NBA Playoffs: Weekend Preview

I hate the second round of the playoffs this year. Some series aren’t competitive. (Especially in the Cleveland v Toronto and GSW v Utah series). Washington v Boston has been very chippy but my Wizards are 2 – 1 down. Houston v San Antonio has also been competitive. Check out the run down:

Wizards v Celtics: I did a review of game one on Monday and I expected the Wizards to tighten up in game 2. They did to an extent and John Wall dropped like 40 and 11 but Isaiah Thomas has other ideas. He came through with 53 points! I definitely didn’t see that coming and the Celtics gutted that one out in overtime.

The series moved back to Washington and I knew the Wizards would win. Since December or so, one thing you could count on was Washington being solid at the Verizon Centre. What I didn’t see coming was the chippyness of the game. There was some animosity between both teams during the regular season but yesterday, things boiled over. Kelly Oubre was ejected after Olynyk baited him in to a shove and Brandon Jennings should have done the same to Terry Rozier but he played himself and both he and Rozier got ejected.

The game itself was very scrappy. Isaiah Thomas’ newly installed veneers had to be readjusted at half time. Finally, the Wizards found an answer for him and held him to only 13 points. Oh guess who was back for the Wizards? Ian Mahinmi finally decided he was going to earn some of the $16 Million he is owed this season. Hopefully he and Markieff Morris can give the Celtics something else to think about. What happened to Trey Burke’s career by the way? Remember when he was trending up in Utah? He was even their starting point guard for a second over there. At this rate he won’t be in the league next year – He’s only 24 years old!

Houston v Spurs: I saw a report on the ringer (great website by the way) which talked up Houston as being the team with the best chance to prevent a GSW v Cleveland finals. Jalen Rose has the Rockets in 7, Zach Lowe has the Rockets in 6.  Before the series started, I had the Spurs in 7 (although I like the Rockets better) because the Rockets are really heavily reliant on Harden, I felt if Kawhi guarded Harden for most of the games, that will wrap it up. I haven’t seen any of the two games (Hopefully I’ll catch game 3 tonight) but the Spurs were atrocious in game one but they woke up in game 2. The series heads back to Houston and with the teams tied, I think Houston has the upper hand especially because Tony parker is out for the rest of the playoffs.

Allow me to digress slightly – since I started watching basketball, I think this season has been the worst for injuries. That’s inclusive of the regular season and post season which is very ironic because all the teams are more conscious about the science of healing etc. Back to the series.

Tony  Parker being out is a big blow. He is getting old and his influence on the team for sure is reducing so on the one hand you could say it won’t affect them that much (even if he’s played reasonably well in the playoffs). Paddy Mills is no slouch. He can ball! I think San Antonio are in with a shout but Houston are in the driving seat. I think the winner of game 3 will win the series.

Cleveland v Toronto: Toronto have rolled over. I am disgusted by them. Kyle Lowry is injured again. I really thought they’d give Cleveland a fight. I’m not wasting any more words on this series because at best it will end in 5.

GSW v Utah: Just like Toronto, Utah are not ready. They will get swept. To be fair to them, they are trying but they just don’ t have that extra gear which is why they should not even be in this round. The Clippers should have taken them out (the Clippers would probably have been swept anyway to be fair). I wonder what the point is if there is such a big gulf between Golden State and Cleveland.

We might as well fast forward because it’s not fun when you can predict the outcome.

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