All top 3 teams last year won their first round match ups, the Spurs, the Thunders and the Lakers. The 4th and 5th seeds went 7 games and won by the 5th seeded LA Clippers. The same teams meet in this year’s 4th and 5th seed Conference Playoff match up, only this time the Clippers are seeded higher than the Grizzlies. Will Memphis return the favor against the Clips or will CP3 and the gang impose their dominance over the Grizzlies?
Which team among the bottom seeds this year is capable of an upset? The Houston Rockets and James Harden gets to go back to Oklahoma but their only trip to the city this season ended in a one sided affair, OKC 120, Rockets 98, Harden scored only 17 points.
The 2 Houston games resulted in a split but the Rockets won by a total of 3 points 122-119 while the Thunders beat them by 30 points 124-94 in their own home court. Advantage OKC.
The Lakers vs the Spurs will probably yield a more interesting match up. The LA Lakers’ first half of the season indicated they were not gonna make it in this year’s playoffs. Instead they sneaked past the Jazz and even jumped over the Rockets to snatch the 7th seed in the West. The Lakers beat San Antonio without Kobe Bryant 4 days ago, 91-86. But with the season long inconsistency and without Bryant in the playoff lineup against the season long consistent and efficient Spurs team, I’ll say Advantage Spurs.
The last time the Warriors made it to the playoffs, they upset the number 1 seeded Dallas Mavericks. This team however is completely different from the 2006-2007 Warriors, only Andris Biedrins remains from that team but he is no longer part of the starting lineup. This is Steph Curry’s team, or David Lee’s team, Mark Jackson’s team maybe? Just call them the 2017 San Francisco Warriors. What’s ahead of them is better than the regular season match up. The Warriors gets a break from facing a Denver team with Danilo Gallinari in it who scored at least 20 points in their 4 meetings this season. The problem is, everyone in the Nuggets team is capable of stepping up and produce a Gallinari like numbers. Advantage Denver Nuggets.
Here are the Western Conference Playoff Match Ups
(1) Oklahoma City Thunders (60-22) vs. (8) Houston (45-37)
Regular season series (Thunder lead 2-1)
Nov 28, 2012 Houston 98, Oklahoma City 120
Dec 29, 2012 Oklahoma City 124, Houston 94
Feb 20, 2013 Oklahoma City 119, Houston 122
(2) San Antonio (58-24) Vs. (7) Los Angeles (45-37)
Regular season series (Spurs lead 2-1)
Nov 13, 2012 San Antonio 84, Los Angeles 82
Jan 9, 2013 Los Angeles 105, San Antonio 108
Apr 14, 2013 San Antonio 86, Los Angeles 91
(3) Denver (57-25) Vs. (6) Golden State (47-35)
Regular season series (Nuggets lead 3-1)
Nov 10, 2012 Denver 107, Golden State 101
Nov 23, 2012 Golden State 91, Denver 102
Nov 29, 2012 Denver 105, Golden State 106
Jan 13, 2013 Golden State 105, Denver 116
(4) Los Angeles (56-26) Vs. (5) Memphis (56-26)
Regular season series (Clippers lead 3-1)
Oct 31, 2012 Memphis 92, Los Angeles 101
Jan 14, 2013 Los Angeles 99, Memphis 73
Mar 13, 2013 Memphis 96, Los Angeles 85
Apr 13, 2013 Los Angeles 91, Memphis 87