Updated: May 31
Previewing the NBA Conference Finals
Written by: Andrew Felton
It's conference finals time, after seeing two games go the distance in the semifinals, one comfortable win and a series sweep, let's take a look at what to expect in the conference finals.
Milwaukee Bucks vs Atlanta Hawks (Hawks Lead 1-0)
The Atlanta Hawks can enter this conference final with a nothing to lose attitude. Not many would have predicted the Hawks to get this far, but with a young team led by their star man, Trae Young, who plays without fear and has the ability to put up 30+ points, alongside 10+ assists every game, with a very efficient, well rounded, strong team on defense, allowing confidence to rise in a very impressive team, looking to each the NBA finals. We can not forget that this Hawks team were ranked #5 in the NBA’s seedings this season and have not reached a finals since 1961, so this team needs to and will be respected by a very good Milwaukee Bucks team.
With this said, the Hawks do have a mighty task in front of them, trying to stop a Milwaukee Bucks team who have beaten last year's finalists the Miami Heat 4-0 and a lot of people’s favorites the Brooklyn Nets. The #3 seed this season are chasing their first franchise championship finals since 1974, with the added hunger of two time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo chasing his first ring and looking to take his career forward, becoming one of the all time NBA great players and have a Hall of Fame career.
This will be a very exciting series to watch, with Trae Young and the Hawks defense looking to stop the Bucks powerful offense and limit Giannis’ points scoring. Both teams strengths and weaknesses taken into account, this should finally be Giannis and the Bucks year to reach that elusive NBA championship finals.
Prediction - Milwaukee Bucks to win the series 4-2
Los Angeles Clippers vs Phoenix Suns (Suns lead series 2-1)
With this series well underway and the Suns on fire, taking a 2-1 lead thanks to Devin Bookers first career triple double scoring 40 points, 13 rebounds and 11 assists, setting the tone in game one, backed up by his supporting cast Deandre Ayton, Jae Crowder, Mikal Bridges and Cameron Payne, with the Suns not letting the loss of Chris Paul, due to the NBA’s Health and Safety protocols affect their performance. In game two it was Cameron Payne’s 29 points and Deandre Ayton’s 24 points who helped lead the Suns to a narrow victory, thanks to a game-winning dunk with only 0.7 seconds left on the clock.
The LA Clippers are dealing with their own issues as Kawhi Leonard, their star man with plenty of playoff experience, has missed the first two games with a right knee sprain, not knowing when he might return. Therefore, the question is whether Paul George can turn the
Clippers fortunes around and get them back into this series, but after missing two free-throws late on in game 2 to take the lead. The Suns won their last six playoff games before losing the last game but, this series should be theirs for the taking, especially starting with the 2-0 lead at the start and a very impressive offensive unit.
Prediction - Phoenix Suns to win the series 4-1.