Eastern Conference Conference Playoff Predictions: Round 1
After a long wait, it's finally time for playoff basketball! Check out our predictions for the 1st round matchups in the Western Conference below....
Milwaukee Bucks - Orlando Magic
The Bucks have been one of the most dominant teams on both sides of the basketball all season. Reigning MVP, Giannis Antetokounmpo, could probably sit out this entire series and the the Buck could still handle the series. Unfortunately for the Magic, Giannis is playing. The Bucks have struggled more against 3 point shooting teams this year and the Magic just aren’t really that type of team. Milwaukee’s defense will cause all kinds of problems for the Magic. This will be a clean sweep for the Bucks.
Milwaukee Wins: 4-0
Toronto Raptors - Brooklyn Nets
One thing I will miss from last year’s playoffs is Drake sitting curtsied at all the Raptors games. Toronto has looked like the best team in the bubble so far. Brooklyn entered the restart with a completely decimated roster due to a combination of injury and COVID related issues. Despite missing many pieces, the Nets have pulled together a scrappy team that has performed better than most expected. I still don’t think they stand a chance against this Raptors team. There’s a possibility that Caris LeVert can carry Brooklyn to at least one win, but otherwise it’s another sweep in the East.
Toronto Wins: 4-0
Boston Celtics - Philadelphia Sixers
With the news of Ben Simmons missing the rest of the year, the outlook in Philly is bleak. The Boston Celtics have struggled against competent big men this year, and the Sixers have someone beyond competent in their center, Joel Embiid. Embiid should post very impressive numbers, but I don’t see the Sixers being able to offer enough support around him. Without Simmons, the Celtics just have more talent across the floor. Boston was one of three teams in the NBA to be in the top 5 in both offensive and defensive rating. Philly can win a couple games off the shoulders of Joel Embiid, but the rest goes to Boston.
Boston Wins: 4-2
Miami Heat - Indiana Pacers
One of the names floated around for bubble MVP was TJ Warren of the Indiana Pacers. He has put up some memorable numbers during the restart, but tends to struggle against is arch enemy, Jimmy Butler. Outside of the Butler-Warren feud, the Pacers just aren’t a very strong offensive team. This Heat team offers a much better set of scorers and can defend at an elite level. These games will be entertaining, but Miami should have no trouble coming out on top against the Pacers.
Miami Wins: 4-1
Be sure to checkout our predictions in the Western Conference as well!