2016 NBA Playoffs Second Round Betting Predictions
The Golden State Warriors and San Antonio Spurs are both 1-0 up in their respective second round series of the 2016 NBA playoffs, but the majority of the second round games will be starting this week after some of the round one matchups stretched to as many as seven games. In this article, we will be taking a brief look at the second round matchups and what bettors can expect from the remaining teams in the NBA odds to reach the 2016 Conference Championships.
2016 NBA Playoffs Second Round Betting Predictions
Golden State Warriors vs. Portland Trail Blazers
My Prediction:Warriors Win Series in 5 Games
The Trail Blazers were one of the three teams with a winning record (the other being San Antonio and Boston) to win a game against Golden State in the regular season and they hanged pretty well with Golden State in Game 1 of their playoff meeting on Sunday. With that motivation, and the two-guard punch of Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum leading the team, the Blazers should be motivated to at least steal one game in Portland or even at the Oracle Arena. But as far as winning the series is concerned, Golden State should be your obvious pick. Not only have the Warriors proven that they can win on the road and at home without Stephen Curry, but Klay Thompson and Draymond Green have upped their performances in the absence of Steph, keeping both the GSW offense and defense in check. With these two All-Stars (who combined to score 60 points, 18 rebounds and 16 assists in the 118-106 win over Portland in Game 1) shining and the bench also continuing to contribute with solid points and rebounds, the Warriors should be all but guaranteed to beat the Trail Blazers en route to the Western Conference Final.
San Antonio Spurs vs. Oklahoma City Thunder
My Prediction:Spurs Win Series in 7 Games
In case you didn’t get the memo, here’s what’s up–The San Antonio Spurs mean business this year. Dating back to the regular season, the Spurs have won 7 straight games, two of those wins coming over the Thunder (a 102-98 win at the end of the regular season and a 124-92 blowout last Saturday when the two teams met for Game 1 of their second-round playoff matchup). The Saturday triumph was particularly impressive, as San Antonio’s league-leading scoring defense held the explosive Thunder duo of Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook to just 11-for-34 shooting, while the offense shot over 60 percent from the field in arguably their best offensive showcase this season. If the Spurs, who swept Memphis in round once, can continue to stay hot offensively and click efficiently in the defense, it will be hard to see OKC winning this series. It should, however, be noted that the Thunder split the four regular season meetings against San Antonio in the regular season, with both teams winning their respective home matchups. I would therefore not be surprised to see Oklahoma City dragging this series all the way to seven games, with San Antonio simply getting the slight edge because of their home court advantage.
Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Atlanta Hawks
My Prediction:Cavaliers Win Series in 5 Games
For the second year running, the Cavaliers and the Hawks will be meeting in the Eastern playoffs. The good news for Atlanta is that the team is coming into this series healthier than it was last season, with a big difference-maker in Kyle Korver, who missed most of last year’s series against Cleveland due to injury. Not to mention, the Hawks are playing better defense than last year, which should motivate them for a strong show against Cleveland. The bad news for Atlanta; they’ll be going against LeBron James, who has pretty much owned them since making his return to Cleveland last year. During the four-game sweep over the Hawks last spring, James flirted with a triple-double, averaging 30.3 points, 11.0 rebounds and 9.3 assists. And in two regular-season meetings against the Hawks this season, LBJ torched Atlanta for an average of 31.5 points, 11 rebounds and 7.5 assists, leading the Cavs to two wins. Added to the fact that the Cavs are more rested after sweeping Detroit in round one, and Cleveland’s starters in Kyrie Irving, Kevin Love and J.R Smith are enjoying splendid form in this year; the Cavs look the part of being able to beat Atlanta again. We don’t, however, expect it to be a sweep, with Atlanta probably stealing a game or two to take the series to 5 or 6 games.
Toronto Raptors vs. Miami Heat
My Prediction:Heat Win Series in 7 Games
The Raptors and Heat didn’t have it easy, but they both managed to come through as winners over the Indiana Pacers and Charlotte Hornets, respectively, in seven games. Up next is a clash between the veteran-laden Miami team that boasts of great postseason success in its history and a young Toronto team that just won its first seven-game series in franchise history. More notably, the Raptors have home court advantage in this series and they are coming off a solid year that saw them take 3 of 4 games from Heat during the regular season. Will Dwayne Wade and Miami deliver an upset over Toronto or will Toronto’s All-Star backcourt of Kyle Lowrie and DeMar DeRozan lead the Raps past the second round? Obviously, this series could go either way, but my bet is on Miami using its experience see out a hotly contested series in 6 or 7 games.