The NBA Playoffs start today and there are some fantastic series on tap today. The overall favorite Warriors, fresh off the heels of a historic regular season with 67 wins, a ten-plus point average point differential and finishing as one of the most efficient two-way teams in NBA history, puts it all on the line starting today. Can a “jump shooting” team really win an NBA title? After thirty plus years of incremental playoff growth from NBA champions, can this young, fun-loving bunch leapfrog all the usual trials and tribulations and just win the whole thing?
They’ll have to survive a gauntlet in order to do so, and it starts today with Anthony Davis and the Pelicans. Meanwhile, the playoffs start at noon with one of the most evenly matched series, Washington and Toronto. Both looked like legitimate Finals contenders halfway through the season but have backslid into the four/five matchup. Both have talent – can either put it back together?
And of course, the West. Wow, the West. Houston and Dallas matchup for a fierce interstate series and it isn’t even CLOSE to the best series in the opening round. That’s how crazy the West is this year.
Let’s see if we can start off the postseason in grand fashion and notch an opening day winner.
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Today’s Free Pick:
New Orleans Pelicans at Golden State Warriors -9 (Total: 204)
It feels weird to say that a team with the best young player in the NBA, a player whose PER this season ranks among the all-time best seasons in the NBA, has NO shot to win the series. But, basically, the Warriors are going to likely rip through the Pelicans. But that doesn’t mean you won’t get to enjoy The Brow’s playoff debut and be treated to some entertaining basketball.
Can the Pels win a few games? Sure, this is a really good team. But is it going to happen in Golden State? Probably not. I lean heavily Warriors today, despite two of the four games this series being pretty competitive, including one Pels win and one 128-122 overtime thriller that went the way of the Warriors. But I’m not sure I’m willing to lay nine points today.
I am perfectly happy to get on today’s OVER 204. Both these teams can score some points, I expet Golden State to push tempo in an eager display that the postseason can’t and won’t change who they are and how they play. Therefore, expect a lot of points to get scored. These teams were only 2-2 on the over/under in the regular season but the two games OVER eclipsed the mark with ease, while the UNDER games were still over 200 combined points. I expect the same today and wouldn’t be surprised to see this one creep into the 210-215 mark.
Say hello to Steph and Klay, America – you’re going to be seeing a lot of them this Summer and today is a nice national-stage introduction.