Crushed Optimists

We are twin brothers who grew up in Central Washington. This blog is devoted to the life of Seattle sports fans, as well as various other topics that we will espouse for your enjoyment. We could be called another OFFICIAL SEATTLE SEAHAWKS site, but we'll take our uneducated crack at the Mariners, Sonics, and Huskies as well. A Seattle Sports Blog? Must be the land... of crushed optimism!

Thursday, April 28, 2005

NBA Playoffs - 1st Round Review

Two games into the first round and I have to say, this has got to be one of the lamest first rounds in NBA history. And they actually extend the misery by making it a best of seven series. I can barely watch most of these games, as they are ALL BLOWOUTS. Anyways, on to the matchups...

Miami vs New Jersey (Miami up 2-0)
Vince Carter can't shoot when he's covered by three people. Even though Shaq hasn't dominated (doesn't he say that he "rests" to dominate now... when's that going to happen?) Alonzo Mourning, Damon Jones, and this year's MVP Dwayne Wade have run circles around the nets. Jason Kidd can make two highlight level plays and then not play defense. The Nets gave up their entire frontcourt to grab Carter, and it shows against the bigger Heat. New Jersey will have to pull a major upset to not be swept.

Detroit vs Philadelphia (Detroit up 2-0)
Two games, two large Philly leads, two large Detroit comebacks, two sizeable Detroit wins. The pattern of each of the games have been remarkably similar, yet Detroit never panics, stays true to themselves and their game, and slowly but surely makes their run. It probably helps that Philadelphia has no inside game and that they defend with four while Webber is on the floor. Essentially, these past two series should have been byes, and then we wouldn't have had to watch.

Boston vs Indiana (Series tied 1-1)
Game one, Boston rolls. Game two, Boston folds. Yes, Reggie does get a lot of calls, but don't tell me you aren't just hoping for two things... one more clutch playoff shot, and a seven game series against Detroit. Please, Lord, make this happen. Still, gotta root for the Glove.

Chicago vs Washington (Chicago up 2-0)
The first "defense wins" series in the playoffs. Chicago plays defense. Washington doesn't, and doesn't have a good enough offense to recover. I'm still a little surprised that Chicago won both games, but you cannot argue with what you see out of them. Big props to Kirk Hinrich, who along with Nick Collison prove that nice white guys can make it in the NBA.

Phoenix vs Memphis (Phoenix up 2-0)
Phoenix has played the exact same way they played in the regular season and I still find it hard to imagine being as successful as they are. They play absolutely zero defense. None. Pau Gasol could have laid it in twenty times last night. And yet they are so absolutely explosive and hit the offensive glass so well that it seems like they are slumping when they score 120. Not many teams that will be able to outshoot Phoenix, and Memphis played their best game last night. Lucky to win one.

San Antonio vs Denver (Series tied 1-1)
Denver was unable to combat San Antonio's desperation at the beginning of Game 2. Played them even the rest of the game, but desperate teams with tons of talent are hard to beat. Still, mission accomplished for the Nuggets in taking one of two from the best home team in the country. I still will call this for San Antonio, but I think it's going to go seven. The Nuggets' front line has been impressive... if they could actually hit some threes I'd be more impressed.

Seattle vs Sacramento (Seattle leads 2-0)
Seattle has dominated this series physically and mentally, and Sacramento will need one heck of a rally to steal four games. I wouldn't be optimistic if I was a Kings' fan... Rashard Lewis hasn't even had a good game yet.

Dallas vs Houston (Houston leads 2-0)
The most surprising series so far. Dallas looked strong entering the playoffs, but Tracy McGrady has looked absolutely outstanding, and the Houston bench (maligned by us in our preview) has been fantastic. Dallas is still the more talented team, and is the only team down 2-0 with a realistic shot of winning the series. Dirk Nowitzki has to be more aggressive, take the ball to the hole and get fouls on McGrady, if he insists on defending him. He can't just take all these jumpers. Dallas also needs their defense, which had been so much better, to actually be better, because Houston is a slow boring team, not this fast-breaking jump shooting imposter.


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