- 03/16/2011, 07:42PM ET
Serial Dex said 03/16, 07:42 PM
It has to be the defending champ Lakers.
They're the favorite as of this point in the season (March 13-19).
They've got depth, size, stars and defense.
They're the defending champs.
They've got Kobe.
They're 48-20, even though many media pundits have said "they look bored" or "they are on cruise control." Most teams in the league would be blessed to have the problem of winning 70% of their games without trying that hard.
San Antonio, Dallas, Miami, Boston, Orlando, Chicago and the Thunder all have great teams that can challenge, but I can point out problems with all of them. Pick one of these guys (or a sleeper if you really believe in the Knicks or something) and tell me why they can:
1. Get to the Finals
2. Beat LA (either to get there, or in the Finals)
I say you can't do it.
Odom has been a beast this year.
Bynum is back and seemingly healthy. They won last year without him (or with him playing hurt).
Gasol is averaging a double double on the year.
Barnes, Blake and Artest are X factors that could pour in 20 on any night when nobody sees it coming.
What do you got?
HOBBES said 03/16, 09:56 PM
Without a doubt, the Chicago Bulls will win the Finals.
AS many have guessed, I'm going with the team that was there last year too, the Boston Celtics.
As hot as the Lakers have been lately, you still cant forget about some of the losses they've had this season.
San Antonio: 1-2
They have 12 losses vs .500+ teams.
Boston only has 10.
Still, Boston proved last year that the regular season matters little heading into the playoffs.
The main things to focus on are...
Even without Perkins, this unit has proven to be a stout defensive team.
The Celtics are virtually tied with Chicago for the Best defense overall in the league.
Boston: 91.20 OPP PPG
95.00 OPP PPG
Also the Celtics have the most efficient team in the league, have the most assists in the league, and allow the fewest assists in the league.
Lakers in parenthesis
1st- 0.489 FG% (0.465 8th)
1st- 24.08 APG (21.99 12th)
1st- 18.75 OPP APG (22.27 21st )
These are all VERY important stats for the playoffs, where defense and efficiency matter the most.
Serial Dex said 03/17, 02:57 PM
Boston is being lambasted by everyone in sports for getting rid of Perkins.
NOBODY understands that move.
Boston was the best challenger for the Lakers because of their height. The O'Neal guys were considered nice additions or upgrades, but everyone knew that Davis and Perkins were going to combine with Garnett to match up with Bynum, Gasol and Odom.
Now you are going to rely on who exactly?
Shaq who hasn't played in 2 months?
Troy Murphy who has played 26 games this year?
Davis just hurt himself!
Your best player of your "big 4" up front right now is Nenad Krstic. Do you really think the Lakers are afraid of Krstic?
Lets look at the Celtics big guys per game outside of Garnett:
Shaq: 5 rebounds, 1.2 blocks
Davis: 5.5 rebounds, 0.4 blocks
Krstic: 7 boards, 0.4 blocks
Murphy: 3 boards, 0.1 blocks
Those people aren't intimidating. Those are pedestrian numbers
The Lakers big guys?
They are averaging 10, 9 and 9 rebounds per. They have 1.9, 1.6 and 0.8 blocks per.
The height is where it's at for these teams. Boston has a lot of depth, but none of it stands out. You have to go with the Lakers bigs, and Kobe
Serial Dex said 03/19, 12:46 PM
Look at last night vs Houston.
The Rockets are a fringe team at best right now. They don't have a star or a dominant team, yet last night they decimated the Celtics.
Garnett led the starters with just 5 boards.
Rondo shot 2-11 from the field.
Houston outrebounded them. They hit 7 more three pointers. They beat them in every way. The Celtics even lost their cool, with technicals dished out and flagrant fouls.
This is supposed to be a Championship team and they can't even handle the Rockets or lose gracefully. The Rockets didn't even have Scola in the lineup, arguably their best player.
Patrick Patterson, Jordan Hill and Chuck Hayes all had between 9 and 11 rebounds. If the Celtics can't handle the Rockets big men, do you think they can handle Odom, Gasol and Bynum?
The Rockets starting back court combined for 45 points. If they can't hold Kyle Lowry back, do you think they can stop Kobe?
yes this was only 1 game, but it is indicative of the Celtics not having the size to stop big guys. It also shows that if Rondo is off, the opps back court can dominate.
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