NBA Playoffs Thoughts

I take away a few things before the NBA Playoffs start. First, ESPN is promoting a NBA Playoffs Bracket. It's almost like they're paying homage to that great March sporting event that also uses a bracket... the BCS. Oh wait. It's exactly like that, well except for the BCS part. Why? Because people love brackets. It's a simple fact. Brackets work and people can follow along easily.

Second, look at the parity in the Western conference. Every team has between 50 and 57 wins. Does anyone out there really want to play 7 seed San Antonio? I know I wouldn't want my team playing against them. They're loaded with experience and have been playing their best ball lately. Oklahoma City made the playoffs and I don't see them not making the playoffs for a long time now. They're young and talented, and oh by the way, have tons of cap space too. Once they left Seattle they became a perfectly run franchise. The Lakers should get by them, but I don't think it will be as easy as some talking heads.

Over in the East, it's definitely top heavy. Atlanta should scare people, but because they have to go through Orlando to advance, I think their season ends in the second round. I think the Cavs will have a harder time in the first round against the Bulls than they will in the second round against either the Celtics or Heat. Should the Cavs and Magic match up in the conference finals, I think the winner of that series will win the whole thing. While the Cavs have home court and a better record, they really need to be concerned about the Magic. The past week the Cavs have rested their starters and proceeded to lose 4 in a row. I guess we'll see if they can just turn it back on come Saturday. For their sake (and mine) I hope they can. Shaq has been out for 6 weeks and the Cavs will need to have him fully integrated before a series with Dwight Howard comes along. The entire Cavs offseason was predicated on just such a matchup, so we'll get to see if Shaq can do more than slow down Howard, and we'll see if the added length of Jamario Moon and Anthony Parker can contain Rashard Lewis. It should be a better matchup than last year.

Also, the freaking Cavs need to win it this year. For my sanity.

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