Saturday, April 18, 2015

2015 NBA Playoffs Predictions - Who Will Win The NBA Championship?

Does LeBron James have what it takes to lead the Cleveland Cavs to their first championship ever?

Here we go! It's NBA Playoffs time! One of my FAVORITE times of the year!

16 teams battle it out, but only one of them can come out on top! At the beginning of the season I made my predictions as to who I thought was going to make the playoffs. My picks were pretty close to accurate. 5 out of the 8 teams I predicted in the Eastern Conference made the playoffs. The 3 surprises for me were the Atlanta Hawks, the Milwaukee Bucks and the Boston Celtics, who replaced the Miami Heat, the New York Knicks and the Charlotte Hornets.

In the West, 7 out of the 8 teams I predicted in the Western Conference made the playoffs. The only surprise for me was the New Orleans Pelicans who replaced the Oklahoma City Thunder, who were missing their superstar player Kevin Durant for most of the season.

So now that we know who is in the playoffs it's time to find out who will be the NBA Champion!

Let's start with the Eastern Conference:

1. Atlanta Hawks over 8 Brooklyn Nets
2. Cleveland Cavaliers over 7. Boston Celtics
3. Chicago Bulls over 6. Milwaukee Bucks
5. Washington Wizards over 4. Toronto Raptors

I absolutely was NOT expecting the Hawks to be THIS good this season. The Nets I had them barely making the playoffs at the beginning of the year and they proved me right. I also had them making a very early exit in the playoffs and I believe they will prove me right. The Celtics stand no chance at beating the Cavs. I'm predicting a sweep here. I think the Bucks can steal a game from the Bulls, but that's about it. I'm predicting the upset with the Wizards over the Raptors and the main reason is Paul Pierce. They have been saving him for such a time as this and I believe that Pierce is going to turn back the clock and play big time to get his team over the top. I think this series is going 6 or 7 games though.

5. Washington Wizards over 1. Atlanta Hawks
3. Chicago Bulls over 2. Cleveland Cavaliers

I'm going with the two upsets in the second round. The Hawks are a great team and they have been getting it done all year. However, they are not playoff tested and I believe this will be their undoing. I still think the Wizards are a lot better than their record will indicate and as such I'm predicting that they will pull out the upset and defeat the Hawks in 6 games. I'm also picking the Chicago Bulls over the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Bulls have Derrick Rose back and are a strong defensive team, which helps big time when it comes to playoff basketball. The Bulls are getting healthy at the right time and I said at the beginning of the season that if they are healthy, they are the best team in the East, so I'm going to stick with that.

3. Chicago Bulls over 5. Washington Wizards

I think the Wizards will keep things interesting. However, I think the Bulls have way more talent and depth and I think they are going to be too much to handle. Book the Chicago Bulls for their first return to the NBA Finals since Michael Jordan left.

Now let's take a look at the Western Conference:

1. Golden State Warriors over 8. New Orleans Pelicans
7. Dallas Mavericks over 2. Houston Rockets
6. San Antonio Spurs over 3. Los Angeles Clippers
5. Memphis Grizzlies over 4. Portland Trailblazers

The Warriors finished with the best record in the league for a reason. I don't think the Pelicans really stand a chance at beating this team at all. Even though they are the 7th seed, I really like the Mavs chances against the Rockets. I believe the Mavs can outrebound the Rockets and when the Mavs actually rebound, they are a very tough team to beat. I've counted out the defending champions for far too many times and have been burned. Combine that with the fact that I think the Clippers are overrated I think the Spurs will get the win. The Trailblazers haven't beaten the Grizzlies yet this season and I don't see them beating them in a 7 game series.

1. Golden State Warriors over 5. Memphis Grizzlies
6. San Antonio Spurs over 7. Dallas Mavericks

The Warriors are one of the most talented and deepest teams in the NBA. I don't think the Grizzlies have enough firepower to defeat them. Both the Spurs and the Mavericks are playoff tested and experienced. However, I think the Spurs have the edge and will pull out the victory.

6. San Antonio Spurs over 1. Golden State Warriors

I believe this is going to be a 7 game battle and an epic series. However, in the end, I think the defending champions will pull off the victory.

As for the NBA Finals I am sticking with my prediction from the beginning of the season.

6. San Antonio Spurs defeat 3. Chicago Bulls 4 games to 2. The Spurs to me still look like they are the best team in the NBA when it comes to winning 7 game series. Even though the Bulls have dramatically improved, I don't think they have enough to defeat the Spurs yet.

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