NBA Playoffs - Round 2
Written by: Andrew Felton
Time to win or else you are going home / images.performgroup.com
With Round one of the NBA play-offs completed, we move onto the conference semi-finals, where teams will be looking to make a statement and advance to the conference final, for a shot at being conference champions.
Philadelphia 76ers vs Atlanta Hawks (series tied 1-1)
It might shock many NBA fans to see the Hawks in the conference semi-finals, as there are many doubts around whether Trae Young could carry a team to the NBA finals. Not only is Trae leading the way, but he has helped the series to be tied 1-1, after dropping 35 points and 10 assists in the first game. However, the real issue the Hawks will have is to stop 76ers star Joel Embiid, who has scored 79 points over the first two games and is a player who easily dominates in the paint, often putting up high numbers from the charity stripe. With this said, the 76ers should have the Hawks number and advance within six games to the finals.
Prediction - Philadelphia 76ers to win the series 4-2
Milwaukee Bucks vs Brooklyn Nets (Nets lead the series 2-0)
After the Bucks were able to sweep last year's finalists the Miami Heat in round one, they seem to have met their match with this year's favorites to win it all, the Brooklyn Nets. The Nets have not disappointed so far this playoff series, beating the Bucks 115-107 in game one and annihilating them 125-86 in game two, both without James Harden, as he went off within the first minute, thanks to a hamstring injury and is set to miss game three. With Kyrie, KD and Blake Griffin still starting for the Nets, this series will be another breeze, as they look to advance to the conference finals, with only injuries looking to hinder them.
Prediction - Brooklyn Nets to win the series 4-1
Utah Jazz vs Los Angeles Clippers (Utah Jazz lead the series 1-0)
This could be set for another long series for the LA Clippers, as they face the NBA’s best team this season, who are coming off a 4-1 win over the Memphis Grizzlies, whereas the Clippers went seven games against a tough Dallas Mavericks. The headlines will be shared by the Jazz star Donovan Mitchell, who made his mark on this series by putting up 45 points in a first game win and Kawhi Leonard who we all know can turn it on at any point and single handedly win the game. So grab the popcorn, sit back and enjoy this one.
Prediction - Utah Jazz to win the series 4-2
Denver Nuggets vs Phoenix Suns (Suns lead the series 2-0)
After knocking out the current NBA champions in round one, the Phoenix Suns deserve and must be respected going forward in these finals. Currently leading 2-0 against a Nuggets side, who have recently crowned league MVP Nikola Jokic, they are showing no mercy with a 122-105 win in game one with veteran Chris Paul scoring 21 points and 11 assist, then adding 17 points with 15 assists and 0 turnovers in game 2 winning 123-98, this series looks like it is only heading one, as the Suns look to be in a comfortable position to move on to the conference finals.
Predictions - Phoenix Suns to win the series 4-1