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Old 03-30-2002, 04:35 AM   #1
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Default Discuss the Playoff Picture

So the playoffs are just around the corner. Let's talk about them. Here's the N.B.A. Standings tonight. Here are the matchups (keeping in mind they could change day by day):

Eastern Conference:

(1) New Jersey vs. (8) Indiana
(4) Orlando vs. (5) Philadephia
(2) Detroit vs. (7) Charlotte
(3) Boston vs. (6) Milwaukee

Western Conference:

(1) Sacramento vs. (8) Utah
(4) San Antonio vs. (5) Minnesota
(2) Dallas vs. (7) Seattle
(3) L.A. Lakers vs. (6) Portland

So anybody have any thoughts on those series? I think anybody in the East (1 through 8) could make it to the N.B.A. Finals.

Who's your guys' sleeper pick? I'll tell you mine. This is a team that nobody talks about out West but I think could be dangerous. The Seattle Supersonics. I think this team could take out the Sacramento Kings in the first round and I think this team could take out the Dallas Mavericks in the first round. Seattle's won at Dallas and they've won at Sacramento this year so they know they can win in those places. Plus they play the Lakers well. The Sonics have won 4 out of their last 7 against the Lakers. Interestingly enough, the Lakers 2 wins this year over Seattle have been without Shaq. When Shaq was in there that one game, Seattle won. It's almost like they want Shaq to be in there because it gives them a better chance to win.

I also think whoever gets to meet Utah/The Clippers in the first round will pretty much get a "bye". It's the only sure thing as far as whoever gets them is going to Round 2 with ease.

All the other series, except for the Lakers, could go either way. But it was also said to me once, by a Laker fan that the best chance to take the Lakers out is in a short 5-game series rather than a 7-game one.

I'd like to see the Clippers take the #8 spot just to see new blood in the playoffs but I don't think that's going to happen now with Utah up 3 1/2 games over them for the 8th spot.

In the East, Miami is 3 games back of the final spot. They're barely alive. You know though if I'm New Jersey, that's the one team I don't want to face in the first round because they're playoff, battle tested and if overlooked they could win a first round series this year because this year they're not the favorite in the 1st round. All the pressure is of off them.
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