Friday, May 11, 2012

Boomer's Slam Dunk: Finishing the First Round & Previewing Eastern Conf. Semis

Well, "Rock" followers, I was really in hopes of being able to provide you all, with a complete Conference Semifinals Preview from each conference, but thanks a lot to the LA-based teams it will have to be a continuous post/update into the weekend. Right now, I guess I will let you in on how I see the two LA series ending and give you my take/predictions/preview on the two Eastern Conference Semifinals that start up this weekend.

Western Conference: First Round

#4 Memphis Grizzlies vs. #5 LA Clippers Series: Clippers lead 3-2

Game 6: Tonight (ESPN 9 PM EST) in LA
Game 7: Sunday (ABC 1 PM EST) in Memphis **if needed**

Man, has this series been entertaining, as predicted. Right from the first game, with the Clippers epic comeback victory to steal one in Memphis, to Rudy Gay's miss of a potential GW 3 in Game 3. The Grizzlies showed some toughness in Game 5 back at home in Memphis, and some concerning injuries for the Clippers top two stars: Griffin (knee) and Paul (thumb,hip), have the folks in Hollywood a little "uneasy" heading into Game 6 tonight at the STAPLES Center. I'm sticking with my original prediction (Grizzles in 7), hoping  Gay and Co. can steal tonight's game in LA, then ride the home fans to a series deciding Game 7 on Mother's Day. SEE YOU SUNDAY! SEE YOU SUNDAY!

#3 LA Lakers vs. #6 Denver Nuggets Series: Tied 3-3

Game 7: Saturday (TNT 10:30 PM EST) in LA

One of the greatest things in all of sports: Game 7. The winners move on with hopes of archiving the ultimate prize, while the losers go home for the summer, and wonder "what if". We got to this point, because the Lakers were unable to finish the series up at home in Game 5 (Tuesday), and then were routed last night in the "Mile High City" in Game 6 to force the deciding Game 7 tomorrow night. The Lakers, last night were playing with a ill-Kobe and fell behind 13-0 right out of the gates. Now, I know I had the Lakers winning this series in 6, It looks like it will take 'em one more to finish off the Nuggets (who were ready all series), I still believe the Lakers will find a way to win a Game 7 on their home court tomorrow night, but it won't be easy at all.

The #1 SA Spurs and #2 OKC Thunder both had first round series sweeps and have been resting up for their Conference Semifinals opponent for a week or more. Will rust play a factor for either of these two teams once they resume their playoff run? Look forward to a preview once the final two 1st round series wrap up this weekend.

Eastern Conference Semifinals

#8 Philadelphia 76ers vs. #4 Boston Celtics Regular Season Series: Sixers 2-1

Game 1: Saturday (TNT 8 PM EST) in Boston
Game 2: Monday (TNT 7 PM EST) in Boston
Rest of the series at this time is TBD

An old-fashion rivalry is renewed in this years edition of the NBA playoffs. Celtics/76ers have had their moments over the years in the playoffs (especially during the 1980's). This edition should be no different to the ones from the past. The #8 seeded Sixers upset the #1 seeded Chicago Bulls in the first round (Sixers 4-2), despite the Bulls being without Derrick Rose for five of those games, the 76ers took advantage of the situation and provided they have a very young/athletic team to go along with a very old Head Coach (Doug Collins). The Celtics had another tough series with their rivals from the south (Atlanta Hawks) and despite not having home-court in the series, the veteran/experienced C's defeated the Hawks in Game 6 (Called It). In this series, the Celtics have the home-court advantage and history is not on the side of #8 seeds advancing past this round of the playoffs (only once before, 1999 NY Knicks). Celtics in 5. 

#3 Indiana Pacers vs. #2 Miami Heat Regular Season Series: Heat 3-1

Game 1: Sunday (ABC 3:30 PM EST) in Miami
Game 2: Tuesday (TNT 7 PM EST) in Miami
Rest of the series at this time is TBD

A very intriguing upcoming series between those two teams. Both teams made quick work of their first round opponents (Heat in 5 vs. the Knicks, Nailed It!; Pacers in 5 vs. the Magic, Two for Two!), and got some needed rest headed into this series. On paper, you see a three-headed monster, check that its LeBron and D. Wade, Chris Bosh hasn't done much of anything to be considered the "Big 3" vs. a team that most of you probably would have a hard time in naming off their starting five (Go ahead, try it). I would really like to see this series go the distance, but I'm not sure the Pacers have the playoff experience to hang with the Heat, although the x-factor will be how the Pacers bench does vs. the Heat bench, slight advantage goes to the Bird's Boys in that category. I'll have my "Beat the Heat" chant a rocking and rolling in this one but in the end... Heat in 6.

Enjoy all the NBA action this weekend and make sure to tell your mom's you "Love 'Em" on Mother's Day.