As expected, there was no lack of excitement through the first round of the NBA playoffs. Two series’ being decided in a game seven and a #8 seed upsetting the team with the best record throughout the regular season. In addition, a much anticipated Oklahoma City Thunder and Los Angeles Lakers matchup is finally set after the Lakers edged out the Denver Nuggets in a season saving game seven. It’s safe to say that these playoffs won’t disappoint.
No matter what happens in the regular season, everyone has a legitimate chance at winning the title. The overall best record in the NBA belonged to the Chicago Bulls but that meant nothing. After stars Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah went down with injuries, the Bulls struck out. Taking it all the way down to the final seconds of game six, the Bulls were eliminated making them only the fifth #1 seed to lose in the first round.
After Lakers forward, Metta World Peace, was suspended for seven games for elbowing Thunder guard, James Harden in the head, the Lakers-Thunder rematch became highly anticipated. Metta World Peace is back from his suspension and will revisit James Harden and the Thunder. In addition, long time Laker guard Derek Fisher, now with the Thunder, will play against the team that he won all of his championships with. If that wasn’t enough, two of the biggest stars, Kevin Durant of the Thunder and Kobe Bryant of the Lakers collide on their quest for a championship. Surely an action packed series.
After surviving a seven game series against the Memphis Grizzlies, the Los Angeles Clippers will meet up with the best in the west, the San Antonio Spurs. The Clippers were a very hyped team in the beginning of the season and now have a chance to live up to that as they match up with the Spurs.
It’s championship or bust for the Miami Heat. After falling in the NBA finals last year to the Dallas Mavericks, the Heat won’t accept anything short of a title. A heavy favorite to win the east, the Heat are on the prowl as they blew past the New York Knicks in five games. They are now matched up with the Indiana Pacers in the conference semi-finals.
Then there were the Boston Celtics. Despite the old age and injuries, the Celtics found a way to advance past the Atlanta Hawks and reach the conference semi-finals against the underdog Philadelphia 76‘ers. The Celtics continue to find themselves winning in the playoffs and are a hard team to stop.
As the first round of the playoffs ends and the second round begins, the excitement continues to rise. The Miami Heat and Oklahoma City Thunder are the favorites to advance to the finals but at the rate things are going, it is really anyone’s game. We could be witnessing history in the NBA. Could the Thunder win their first championship after moving from Seattle? Could a #8 seed win it all? Is this the year for the Heat? Or will it be just another championship for Kobe and the Lakers? There is a wide variety of possibilities and this year could be a record breaking one.