2021 NBA Playoffs is finally here! We are still in the pandemic and the NBA has a play-in tournament and my beloved Toronto Raptors didn’t make the playoffs for the first time in 7 years. It’s just an odd year.
Anyhow, 2 days ago, I had provided you with my MoVernie Predictions for the Eastern Conference, now that we know the Memphis Grizzlies beat the Golden State Warriors, let me provide you with my MoVernie predictions for the Western Conference.
Below is the NBA Standings for the Western Conference:
For the NBA Fans who may not know how the match up works. This is how it works. The 1st place team (in this case, Philadelphia 76ers will play against the 8th seed, Washington Wizards). 2nd Place Brooklyn Nets will host the 7th seed Boston Celtics. So, that’s how the order works.
Utah Jazz (1st seed) vs Memphis Grizzlies (8th seed)
MoVernie PICK: Utah Jazz
Who would have thought that the Utah Jazz will finished #1 in the Western Conference? Unless you are a die-hard Jazz fans, I don’t think anyone would figure this one out. Anyhow, I was rooting for the Memphis Grizzlies to beat the Warriors in the play-in tournament mainly coz I feel Jonas Valančiūnas (JV) will have a better matchup against Jazz Rudy Gobert. Ja Morant is not very inconsistent and you don’t know what you get from him as he is still pretty raw. But if Morant is on fire, the Grizzlies, along with Dillon Brooks and JV will win some games. But….I am picking Utah Jazz to beat this round since they have good depth. With Joe Ingles, Mike Conley and Jordan Clarkson on the roster, it’s just too big a mountain for the Memphis to climb.
Phoenix Suns (2nd seed) vs Los Angeles Lakers (7th seed)
MoVernie PICK: LA Lakers
Congrats to the Phoenix Suns for having such an incredible season! Finishing 2nd in the Western Conference. It’s amazing how veteran leader, Chris Paul makes such a huge impact by joining the team this year. Unfortunately, just tough luck that they have to face the Los Angeles Lakers (last year’s NBA Champions). Lakers wouldn’t have to do the play-in if Anthony Davis and Lebron James were missing that many regular season games. As long as both AD and Lebron are healthy and playing in the playoffs, I expect them to get into the NBA Finals. However, if one of them are injured, then Lakers chances of a repeat is very slim. But I am picking the Lakers to beat the Suns.
Denver Nuggets (3rd seed) vs Portland Trailblazers (6th seed)
MoVernie PICK: Denver Nuggets
It’s unfortunate that the Denver Nuggets lost a mental tough point guard in Canadian Jamal Murray. He is a huge piece of the puzzle of the Nuggets starting lineup. Having said that, the Nuggets still have playmaking with Nikola Jokic (I hope he wins this year’s MVP) and they have size in Aaron Gordon and Michael Porter Jr and Paul Millsap. Portland Trailblazers may win a few games but to me, they rely too much on outside shooting, so when they collectively can’t shoot, they are going to lose with little interior presence. And as long as they have Carmelo Anthony on the roster, they won’t go far in the playoffs.
Los Angeles Clippers (4th seed) vs Dallas Mavericks (5th seed)
MoVernie PICK: LA Clippers
I luv Dallas Mavericks Luka Doncic’s game but he can’t do it alone. Even with Kristaps Porziņģis, they are lacking size inside and they don’t really have reliable 3pter shooters to complement Luka Doncic. I am expecting another early exit for the Mavs. As for the Los Angeles Clippers, they will have enough hunger and drive to win this series. Will they win the NBA Championship? No chance. I still don’t see the chemistry or the leadership between Paul George and Kawhi Leonard to carry over them deep into the playoffs.
Eastern Conference Playoffs – Final 2 Predictions
Los Angeles Clippers vs Los Angeles Lakers
Eastern Conference Finals – Philadelphia 76ers
I am picking Los Angeles Lakers to represent the West in the NBA Finals.
NBA Champion – Los Angeles Lakers
MoVernie QUESTION: What about you? What’s your predictions? Who do you like to see go deep into the NBA Finals? Which team are you most excited to watch? Which team is your underdog in the East?
Let me know as I want to hear your thoughts.