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TSN Basketball Analyst


Hello! Here we go!  The NBA playoffs have arrived and the next 10 weeks should be a lot of fun if you’re a hoops fan. Here are my amateur predictions for the first round.     



#1 Milwaukee over #8 Detroit in four games

The Pistons are limping to the finish line with Blake Griffin banged up. The Bucks are a complete team that Detroit can’t keep up with.

#2 Toronto over #7 Orlando in five games

The Raptors must play terrific defence to get the pace of play increased dramatically or they’ll labour against Orlando’s half-court defence. The Magic, who went 22-9 in last 31 games of the regular season, have to play these games at a slower pace. They’re a well-coached and disciplined team that guards, rebounds and protects the ball, so they won’t be an easy out. If Raptors want to have a long playoff run, they can’t mess around and allow their opponent to dictate terms. Jump them on defence, get in transition and show relentless energy.      

#3 Philadelphia over #6 Brooklyn in six games

The Sixers have too much firepower to lose this series, but they’ll be tested by the pesky Nets. Joel Embiid’s health is critical to Philadelphia’s success. D’Angelo Russell must have a great all-around series to give Brooklyn a shot. Simply put, Philly is too good to lose this series.

#4 Boston over #5 Indiana in five games

The Pacers aren’t close to being the same team without Victor Oladipo, but Boston’s defence and toughness will take a hit with Marcus Smart banged up. The Celtics tease people with their talent. They’ll lock in and not mess around here. They know the dominant Bucks will be waiting to seek revenge for last season’s playoff defeat.



#1 Golden State over #8 L.A. Clippers in five games

Doc Rivers’ feisty and deep bunch will find a way to steal a game, but the reality is the Warriors value rest and the next three rounds will offer greater challenges for them. Steph, KD, Klay and Draymond know the deal.

#2 Denver over #7 San Antonio in seven games

This series will be competitive. The Spurs adapt to issues quicker than most and won’t allow Denver to get into a good flow. The Nuggets’ inexperience will show at times. They don’t always play with consistency. Which post guy dominates the series, Nikola Jokic or LaMarcus Aldridge? The better post guy leads the way. I’ll take Jokic.

#6 OKC over #3 Portland in seven games

The Jusuf Nurkic injury is a devastating blow to Blazers. Steven Adams is a beast for Thunder and I just don’t think Portland has a way to deal with Paul George and Russell Westbrook. Both fan bases are awesome, so the in-arena intensity will be superb. I’m betting the Thunder finally break through.

#4 Houston over #5 Utah in seven games

This won’t be an easy series for either team. The Jazz guard you and Rudy Gobert won’t allow James Harden easy layups at the rim. Sometimes you just have to roll with the best player in the series and the more experienced team in big games. I give the Rockets a slight edge here in a terrific series.