With the first round finally finished, the playoffs seem to be on the table. In the East, two out of four series came down to a game 7, and in the West, just one game ended in under 7 games. Overall, five out of the eight series went all the way to a game 7. The 2014 playoffs seem to be one of the most evenly matched playoffs in a while. The top seeds were tested, and now it seems that no one team is going to win it all easily. Kenston student Adam Vanek said, "I can't wait until the NBA Finals are here".
Western Conference: (1) San Antonio Spurs vs. (5) Portland Trailblazers and (2) Oklahoma City Thunder vs. (3) Los Angeles Clippers. Eliminated: (8) Dallas Mavericks, (4) Houston Rockets, (7) Memphis Grizzlies, (6) Golden State Warriors.
Eastern Conference: (1) Indiana Pacers vs. (6) Washington Wizards and (2) Miami Heat vs. (6) Brooklyn Nets. Eliminated: (7) Charlotte Bobcats, (3) Toronto Raptors, (4) Chicago Bulls, (8) Atlanta Hawks
As the first round of the playoffs wind down, here is an update on the 2014 NBA Playoffs. Kenston student, Jackson Nessi said, “I love the playoffs, it is my favorite time of the year behind Christmas, and Halloween…and summer.”. Eastern Conference: The Miami Heat defeated the Charlotte Bobcats in four games, winning the series four games to none and providing fans the first sweep of the playoffs. The number one seed Indiana Pacers trail the Atlanta Hawks by one game in a 3-2 series. The Washington Wizards beat the Chicago Bulls in a 4-1 series win. Washington is one of the big surprises in the playoffs. The third seed, the Toronto Raptors, have a 3-2 series lead over the Brooklyn Nets. Miami is the obvious leader of the East right now, but Washington, Toronto and Atlanta are playing well too.
The Western Conference is shaping up to be just as exciting. The Spurs have taken a 3-2 series lead over the Dallas Mavericks. The Spurs got off to a slow start, but seemed to have found there rhythm winning their last two games. The Oklahoma City seemed to have met their match, being down 3-2 in a series against the 7th seed Grizzlies. The story in this series is Tony Allen and the Grizzlies' defense being able to shut down the Thunders' powerful offense. The Houston Rockets trail the Portland Trailblazers in another 3-2 series. Houston has played well, but has not quite been able to keep up with Portland consistently. LaMarcus Aldridge is averaging 29.8 ppg, 10.8 rpg, 3.8 bpg, and 2.0 apg. Last but certainly not least, the Los Angeles Clippers lead the Golden State Warriors 3 games to 2 games. Here is an overall view of the playoffs as of May 1st, 2014:
Over Spring Break, the Cavs' season came to an end. Even with their excellent play in 2014, they missed the playoffs for the fourth straight year. The Cavs' win percentage in 2014 was nearly 50%, and they were in the playoff race until they had just 4 games left in the regular season. The Cavs are very optimistic about next season. Mitch Lyons said," I think that the Cavs will be really good once they gain more experience and leadership". The Cavs are looking to acquire veteran players to add experience and leadership to the vast amount of young talent that they have. Hopefully, the Cavs can improve their teams and become a legitimate contender in the NBA.
The Cavaliers have four free agents this off season. They are Luol Deng, C.J. Miles, Seth Curry, and Spencer Hawes. The Cavs openly stated that they wish to resign Spencer Hawes, and Luol Deng as well. The Cavs also are viewing the possibility of Lebron James coming back home to Cleveland. There are other big name free agents this off season such as Carmelo Anthony, Eric Bledsoe, Gordon Hayward, and Greg Monroe. The Cavs will look to improve their team in the off season by adding skill and improving the young talent they already have. This is a big off season for the Cavs, and we will have to see how they handle it.
Last night the Cavs crushed the Detroit Pistons, 100-122. It was bittersweet, though, as the Hawks won and eliminated them from playoff contention. This means that the Cavs will miss out on the playoffs for their fourth straight year. Everything the Cavs accomplished last night, including setting a franchise high for assists in a half, is overshadowed by them being eliminated. Mitch Lyons said, "I was really hoping that they could have made the playoffs this year, but I know that we will make it next year". The Hawks and Knicks are now in a battle for the eighth seed in a weak Eastern Conference. There is under two weeks left in the regular season, and then it is on to the playoffs for the top eight teams from each conference. With plenty of good teams in the playoffs, it is sure to be exciting.
After the Cavaliers got off to a slow start in 2013, they have won 5 of their last 6 games and are looking to claim the eighth seed in a weak Eastern Conference.The Cavaliers are playing very well as off late knocking off five of their last six opponents and pulling to within 2 games of the playoffs. The Cavs have gotten All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving back from injury and seem to be stronger than they have been all year. Dion Waiters, Jarrett Jack, and Kyrie have been blending well and running the team with great execution. The late aquisitions of Luol Deng and Spencer Hawes certianly have made the Cavaliers a frightening team for opponents. Mitch Lyons said, "I really hope the Cavs can make the playoffs." If the Cavs can continue their stellar play, then it is very possible they will be in the payoffs.
The Cavaliers play what might be the most important game of the season against the Atlanta Hawks on Friday, April 4th. The tip-off is at 7: 30 pm, so make sure you turn on Fox Sports Ohio and watch. If the Cavaliers win, they will be only one game back and pull closer to the payoffs. The Cavs have been playing great basketball as of late, but if they want to make the playoffs now is the time to dig deep and come up with wins. Let's Go Cavs!