DAY NINETEEN -- The Heat look to salvage home court in Miami -- likely -- and the Clippers look to steal one in Phoenix -- certain.
Nets at Heat, 8:00 PM, TNT
Thoughts: The defense for the Heat has to improve; the Nets three starting perimeter players all scored at least twenty points in game one. Poor perimeter defense leads to penetration(among other things), penetration leads to Shaq in foul trouble, Shaq in foul trouble... well, that's an obvious one. Shaq needs to keep himself out of foul trouble(a couple of his fouls were offensive) and the Heat need to improve defensively, primarily in transition. This is a tough call for me, but I got Miami tonight.
Clippers at Suns, 10:30 PM, TNT
Thoughts: Phoenix showed us(read: me) why their style of play has gotten them as far as it has. Despite getting a 4-0 dropped on their ass by Elton Brand, the Suns managed to scurry to a win, pushing the tempo as usual. 130 points is a tough pace to keep up, even for the Suns. This series may end up being closer than I first predicted, but the Clippers will still win and Elton Brand is still unguardable.
One thing that was evident in game one was that Boris Diaw and Shawn Marion caused as much of a mismatch with their quickness as Brand and Kaman do with their size. It will be interesting to see how these match-ups play out through the series, but in my experience size always beats quickness in the post through the rigors of a playoff series.
*all times Eastern
Jordan's Playoff Picks so far:
30/42 - 71%