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Owen’s NBA Playoffs Overview and Predictions

Saturday, April 16 — The NBA Playoffs have tipped off and it’s prediction time.

April 21, 2022

After an exciting and arguably surprising end to the 2021-2022 NBA season, the playoffs are finally here. Some headlines throughout the season entail LeBron and the Los Angeles Lakers missing the playoffs, James Harden ending up in Philly, the Memphis Grizzlies showing out for a two seed in the Western Conference, and the Minnesota Timberwolves and New Orleans Pelicans solidifying a playoff spot. 

 

LeBron James (SFGate)

 

And with all this happening, it led us to 16 teams competing for one trophy. Here’s the matchups for both the Eastern and Western Conferences.

 

Eastern:

 

  1. (1) Miami vs. (8) Atlanta
  2. (4) Philadelphia vs. (5) Toronto 
  3. (3) Milwaukee vs. (6) Chicago
  4. (2) Boston vs. (7) Brooklyn

 

Western:

 

  1. (1) Phoenix vs. (8) New Orleans
  2. (4) Dallas vs. (5) Utah
  3. (3) Golden State vs. (6) Denver
  4. (2) Memphis vs. (7) Minnesota 

 

Owen’s Analysis

 

Firstly, I’d like to look at some underrated or lower-seeded teams that I can see doing some damage in the playoffs. The obvious one that jumps out to me are the Brooklyn Nets. The KD/Kyrie tandem is arguably the most potent offensive scoring duo of all time. Injuries and trades shook up this team’s regular season a bit, which may be why they are a seven seed in the playoffs, but I just can’t see Kevin Durant (the best player on the planet), getting sent home in the first round. If the Nets do win this series, we will likely see a rematch of last year’s tremendous Eastern Conference Finals against the Bucks.

 

In the Western Conference, I think the seven seed is also one to watch out for. The Timberwolves, ever since Kevin Garnett left, have been a rarity in the playoffs, but they are back now and boy do they have some firepower. Anthony Edwards is one of the most talented players in the league, and Karl Anthony-Towns is one of the best shooting big-men of all time. Those two paired with D’Angelo Russell creates one of the best ‘up and coming’ trios in the league. 

 

Minnesota Timberwolves (Dunking With Wolves)

 

Conference Finals 

 

 I’ll start with the Eastern Conference. I see the Conference Finals being kind of up in the air. I really like both Brooklyn and Milwaukee, but the only way they can face off is in the Conference Semifinals. So, in my opinion, I see that series going to seven games, but Milwaukee ultimately pulls it out. On the other side of the Eastern side, I see the Heat having a fairly easy time making it to the Conference Finals. I think they handle Atlanta easily, and then win against Philly in six games.

 

Now onto the Western Conference. I see this going a lot of ways, so it was hard for me to get a solid prediction. I think the Golden State Warriors make a big return to the Western Conference Finals. Klay Thompson is finally healthy and Jordan Poole has made the guard position for the Warriors even better. I also think that the Suns make back-to-back Western Conference Finals appearances. They dominated all year, and I don’t think it’ll go differently in the playoffs. 

 

Golden State Warriors (Essentially Sports)

NBA Champions?

 

The moment you have all been waiting for…my NBA champion prediction (cue the drum roll).

 

The Milwaukee Bucks will repeat as the 2021-2022 NBA Finals Champions. Giannis is unstoppable, and they basically have the same team as last season’s squad. Jrue Holiday is a gamer, and the role players surrounding them fit in like a perfect puzzle piece. 

 

Milwaukee Bucks (Los Angeles Times)

 

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