Emotion is at its highest and the stakes are higher. Dreams can be fulfilled or lost in one game, one quarter or even one basket. This is the NBA playoffs.
There are only four teams remaining, all with the same goal to be crowned the NBA champions.
In the first round, the Magic easily handled the Bobcats, even with the Magic’s big man, Dwight Howard getting into foul trouble early in games. They swept the Bobcats and advanced to the second round.
The high-powered Cavaliers moved the Bulls aside in their first series, winning the series four to one.
The big three players of the Boston Celtics, with Rajon Rondo looking good, led the Celtics past Wade and the Miami Heat.
Milwaukee’s Bucks somehow took the Hawks to seven games but the Hawks still survived with strong play from Joe Johnson and Jamal Crawford.
In probably the best playoff series, the Thunder came back from a 2 -0 hole and tied up the series but went on to lose the next two games. The Thunder are young and full of talent built around Kevin Durant.
With an upset, the Spurs won the battle over Texas. The Spurs were led by Manu Ginobili, and Tim Duncan. The Mavericks’ Caron Butler and Brendan Hayward didn’t show up in the series letting the load rest on Dirk Nowitzki.
Phoenix knocked out a fighting Trailblazers team without Roy for most of the series. Grant Hill, Amare Stoudemire and Jason Richardson all stepped up to beat the Blazers.
The Jazz took down the Nuggets in six games where Carmelo Anthony scored a lot but somehow looked like a none-factor.
The Jazz got swept by a Bryant-led Lakers team. Pau Gasol showed up in the second game and played well.
The Celtics vs Cavilers game was overshadowed by Lebron’s elbow but in game three, James came out and scored 38 points leading his team to an easy victory. Making many ask whats wrong with Lebron’s elbow. Rajon Rondo far outplayed James in the playoff series. Rondo recorded his fourth playoff triple double in game four. He even earned MVP chants from the fans inside the TD Garden arena in Boston.
The Magic led by Dwight Howard, who hasn’t been in foul trouble this series, eliminated the Hawks easily with a sweep. The Hawks couldn’t find an answer for the Magic with five players in double figures in game four.
The Suns have already wrapped up their series against the Spurs. The Suns were led by Amare Stoudemire and Steve Nash. They might have some rust heading into the conference finals.
Orlando finished it’s series last night along with the Lakers sweeping the Jazz. The Lakers will head into a series against the Suns starting Monday.
The Magic beat out the Hawks easily, they will face the Celtics.
The Celtics versus the Cavaliers series broke its tie at two on Tuesday at Cleveland. The Celtics won game five easily behind Ray Allen’s 25 points. Lebron James only scored 15 points in his probable last game as a Cav in Cleveland. Lebron, with a triple- double, couldn’t stop the Celtics but he also had nine turnovers.
The Celtics are now going to face the hot Magic who have not lost a game during the playoffs. Sorry to Cleveland fans but this maybe the last time you see Lebron in the red and blue. But that’s a whole story by itself and the news will be surrounding him this off season.
The Celtics, led by Ray Allen, gave the Magic their first loss of the playoffs. Dwight Howard only scored 13 points and 12 boards. Game two will be on Tuesday. The Celtics win another against the Magic. The game was close with a 95 – 92 win for the Celtics.
The Lakers won big against the Suns on Monday night with a lot of help from Kobe Bryant, who scored 40 points. Both teams come in hot off a sweep. Game two was another win for the Lakers behind Pau Gasol’s 29 points and Bryant’s 21 points. The game was close until the fourth quarter when the Lakers took control.
Who will take the championship trophy home? Will it be the aged Celtics lead by MVP like Rajon Rondo. The Lakers may repeat, but they have to go through the sizzling suns of Phoenix. The Magic might bring their first championship to Orlando but they have to go by the Celtics. The Suns could also bring their first title home.
As always, one thing is sure, the NBA playoffs will thrill its audience.
By Sam Valentin