NBA Eastern Conference Playoffs: Predictions for 2011
To start off these predictions are going to be bold so bare in mind that these are including my predictions on free agency.
These predictions are going to be VERY contraversial but if you don't like it please say so in a non-demeaning manner.
I will also in the East include a risk-factor for how risky each playoff prediction is.
Without further adue, let's get started...
The Orlando Magic has made it to the Eastern Conference Finals for the second-straight year. Despite the loss of JJ Redick to free agency, it's still a pretty safe bet to say that they're going to the playoffs.
Even though the Vinsanity project didn't really work out, they still have a strong core group of players to guide them to the playoffs.
Even if the Bulls don't get LeBron, they have a respectable Center (Joakim Noah) and a more than capable Point Guard (Derrick Rose).
This alone can pose a threat, but with all these free agents roaming around, I think the Bulls will likely clinch a spot in the playoffs, even if last year they were the last seed.
With Joe Johnson reportedly agreeing to another deal with the Hawks, it seems like a sure thing.
They haven't made any drastic changes to their roster and with a No. three seed last year, that pretty much means they'll be in the playoffs again next year.
The Sixers from the looks of it are pretty solid with their current lineup, but how can you take the sixth worst team in the league and say they're going to make a playoff run the year before?
Well it includes two things: New Head Coach and the No. two Overall Draft Pick.
The Sixers probably had a season they'd like to forget last year.
Q: But why do they want to forget it?
A: Because they were bad.
Q: Why were they bad?
A: They had three coaches last year!
Not one, not two, but three?
Not to mention none of them were any good.
Just getting used to plays takes a while and for three different coaches to put their own separate versions and opinions for the players to memorize? No wonder they weren't in sync.
Now they have a good coach in Doug Collins and will hopefully hang on to him for a while.
Now to the No. two overall draft pick, Evan Turner. He will play the two Guard which will give the Sixers more scoring, which they desperately need.
When it's all said and done, I think the Sixers can sneak their way into the playoffs only to be knocked out in the first round.
HOW DID I FORGET ABOUT THIS ONE?!?!?!
Sorry people but in my last slideshow I thought I already added them in.
The Milwaukee Bucks have an emerging sophomore point guard (Brandon Jennings) who last season scored an incredible 55 points in a game!
They also have one of the best centers in the league (Andrew Bogut) who can provide scoring down low when they need it.
They also are looking to re-sign John Salmons who can put up the numbers in bunches.
This team seems very likely to make the playoffs but the real question is: How well will Brandon Jennings do?
We just have to wait to find out.
With Gerald Wallace and crew back in action and with nobody to let loose, this free agency seems like a done deal.
Wallace led this team to the playoffs last year and who's to tell him that he can't lead them again this year?
With Wade returning, he pretty much ran the team last year. And last year they were in the playoffs.
Now they have cap space to sign some serious free agents.
The Wade-Boozer match-up would be a great one and they can feed off each other.
Regardless, I think the Heat will be one team you will see in the 2011 NBA Playoffs.
With Ray Allen likely to search for a new team and Paul Pierce likely to return, the Boston Celtics have a new "Big Three".
Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Rajon Rondo.
They have it in them to make a couple more playoff runs but I don't think anybody is expecting them to pose a Championship threat.