The playoffs have started and the parity seems a bit one sided. Why is that? We will answer that question and much more on this weeks edition of the NBA Roundtable.
Here are the questions this week.
With Kevin Love now out for the next series and JR Smith likely going to be suspended, and assuming it is the Bulls that the Cavs face. Are the Bulls the favorites going into the 2nd round?
Steve: If it was one or the other, then I think no, the Cavs are still the team to beat in this series. With both of them out, then yes the Bulls have to be the favorites going into the series, as I think they are just toying with the Bucks right now. If Smith misses the first two games, which is expected, then the Bulls can easily get home court, if not even take the first two games of the series. However, they cannot get to over confident, because the Cavs do still have this LeBron guy who tends to do some damage to teams in the playoffs. The Bulls have so many weapons, and when they are on, they are very tough to beat, and it would too tough for a short handed Cavs team to beat this team.
David: It’s still close, but I’m taking the Cavs. The Cavs lost their 3rd best player, and to be honest, they need Mozgov more next round.
Chad: When the Bulls get past the Bucks; I think the Bulls do have to be the favorite to move on because of Kevin Love’s injury does to the rotation and scoring options on the floor for the Cavs
Why do you think the first round of the playoffs have been pretty much one sided, as we have already seen three sweeps?
Steve: Simple, with the exception of the Raptors just falling apart and not able to win a series, and assuming we see a fourth team with Memphis over Portland end in a sweep, Portland is not 100%, so that plays a factor. The other teams, the Celtics, and Pelicans, were just overmatched by much better teams. I actually called a sweep, which I rarely do in the first round for the Cavs, and I gave the Pelicans one game, and that game they blew, but the parity just is not there in the NBA until we get to the 2nd Round.
David: We always see sweeps in Round 1. We have a lot due to so many teams stinking on ICE vs the elite teams.
Chad: It’s hard to say for me I think a lot of were the matchups going into the playoffs and some of is good or bad play by teams to create the lopsided nature of the contests.
Which team have you been most impressed with in the first round of the playoffs?
Steve: Golden State. Even though no one in their right mind thought they would lose this series, it is the way they were able to come back in Game 3 that impressed me the most. Down 20 at the start of the fourth quarter, no one expected them to come out of there with a win. They are red hot right now, and look like they are easily the team to beat in the West.
David: The Bulls. Derrick Rose hasn’t had surgery yet, and Noah is playing well.
Chad: For me it was Golden State rallying from 20 down in NO to force OT and the win the game and sweep the series
Which team are you most surprised, that have underperformed in the post season?
Steve: Im a little surprised that the Mavericks have not done well, and as I type this are down 3-1. I actually picked them to win this series in 7 games. They are loaded with talent, and have a head coach who has been there before with multiple teams. I thought they would give the Rockets a series, though to credit Houston, they are playing their minds out also.
David: I’m guessing the obvious answer is Toronto, but I’m going with Houston. They should have blown Dallas out in four straight, but let them hang around in two games, and gave one away.
Chad: Honestly I thought with the record the Raptors put up during the regular season I thought the Raptors/Wizards would be more competitive at least 6/7 game I was kind of shocked at a sweep in that series.
Is having a good coach in the playoffs better than having the best players on a team?
Steve: Having a good coach is important in the playoffs because they have to know how to win, but let’s look at the logic. Would Phil Jackson have won a title without Jordan and Pippen? Or Kobe and Shaq? Would Eric Spolestra have won two championships without LeBron, Wade, and Bosh? I would think not, it takes a solid core of players to win a championship. It takes a good coach to help this core of players bond, but I think I would be able to win a title as a head coach with a Michael Jordan, LeBron James, or Kobe Bryant led squad.
David: Let’s see, Brad Stevens is a top 3 coach, and Blatt is looking to get fired as soon as LeBron says the word. How did that do?
Chad: I think great coaches that can make the adjustments on the fly can be great in the playoffs but the playoffs is where players are remembered forever for their accomplishments on the court with the pressure on them.
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