The NBA Playoffs are about to start and each round consists of seven games each unlike the original format where opening round series were a best-of-five. Now that means the worst playoff teams just have more games to lose this season.
Fifteen years ago an NBA playoff series of Cleveland versus Chicago meant that Phil Jackson with his multi-championship team with Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, and Dennis Rodman were going to destroy the Cleveland Cavaliers in three games during their opening round series in the one versus eight matchup. This year, it means that Cleveland is ready to demolish the hapless Bulls.
The Cavaliers finished the season with a 61-21 record and finished 15 games ahead of Milwaukee in the Central Division standings in the Eastern Conference. The best player in the league, LeBron James, is still a relatively young 25 years of age and is due to become a free agent at the end of this season. He didn’t play in the last game against the Hawks, which Cleveland lost, but resting the star player for a grueling playoff run will help ensure Cleveland makes it to finals this year. He is a complete player as he leads the team in scoring, assists, and steals.
Last year’s playoff series against Orlando was a thing of beauty with three games ending on last-second shots and the series going to Orlando in a huge upset in a six-game Conference Final. No way is that going to happen again this year. If Shaq can stay healthy and Antawn Jamison helps as he always does, no one can stop the Cavaliers.
Well, the Bulls completed the year at 41-41 and should make an early exit in both the playoffs and with few games won if any. The Central Division rivals of the Cavaliers, Chicago actually defeated the Cavs twice this year just barely. Including the game April 8th without LeBron James in the lineup, Chicago won two games by a total of two points.
Chicago only got into the playoffs by tying the Toronto Raptors towards the last of the season and now that LeBron James will be back, Chicago won’t do much even though they are young and inexperienced. The Bulls have six guys scoring in double figures but don’t get many assists per game. They are quasi-ball hogs who haven’t learned to play like a team yet.
If the Bulls can pull it together they’ll win one game, but the dream match up will happen this year when the Cavs play the Los Angeles Lakers in the NBA Finals. Look for Cleveland to win in five games tops over the Chicago Bulls.
ESPN is my major source for this article.