The NBA postseason is coming! Who are the favorites?
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The forecast that is made at the beginning of the campaign usually changes considerably after the regular season ends. That's happening in the best basketball in the world
The best stage of the season for the NBA comes, that of the playoffs. The American professional basketball champion will be decided in the second quarter of the year (April, May, and June), once the regular season has concluded. In the balance sheet, the Golden State Warriors remain the favorites to revalidate the crown. Something safe, after four years in a row, this time the final will not be Golden State versus Cleveland Cavaliers.
Leer en español: ¡Se acerca la postemporada de la NBA! ¿quiénes son los favoritos?
The teams of the different Conferences will only face each other in the finals because first the champions of the West and the East are decided. On both sides, East and West, the series are stipulated as follows: the best record (1) against the eighth (8), and then the 2-7, 3-6 and 4-5. The winner of 1-8 goes against 4-5, while the winner of 2-7 will do the same against 3-6, explains NBA.com.
A total of three rounds that are usually called "first round" that play the best 16 of the league to eight per conference, "conference semifinals", the best 8 and four per conference, and "end of conference", the best four to two per conference, before the final with the monarch of each meeting, explains NBA.com.
All of them compete for the best of seven games, is the first to win 4, so the series can be decided between 4 and 7 games. The format for these first rounds of direct elimination is 2-2-1-1-1, which means that the best placed of the two teams that dispute that series (the one that has accumulated the best record of the two), will play as local matches 1,2,5 and 7, and the other team plays 3,4 and 6.
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The postseason data
According to NBA.com, the first round will start on Saturday, April 13. The semifinals would do so on the 29th or 30th of the same month, although they could be ahead of April 27 or 28 depending on the previous results. The Finals of the NBA if they have a definite date: it will be on May 30, 2019.
The past 28 of February classified the first equipment to the following round of official way and were the Milwaukee Bucks (This) in the Staples Center with the victory on the LA Lakers. Subsequently, they were adding by the same Conference Toronto Raptors, Philadelphia Sixers, Boston Celtics, and Indiana Pacers, and still, three places remain.
At the time of writing this article, 13 out of 16 places were insured, because the 8 are already decided, with only the order in which they will remain, Golden State Warriors, Denver Nuggets, Houston Rockets, Portland Trail Blazers, Utah Jazz, LA Clippers, San Antonio Spurs and Oklahoma City Thunder closed NBA.com.
Another article on the NBA website says that after the end of the extended regular schedule of 82 games on Wednesday, April 10, the postseason will begin immediately on Saturday, April 13, and is undoubtedly one of the most extended professional sport of the United States, because it would be extended in a hypothetical seventh game of the final, until June 16.
In that plane, as we said, the Golden State Warriors are still the main candidates to revalidate the crown, even though what nobody expected is that, at this point, the Milwaukee Bucks of Greek Giannis Antetokounmpo, great candidate for MVP, were so good positioned as one of the favorites, says ABC. The Denver Nuggets, with Nikola Jokic as a figure, has also been a pleasant surprise since the initial predictions placed him as a possible playoff qualifier but not as the main contender of the Warriors in the West.
They were the two teams that showed the most growth in place of a doubt since the campaign before this. Meanwhile, the big failure could be the Los Angeles Lakers, who did not even reach their minimum goal with LeBron James, which was, to qualify for the postseason. This campaign, however, looks more difficult the mission, because the Warriors, despite a somewhat irregular campaign, were reinforced with an elite player like Demarcus Cousins, while, on the contrary, Rockets, lost to Trevor Ariza. However, they keep Chris Paul, center Clint Capela and of course his great star, James Harden.
If we go to the East and observe the ABC forecast before the start of the campaign, which had the Celtics as the great candidate for having played the final of the previous year and for the complete recovery of Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward, we must say that today looks far from reality. They can win the conference clearly, but of course, they should improve a lot to what has been shown so far.
The Raptors, if they had frequently been fighting in the East against the LeBron Cavs, are the second favorite after incorporating Kawhi Leonard and later Marc Gasol, which has made them a better team, with only one outstanding issue: improve in the postseason phases where they have not shown character.
Then there is a team that paints, if it maintains its structure, to be the great rival of the Eastern Conference in two years: the Philadelphia Sixers. That with Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons as props, they have managed to reinforce themselves with quality men like Jimmy Butler and Tobias Harris.
According to the Somos Basket website, the Warriors were the unanimous favorite at the beginning of the campaign with a probability of -150, above the Celtics, which amounted to a +1000 forecast but which gradually decreased as the campaign went on.
Those from California are favorites by decree, adding 3 of the last four championships with the duo Steve Kerr and Stephen Curry implementing a new style of play: the offensive, which is also what prevails in this campaign.
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Translated from "¡Se acerca la postemporada de la NBA! ¿quiénes son los favoritos?"