We’re halfway through the first round of the NBA Playoffs and some things aren’t exactly what we thought they would be while some were exactly what we thought they’d be.
That being said, here are three thoughts as we go into the backend of the first round:
THOUGHT #1: Can anyone beat the Cavs?
Right now, it’s looking like no one can. Lebron James and his cohorts have been able to find ways to win, even though it hasn’t been pretty. Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love have their moments but the Cavs are fueled by the will of King James and right now, no one can match him.
Extra thought: Kyle Korver was supposed to be the piece that would make the Cavs near invincible. So far, he’s been outplayed by the likes of Richard Jefferson and Iman Shumpert.
THOUGHT #2: Can anyone beat the Warriors?
See thought above. However, what makes the Warriors scarier is that they haven’t fully deployed Kevin Durant yet. So they’ve got an extra MVP-level gear that is currently resting and getting healthier everyday, while their potential competitors are still beating each other up. That being said, the Warriors benefit a hell of a lot if the OKC-Houston and San Antonio-Memphis match ups get extended, given that the Spurs and Grizzlies rely a lot on veterans who are getting worn down with each game and the Thunder and Rockets rely on one transcendent star who is wearing down with every game.
THOUGHT #3: Who’s the standout star of the first round?
We could go with Lebron James (see Thought 1). Or the usual suspects like the Warriors’ Steph Curry, Draymond Green, and Kevin Durant, the Spurs’ Kawhi Leonard, the Celtics’ Isaiah Thomas, the Clippers’ Chris Paul and Blake Griffin. Or some often-overlooked but deserving stars, like the Grizzlies’ Mike Conley and Marc Gasol, the Hawks’ Paul Millsap, the Pacers’ Paul George, or even the Raptors’ DeMar Derozan. But instead, we’re going with the Greek Freak, Giannis Antetokuonmpo, who is currently averaging 21.3 ppg, 10 rpg, 4.5 apg and 3 highlight reels per game. Considering this is a very young Bucks team missing a very crucial piece (Jabari Parker), Antetokuonmpo has put the team on his back and made them dangerous enough to snare some Raptor scalp.
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