The NBA Playoffs are nearly upon us, so there is only one thing left to do - predict. But please, lets do it quickly.
Recently I was asked, in regards to the Detroit Pistons winning a league best 64 games, "what else do they have to do?" My reply:
Win 16 more.
It was a simple and uncomplicated answer. Truthfully, there are no complicated answers in the playoffs. The playoffs are over analyzed, yes, but "analysis" in the modern sense is a way to fill a half hour TV program with opinions that would take five minutes to divulge without commercials, annoying intro graphics, and the self absorbed analyst who unnecessarily expounds on every elementary observation on a game or series.
Seven game series. Win four. Times four.
Win 16 more.
That is the NBA playoffs in a nutshell. There is much to be said of atmosphere and dramatics, but such things are insubstantial and not fit for true analysis. If you want to know the playoffs "feel" then watch the games or attend in person. You don't need me or anyone else to tell you how somethings feels or how exciting it is.
"But who will when?" you ask.
Well dammit I don't know, but because you and the basketball loving world at large demand an answer to this question, I'll try my best to suffice. For your sake more than mine, I'll do so quickly.
San Antonio Spurs(1) vs. Sacramento Kings(8)
Winner: San Antonio
Why: Tim Duncan won't be stopped; Bibby won't get help offensively.
Dallas Mavericks(4) vs. Memphis Grizzlies(5)
Why: The Clippers decided to "rest" their better players down the regular season stretch to avoid this matchup with the Mavs. Jason Terry goes bonkers on Bobby Jackson, Chucky Atkins, or anyone else they throw at him.
Denver Nuggets(3) vs. Los Angeles Clippers(6)
Winner: Los Angeles Clippers
Why: See above. Clippers have depth; Nuggets do not.
Phoenix Suns(2) vs. Los Angeles Lakers(7)
Why: Kobe Bryant is capable of scoring 100 points in a single game... but not 120.
Detroit Pistons(1) vs. Millwaukee Bucks(8)
Why: Are you kidding me? They're the fucking Pistons.
Cleveland Cavaliers(4) vs. Washington Wizards(5)
Why: LeBron nearly averages a triple-double. Gilbert Arenas shoots his team out of the series.
New Jersey Nets(3) vs. Indiana Pacers(6)
Winner: New Jersey
Why: The Nets have peaked at the right time. No Ron Artest means Vince Carter, Richard Jefferson, or both will go nuts.
Miami Heat(2) vs. Chicago Bulls(7)
Why: Shaq vs. Tyson Chandler. The end.