Well, apparently, I gave the Celtics too much credit. A late season collapse (egged on by Von Wafer) has enabled them to slip to the third-seed, so they take on the Knicks, not the 76ers.
It’s the curse of 2011, I tells ya!
Either way, now ESPN and other sports writers are putting the Celtics on “upset alert”.
The sketchy Knicks against the Boston Celtics. I hate to seem biased (even though I am a bit), but I can’t really see this ending up in the Knicks favor. It’s a seven-game format, meaning that either the Celtics or the Knicks have to win four of those games to advance. I really don’t think the Knicks can win four games against the Celtics, even though they are a talented team. There’s too many problems with the Knicks right now, and this Celtics incarnation have been dominant at the Garden in the last few years. I don’t think it will be a sweep, in any sense. I’m thinking 4-2.
Miami and Philadelphia. This is kind of a head-scratcher now. The Heat are on a roll right now, which hasn’t always worked to their advantage this season. Again, I don’t think Philly can pull an upset here. They have the talent, but I think it would take some off-nights from LeBron and Wade to really give Philly a chance. I just don’t see it. I want to, but I just don’t see it.
So, now the Eastern bracket looks a bit like this.
6 New York
I apparently got my two and three-seeds mixed in the West too. The Lakers grabbed the two seed from Dallas on a tie-breaker, which I really have no difinitive opinion about. The three-seed is still good and gives a team a decent possibility of geting home-court advantage during the Conference Semi’s or Finals. So, let me update a bit.
The Lakers get the Hornets in round one. The Lakers hould take this series easily, but I think they’ll drop at least one, since the team ego gets inflated and ultimately gets them into pickle situations. Lakers win 4-1. I’ll give the Hornets a bit of credit.
Mavericks-Blazers. Hmm… this could be troublesome. Jason Kidd isn’t as durable or quick as he used to be and the Mavs don’t really have a completely solid guy in the five-spot, but neither do the Blazers, since the Greg Oden experiment backfired miserably. Shooting is key here, as both teams have players too quick for most defenses to stop. I also think Rick Carlisle has a coaching advantage. Dirk has to hit shots, Jet needs to fly off the bench, and the Mavshave to pass the ball. They’re tied for first in assists in the NBA this year. They really need to show that to move past Portland.
Now, the West looks a little something like this.
1 San Antonio
2 LA Lakers
7 New Orleans
4 Oklahoma City
Ladies and gentlemen: the 2011 NBA Playoffs are about to begin!