Sterling Brown and Tony Snell will see extended minutes until Brogdon returns and have shown the ability to step up when called upon.

Add it all up, and the Bucks could get $6,355,572 if they win the title. Butler has had a down year statistically, but he can boost his stock with a strong showing in the playoffs. The Jazz were seeded No. 4 when they won a 4-versus-5 series in 2007 and 2008 - both of those coming against Houston. The Rockets are led by MVP candidate James Harden, who led the league in points per game, and the ever-reliable Chris Paul. The Bucks are a truly elite defensive team that is top this year in team Defensive Rating, Team Rebounding, second in Blocks and were 1st in opponents field goal percentage. It was the last series of Mark Jackson's coaching career. This is the fourth Player of the Month honor for Antetokounmpo this season after he won the award for the months of February, December and October/November.

And now that he's moving better and looking a bit more explosive, Cousins needs to put together a solid performance in the playoffs to prove to teams that he's deserving of a big contract in free agency. Meanwhile, the Warriors remain the favorites out West.

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