NBA Playoffs First Round Decided: East Edition

The 2022 NBA Playoffs have been a delight to all NBA fans. And the crazy thing is, it is only the first round of the playoffs. Here is how the Eastern Conference is shaping out.

Miami V Atlanta

This series is going as expected. The Miami Heat is the first seed and it shows as they are currently up 3 to 1 in the series. The Heat as a team has shown that they can stop Hawks’ star point guard Trae Young, from dominating. So far in this series, Young is averaging 16.5 points per game on 35.1 field goal percentage and 21.2 percent from 3-point range after 4 games. He also is averaging 6.0 assists per game but also adds 6.0 turnovers per game. He has a +/- of negative 13.8. The Heat’s plan is simply to shut down the star and win the game as a team.

Boston V Brooklyn

This series has been surprisingly lopsided in terms of the current situation of the wins and losses. Before the season, Brooklyn was the favorite to win the NBA championship. So the Boston Celtics being up 3 to 0 is peculiar as in January, they weren’t even in play-in tournament contention. After turning this season around, point guard Marcus Smart has won the Defensive Player of the Year. His defense, along with the whole team has completely neutralized Brooklyn’s superstar player in small forward Kevin Durant. While he is averaging 22.0 points per game, he is doing it on 36.5 field goal percentage. He also has 5.7 turnovers per game and +/- of negative 8.3. He’s also shown signs of being scared and not being ready for the moment. No team has ever come back after being down 3 to 0.

Milwaukee V Chicago

At one point, the series looked like it could have been interesting, but it just doesn’t anymore. After Game 2, it was announced that the Milwaukee Bucks will be without their second star small forward Khris Middleton after an injury to his knee. The series was also tied at 1 game apiece. But thanks to Giannis Antetokounmpo and other players stepping up, they won the next 2 games. Statistically, Antetokounmpo has dominated with 27.5 points per game and 7.0 assists per game. Defensively, he is averaging 14.5 rebounds per game and 1.8 blocks per game. His +/- is positive 17.0 and it shows as the last two games have ended in blowout wins. The Bucks hope to have Middleton back before facing the Celtics. 

Philadelphia V Toronto 

Before the completion of Game 1, ESPN gave the Toronto Raptors a 42 percent chance to win the series. Well, that prediction looked really bad after the Raptors were down 0 to 3. It looks better now after the Raptors managed to avoid the sweep in Game 4. But they only managed to prolong the inevitable, the Philadephia 76ers will win this series. It isn’t a matter of if, but when. Potential MVP center Joel Embiid has dominated with 26 points per game and 11.8 rebounds per game. Young star shooting guard Tyrese Maxey adds 22.8 points per game on 50/40/90 efficiency. How will this duo contend against the Heat in the second round?

Overall, the Eastern Conference has been interesting, to say the least.