2021 NBA Playoffs Preview

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Eastern Conference

1. Philadelphia 76ers vs. 8. Washington Wizards

Players to Watch: C Joel Embiid and G Russell Westbrook

Who Wins: 76ers in 5 games

4. New York Knicks vs. 5. Atlanta Hawks

Players to Watch: F Julius Randle and G Trae Young

Who Wins: Knicks in 6 games

3. Milwaukee Bucks vs. 6. Miami Heat

Players to Watch: F Giannis Antetokounmpo and F Jimmy Butler

Who Wins: Bucks in 7 games

2. Brooklyn Nets vs. 7. Boston Celtics

Players to Watch: G Kyrie Irving and F Jayson Tatum

Who Wins: Nets in 5 games

Western Conference

1. Utah Jazz vs. 8. Memphis Grizzlies

Players to Watch: C Rudy Gobert and G Ja Morant

Who Wins: Jazz in 6 games

4. Los Angeles Clippers vs. 5. Dallas Mavericks

Players to Watch: F Paul George and G Luka Doncic

Who Wins: Clippers in 7 games

3. Denver Nuggets vs. 6. Portland Trail Blazers

Players to Watch: C Nikola Jokic and G Damian Lillard

Who Wins: Nuggets in 6 games

2. Phoenix Suns vs. 7. Los Angeles Lakers

Players to Watch: G Devin Booker and F Anthony Davis

Who Wins: Lakers in 7 games

NBA Finals and Award Projections

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* – indicates playoffs

MVP – G Luka Doncic – Dallas Mavericks

Rookie – G Anthony Edwards – Minnesota Timberwolves

Coach – Lloyd Pierce – Atlanta Hawks

Defensive Player – C Bam Adebayo – Miami Heat

Most Improved – G Markelle Fultz – Orlando Magic

Sixth Man – F Montrez Harrell – Los Angeles Lakers

Executive – Travis Schlenk – Atlanta Hawks

Playoffs Continue reading

Atlantic Division

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1. Boston Celtics

It’s Jayson Tatum’s show now. He could be primed for a MVP caliber season in Boston.

2. Brooklyn Nets

We’ll get to see Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving play together with former two-time MVP Steve Nash as the head coach.

3. Toronto Raptors

They don’t have the flashiest roster, but they get the job done with a great coach in Nick Nurse.

4. Philadelphia 76ers

The direction of this teams is in flux with Doc Rivers aboard as the new head coach.

5. New York Knicks

It’ll be another work in progress at Madison Square Garden with Tom Thibodeau as the new head coach. Continue reading

NBA Finals and Award Projections

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* – indicates playoffs

MVP – Damian Lillard – Trail Blazers

Rookie – Ja Morant – Grizzlies

Coach – Doc Rivers – Clippers

Defensive Player – Giannis Antetokounmpo – Bucks

Most Improved – Kristaps Porzingis – Mavericks

Sixth Man – Lou Williams – Clippers

Executive – Lawrence Frank – Clippers

Playoffs Continue reading

Atlantic Division

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1. Philadelphia 76ers

A lot of money has been invested in their starting lineup to deliver a trip to the Conference Finals or better.

2. Toronto Raptors

They are the defending champs and they will defend that title without Kawhi, but the world will realize how good Pascal Siakam is.

3. Boston Celtics

Last year was a disappointment and they hope Kemba Walker is better than Kyrie was.

4. Brooklyn Nets

Even without Kevin Durant for his first season aboard this Nets team has a lot of intriguing pieces to build on.

5. New York Knicks

Sure signing four power forwards was a strange move, but they weren’t massive long-term deals. Continue reading