Updated: May 31
NBA Playoffs: Eastern Conference First Round Predictions
Written by: Andrew Felton
With the Play-In tournament complete and the NBA Eastern bracket set who has the best chance of reaching that conference finals and a shot at winning the greatest prize in Basketball.
Milwaukee Bucks (1) vs Miami Heat (8)
With the Heat losing out in the first play-in tournament game to the Atlanta Hawks, they managed to bounce back beating the Chicago Bulls to reach the playoffs and set up a game against the Milwaukee Bucks. This, should be an easy series for the 2021 champions, led by their star man and previous MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo who has average 31.1 ppg, 11.8 rpg and 5.7 apg this regular season. A clean sweep for the Bucks in this series will allow them to rest up for the next game, as they will look to regain their crown as NBA Champions.
Prediction - Milwaukee Bucks win the series 4-0
Cleveland Cavaliers (4) vs New York Knicks (5)
This could be another fantastic series between two teams, both looking to get their franchises back to the top of the NBA where they belong, with this series likely to go the distance. With the Cavs boasting a better regular season record, this series may edge more towards them with Donovan Mitchell looking to lead the way against Julius Randle, RJ Barrett and Derrick Rose.
Prediction - Cleveland Cavaliers win the series 4-3
Philadelphia 76ers (3) vs Brooklyn Nets (6)
Another series which may see a clean sweep could be the 76ers vs the Nets. With the Nets now a very different looking side with trades seeing Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving leave, they did still manage to reach the playoffs with a record of 45 wins and 37 losses. However, going up against a powerhouse like the 76ers with players like Joel Embiid who is looking like the favourite to win the MVP, especially after winning the NBA scoring title, boasting a stat line of 33.1 ppg, 10.2 rpg and 4.2 apg this regular season and now backed up by James Harden chasing his first ring, this Phili team will be heading into these playoffs meaning business.
Prediction - Philadelphia 76ers win the series 4-1
Boston Celtics (2) vs Atlanta Hawks (7)
The Boston Celtics will be looking to go one better than last year and get their hands on that NBA championship for an 18th time. There is no argument in saying the Celtics have one of the best rosters in this playoff finals with players like Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart and Blake Griffin which should help them breeze past an Atlanta Hawks team who aren't great and will rely on Trae Young trying to outscore the whole of the Celtics team, hoping someone else may chip in with an outstanding game.