First round of 2016 NBA playoffs recap


Edyn Convery

The NBA playoffs are heating up.

Joe Padula, Staff Writer

1 vs 8 Matchups

Cleveland Cavilers vs Detroit Pistons

Cleveland wins series 4-0

Although two out of four games in the series were decided by five points or less including a series clinching 100-98 victory the outcome of this series was never really in question with Lebron James and Kyrie Iving leading the defending Eastern Conference Champions to the next round. It should be no surprise to see a Lebron James lead team poised to make a deep run in the playoffs for James has appear in the NBA finals each of the past five seasons with the Miami Heat ( his former team)  and of course the Cavs. Although it should be noted that for the second time in his entire career Lebron did not lead his team in scoring throughout a playoff series as Iving outscored Lebron, 27.5 points per game compared to Lebron’s 22.8 per game.

Golden State Warriors vs Houston Rockets

Golden State wins series 4-1

Considering the reigning NBA MVP (almost sure bet to win the award again this season) and the unquestioned leader of the Warriors: Steph Curry only appeared in two games of this series because of injuries it wouldn’t be out of the question to think that the Rockets could’ve made this a more interesting series. However Golden State did not win the most games in the regular season history because of one player. This team is full of talent and it is really no surprise that the team easily blew past the disappointing Rockets in five games.

2 vs 7 Matchups

Toronto Raptors vs Indiana Pacers

Toronto wins series 4-3

Paul George did everything in his power to propel his team into the next round including a 39 point game five in this series. George averaged 27.3 per game in this series and was clearly the best player on the court during the series. The All-Star Backcourt for the Raptors seemed to disappear at times during the series. However Kyle Lowry and Demar Derozan showed up when the team needed them most, including a 30 point effort from Derozan in the deciding game seven. This was Toronto’s first playoff series victory since 2001.

San Antonio Spurs vs Memphis Grizzlies

San Antonio wins series 4-0

No surprise this series ended the way it did. With the Spurs being as good as they are and with the Grizzlies who have been battling injury problems all season long were playing with a depleted roster. The Spurs dominated every aspect of this series and won three out of the four games in this series by 19 points or more. Look for Greg Popovich and his squad to carry their moment into the upcoming series as the Spurs appear to be primed for yet another long playoff run.

3 vs 6 Matchups

Miami Heat vs Charlotte Hornets

Miami wins series 4-3

The Heat battled their way into the next round after winning the first two games of the series they dropped three straight games and were one loss away from elimination. The Dwyane Wade lead team did not fold under pressure and won the next two games in this series including a 32 point game seven victory. The Heat are a very dangerous team and may be the only team in the east that can give the Cavs a run especially if 11 time All Star Chris Bosh returns to the lineup.

Oklahoma City Thunder vs Dallas Mavericks

Oklahoma City wins series 4-1

The dynamic duo of Russel Westbrook and Kevin Durant that has lead the team to many victories in the past, did the same during this series. Russel Westbrook recorded a double-double in every game off the series and Kevin Durant averaged 25 points per game. The pesky Mavericks did not give into the superior Thunder, though somehow managing to steel game two at Oklahoma City to tie the series at one game apiece.  However the thunder would go on to win the next three games, a healthy Chandler Parsons for the Mavs could’ve made this series much more interesting. The Thunder are a very dangerous team.

4 vs 5 Matchups

Atlanta Hawks vs Boston Celtics

Atlanta wins series 4-2

The Atlanta Hawks used suffocating defense and took advantage of a banged-up Celtics squad who managed to push the series to six games after drooping the first two games in Atlanta. Isaiah Thomas’s play is one positive thing that the Celtics can take away from this series going into next year. I don’t foresee Atlanta making it out of the next round.

Los Angeles Clippers vs Portland Trail Blazers

Portland wins series 4-2

After starting off the series with two wins the Clippers appeared to be in great positon to advance to the next round. Although dropping game three in Portland, the Clips still appeared to be in control. However disaster stuck for LA as they saw their two all-star’s Chris Paul and Blake Griffin leave the game with serious injuries that would keep them sidelined for the next several weeks.  With Chris Paul and Blake Griffin sidelined the Trail Blazers ripped off three more wins behind their game changing Point Guard Damian Lillard who was an unstoppable force throughout the series. Although the team didn’t win a game after Paul and Griffin were injured the team did not give up and battled until the end.

As round two matchups have already started two teams find themselves with commanding 2-0 series leads as Golden State leads the Trail Blazers and the Cavilers lead the Hawks. The Thunder and Spurs find their selves tied at one game apiece after OKC managed a one point game two victory in San Antonio where the Spurs have only lost two games all season. The Heat took game one from the Raptors in Toronto.