|Date with Destiny: Celtics Set to Face Lebron, Cavs in Return to Playoffs||2015 NBA Playoffs Expert Picks: First Round||Will the Real Clay Buchholz Please Stand Up?||Connelly’s Top Ten: Patriots Day Weekend!|
Last year, the Nets threatened to break the NBA’s 82-game season-worst 9-73 (.110) record of the 1972-1973 Philadelphia 76ers, and this year, the Clippers are on pace for 7-75. So who’s Blake Griffin again? Stay tuned each week for updates on that, but for now, all teams have finally lost a game, and the Spurs have joined the Hornets (winning percentage) and Lakers (games back) atop the West. In the East, Old Man River(s) has led the Old Men Celtics to the top. If the Red Sox’ injury situation was a precursor, that won’t last long.
Boston, New Orleans, and Golden State have yet to lose a home game, while San Antonio and Dallas haven’t lost on the road. Every team has a home win, but the Clippers and Wizards haven’t won on the road. This early in the season, teams still have chances to go on runs, though things are setting up nicely, so let’s look at what would happen if the playoffs started as of Wednesday, November 17, before the day’s games:
Despite being #8, the Thunder are still pretty good at 6-4; that’s the West for you. Meanwhile, the Hornets lost their first game Monday in Dallas by three. That’s pretty good considering Dallas is 7-2. Kevin Durant can’t do everything, and the Hornets will be all too happy to prove it.
San Antonio is 8-1, riding a seven-game winning streak. Phoenix has won its last three, but they’re no San Antonio. Phoenix isn’t having the start they had last season; San Antonio’s having it instead. Things could still change later, but for now, San Antonio is the better team.
At 7-4, and 5-0 at home, Golden State is much better than almost everybody thought they’d be, but it’s never wise to bet against Phil Jackson, Kobe Bryant, and the Lakers early in the playoffs, especially to a team that’s not used to the environment.
The Jazz have yet to lose against the East, but that won’t do any good until the NBA Finals. They have a knack for comebacks, but that mojo ended Monday versus the Thunder. But with the Mavericks having complied a 7-2 record via some impressive victories, and without a road loss to their names yet, Dallas should do just fine.
Even most of the East’s playoff teams, like the Pacers, are sub-.500, not very good, or both. With all of Boston‘s talent, and the luxury of being able to rest key players during the end of the regular season, Boston will cruise easily like last season.
Without LeBron James on the Cavaliers, the Bulls are the team to beat in the Central Division. So in order to win, Cleveland has to ask themselves, “What should I do? Should I pretend to be fouled? Should I spread rumors about their players? Should I practice extra hard? Should I eat a doughnut which has nothing to do with this commercial? Or should I just disappear?” The Cavs’ll probably just end up disappearing.
Miami seems to love the #5 seed; they’ve been there the past two years, including facing #4 Atlanta in 2009. Atlanta’s doing well as always, while Miami has stumbled, and LeBron has already thrown his coach under the bus. This’ll probably end like last season for LeBron, when he got bored and stopped trying.
Tags: Atlanta Hawks, Boston Celtics, Chicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dallas Mavericks, Golden State Warriors, Indiana Pacers, Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, Milwaukee Bucks, NBA Playoffs, New Orleans Hornets, Oklahoma City Thunder, Orlando Magic, Phoenix Suns, San Antonio Spurs, Utah Jazz