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Saturday, 30 April 2011

NBA Play Off Semi Finals

So the 1st Round is over and while there were not so many surprise results in the overall series winners, there were a number of exceptional games and it was one of the best 1st Rounds the NBA has had in some time.

The biggest surprise of all was one of the biggest surprises in the NBA history as the Memphis Grizzlies defeated San Antonio in 6 games (should have finished it in 5 in all honesty). While it was a surprise in the fact a Number 8 beat the Number 1 seed in the West, it was a match up the Grizzlies liked, tanking games to ensure they played the Spurs rather than the Lakers.

The Lakers and Bulls were surprisingly pushed to the absolute limits by the Hornets and Pacers respectively, but both came through and are now the top 2 seeds in their respective Conferences.

Boston came through easily against the Knicks after 2 scares at home, Miami did what they had to do and now we have one of the most eagerly anticipated series to come.

Congratulations also to Oklahoma City (my dark horse), Atlanta and Dallas who make up the last 8 teams left.


Eastern Conference Semi Finals
Chicago Bulls v Atlanta Hawks: The Bulls dominated the last two games in the regular season between the teams and are matching up to the Hawks in a much better fashion than the Pacers. Carlos Boozer should be more of a factor while the defence is capable of shutting down the Atlanta team. The Hawks would really have to play to the limit to win this series, but I can't see that happening.

I expect the Hawks will get a win, maybe two, but

Chicago Bulls to win in 5 and progress to the Finals


Miami Heat v Boston Celtics: The biggest win Miami may have had in the regular season could be the win over Boston in the final weeks of the season for two reasons; one, they proved they can beat the Celtics after losing the 3 other regular season games... two, they get home court advantage over this series.

Wow, this series is going to be good. The loss of Kendrick Perkins made the Celtics a little easier to play for Miami, but the Celtics still hold the edge in the starting line up... Just.

The Heat role players have to have an impact in the series and cannot rely on the 'Big Three' to do it all themselves. Erik Spoelstra also has to get Dwyane Wade involved and making an impact in these games, while the players must concentrate at all times and not allow themselves to fall behind by sleeping through any of the 48 minutes.

Doc Rivers will look to Rajon Rondo to show his superiority over Mike Bibby or Mario Chalmers at the PG position, while he has to be happy with his own 'Big Three' after their road performances against the Knicks.

Tough series to predict but I think the

Miami Heat come through a tough tough series in 7 Games.


Western Conference Semi Finals
LA Lakers v Dallas Mavericks: Both of these veteran teams must feel they can win this series, but it is the Lakers who dominated the Mavs in the late regular season and I think they have enough talent to come through here.

The Lakers played a lot better in the last two games of their series with the New Orleans Hornets and also could hold the edge with home court advantage, especially considering Dallas' 3-18 road record in the Play Offs.

Dallas will make the Lakers play hard, but I just feel the

Lakers come through in 6 Games


Oklahoma City Thunder v Memphis Grizzlies: Everyone in Oklahoma City must have been thinking they will have to beat the San Antonio Spurs to make the Finals in the West, but they cannot afford to take the Grizzlies lightly after losing 3-1 in the regular season.

Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph will both make things tough, but the x-factor could be Kendrick Perkins who was not in the line up for any of the regular season games for the Thunder.

As long as Russell Westbrook remembers Kevin Durant is on his side, the Thunder should come through, but expect a tough series from the Grizzlies.

I expect the Oklahoma City Thunder in 6 tough games.


It has been a great Play Offs so far, and I am expecting a lot more... even if it is only from the Heat-Celtics games. The Chicago-Atlanta series looks the one with the least drama, but the other 3 should produce some really good games and I am definitely looking forward to it.

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