2018 NBA Playoffs – Part 1 of the First Round

The NBA season has been ridiculous filled with player beef, basketball twitter arguments over who is the Rookie of the Year (I’m with both of them having it because at the end of the day, it is kinda meaningless considering Michael Carter-Williams won it) and Kevin Durant calling most writers “Blog Boyz” because some of them probably can’t even make a layup with their opposite hands, which led to some dudes crying because they took what Durant said personal, which means he was probably right. What a time to be alive (Am I a blog boy? I can shoot with both hands, run an actual offense, shoot a high percentage from three, and dunk a basketball…. somebody get me connected with Kevin Durant). 

The NBA Playoffs aka the NBA’s second SZN begins on Saturday afternoon. I love the playoffs. I grew up a basketball junkie, where the only thing we would do in my household would watch basketball from late October – Mid June every year (Mom, I know you’re reading this. I love you. Please send my golf clubs next week). The playoffs provide a different type of feel. Everything is high from the pressure, the emotions and the intensity.  You see the game’s best players rise up to their best and some falter within it. That’s what makes the playoffs so great.

I have a scale that’s ranked from 1 through 5 in terms of watchability –  1 = I’m not watching this, and 5 = I’ll watch this regardless of where I’m at. Let’s begin with the Eastern Conference. Part two will be the Western Conference. 

1 – Toronto Raptors vs 8 – Washington Wizards

Watchability – 2 

I love the fake 6 (The real 6 is Seattle). Demar Derozen is baby Kobe, and a legit MVP candidate. I like their bench. I’m happy for them that they had one hell of a regular season. But I’m not breaking out of the edge of my sit to watch them play the most annoying team in the NBA, the Washington Wizards. The Wizards are a team that kept saying how they “wanted” to see the Celtics in the playoffs after beating Boston the previous night, but inexplicably lose to a tanking Orlando squad in the last game of the season. 

The Washington Wizards annoy me for that very reason – every time this team talks, from John Wall to Bradley Beal, to even Kelly Oubre Jr., they always seem to lose the following game. For example, against the Lakers in October, John Wall said he wanted to teach Lonzo Ball a lesson (by shooting 7-22), they lost in overtime after blowing a big lead. Beal and Wall said that the Cavs avoided them in the playoffs last year (They lost to Boston in game 7, a game they were up by like 10 in the 3rd quarter), and Lebron promptly dropped 57 on them while wearing the “Equality” Lebron’s. 

And obviously last night, the Wizards losing to Orlando. I can’t get over that (yes, I know I said this above, my god LOL). I’m laughing as I’m writing this because it’s like, these dudes will never get it. Don’t they understand that sometimes, the best way to say something is to say nothing at all? Maybe it’s because I live in the DMV at the moment (until I eventually make that move back west) that I’m tired of these dudes and their continuous talking out of their ass.  

Toronto, sweep them. Kyle Lowry, please show up in the postseason. Aubrey Graham, please somehow motivate your hometown for a sweep. I’m begging you. Let’s all root against the Washington Wizards before they say something stupid and come up failing once again.

Prediction – I want the Wizards eliminated in 4, if not 3. I’m tired of them. It’ll probably be Toronto in 7 games because I mean, can we really rely on Toronto for doing the obvious?

4 – Cleveland Cavaliers vs 5 – Indiana Pacers

Watchability – 4.75 

That watchability ranking is not because of Lebron James. Playoff Lebron is unreal, and I’m all for watching one of the greatest lace them up, but not in this round. That ranking isn’t because of Victor Oladipo (Where is Jared Ruefa to scream in my ear “OLADIPOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO”), who should win NBA’s most improved player, given how he got traded from the Internet’s favorite players’ team (more on that guy in part two) and actually got better as a player. The crazy thing about the Pacers is that they improved their seeding from last year since they traded Paul George. HMMM. I don’t know man, I don’t know. 

This is about watching the play of one man and one man only – Canada’s own black man, Tristan Thompson. I’m here to see how bad the boos get for Tristan for his amazing (I don’t mean that in a good way) ways he finds himself cheating on women when they’re in their third trimester of having HIS child. American black men don’t cheat. That’s all I’m leaving it at. Thompson alone has had an awful season – he was signed to a large deal because of his ability to rebound and play defense. He hasn’t done that in two years, which is why the Cavs front office got Larry Nance Jr. to be a better version of him. So put it like this – ol boy has a scandal because he doesn’t know the proper ways to cheat, and he’s useless when he plays. BOYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY. 

Prediction – Everybody knows Cleveland is gonna win this series, and in fact, the Cavs should win this series in 5 games.  But having the E! cameras following Thompson is better than this first round match-up. Good luck, Tristan. Also congrats, since you had baby girl today. 

3 – Philadelphia 76ers v 6 – Miami Heat

Watchability – 5

I thought Philly would be good this year, but not the 3 seed and not winners of 52 games. The sixers ended the season on a 16 game winning street. In that winning streak, Ben Simmons has averaged a triple double. The Sixers are so good that JJ Redick thinks he’s 2005 JJ Redick all over again which has me thrown, and the #1 pick in last year’s draft (No, it wasn’t Lonzo but the way EVERYBODY talked about Zo, you’d think it was him), is actually contributing.  Plus, how can we forget the process aka Joel Embiid aka young savage. He was an All-Star this year and is still shooting his shot at Rihanna on Twitter. Young king. 

I have to admit, I haven’t seen much of Miami this season, but Erik Spoelstra has gotten the most out of this interesting group, considering that Wayne Ellington (my boy, btw) has been a valuable contributor. Obviously, the addition of bringing back Dwyane Wade in a midseason trade when Cleveland was cleaning house proved to be solid. Spo should be considered one of the game’s best coaches and not just someone who rode off the coattails with those terrible cliches when Lebron/Bosh & a less washed up version of Wade were winning championships.

Goran Dragic (I have two memories of Dragic in the playoffs, this moment against the Spurs  and this one against my Lakers which makes me remember that the Phoenix Suns were actually good in the NBA) was an all-star. Hassan Whiteside hates Joel Embiid, so maybe he’ll be motivated to actually play basketball in this series instead of complaining about not playing because he’s inconsistent. 

This is a series that I’ll make sure to watch because I want to see the young sixers and how they handle playoff basketball. Obviously, Redick has had his run in the postseason when he was with Orlando, Milwaukee, and the Clippers. Miami is a veteran laden team with guys who’ve had playoff experience before. I’d suggest this is a series that you tune in and catch most of these games because I can see an Embiid/Whiteside confrontation happening in game 4 (assuming Embiid comes back as he should). 

Prediction – Philly in 7 games.  I’m here for Embiid and Simmons giving a shoutout to Meek Mill after game 7 after they admit that they went and spoke to him after the tough loss in game 6 because we’re treating Meek Mill like he’s Nelson Mandela (Dreams and Nightmares is one of the greatest songs of the generation so I’m good with this, #FREEMEEK). 

2 – Boston Celtics vs 7 – Milwaukee Bucks

Watchability – 1

I hate the Celtics. I hate everything about that franchise. The Celtics and their whole thing annoys me. But I’m a Laker fan, so I have this right to be petty. The thing that makes me mad about the Celtics is how likable most of their team is. I HATE THIS. Jayson Tatum (a former Carolina killer) is legit. I wanted Jaylen Brown to be a Laker, but I’m good with Brandon Ingram. Kyrie Irving is my guy. They even got Shane Larkin. I even like Brad Stevens, although he coached in one of the worst title games of all-time in college basketball history (2011). Enough nice things about them. I hope they lose.

Wait.. they’re playing.., the Bucks? Lol, they’ll somehow win this series although they’re short handed (We couldn’t give the Bucks spot to the Denver Nuggets?). 

If it weren’t for the Washington Wizards, the Milwaukee Bucks would be my most annoying team in the NBA. I really like Giannis Antetokounmpo (I totally copied and pasted that). The Greek Freak is a First Team All-NBA performer by far (sorry, Kevin Durant), and he should get all the praise. But have you watched this team play basketball? Have you seen how boring they are? The bucks don’t even run actual offense or even know how to play defense correctly. You’d think a team with all of that length would actually understand how to use it.

I’m not watching this series. I’m not gonna burn my eyes out trying to figure out why both of these teams even are playing each other. Oh I know why – The most annoying team in the NBA lost to a tanking team in Orlando. Makes sense.

Prediction – I don’t care, I hope both teams lose (Boston in 6 games).  

Part two – The Western Conference is coming tomorrow sometime.

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