The first weekend of round one was a blast. Don’t worry if you missed a game or two or all of them. I’ve got you covered with the biggest takeaways from all 8 games from this weekend. What teams did right and what teams will need to change going forward if they want to move on. Scroll on down through all 8 games or just find your favorite team to get caught up.
Spurs vs. Warriors
Well, it is confirmed that this series will more than likely be a snooze fest. San Antonio can’t score and Golden State is gearing up on the defensive end.
- Golden State locked in on Defense.
- Draymond Green showed up in this game and not only him but Durant did as well. The rest of the guys typically don’t have the choice to disengage, but when both of these guys are locked in then it has a serious positive affect on everyone else. Any team would have difficulties scoring on the GSW defense that came to play in this first round game
- LeMarcus Aldridge struggled scoring and shot a low percentage from the field.
- Aldridge couldn’t really take advantage in the post in this game. He scored 14 points on 41% shooting which were mainly inside shots. He struggled scoring last playoffs against Golden State and if he does the same this series will be over quick.
The Spurs have been terrible on the road all season long. I don’t expect that to change. Kawhi is clearly not coming back. Those are both large nails smashed into the Spurs coffin. I don’t put anything past Popovich, but I can’t fathom the Spurs taking more than 2 games in this series. I’m expecting another blowout tonight and then some harder fought wins to finish a sweep for the Warriors.
Wizards vs Raptors
DeRozan and Lowry didn’t disappear and John Wall and company didn’t get into a hissy fight on the other end.
- DeRozan and Lowry were awesome
- After the first half of this game I was a little worried about these two. On one hand they were sharing the ball and staying true to playing the same way they had all season which had brought them a lot of success. When things got tough they kept on trusting their teammates and it was paying off. On the other hand they had only 7 points on 8 shots combined. I was afraid until the moment the second half started. Lowry and DeRozan put up 8 of their first 10 points to begin the half. From here out they led the way on both ends of the floor.
- Toronto’s support players were not afraid of the spotlight
- Toronto’s support players were amazing as well. Even without Vanvleet they had a number of guys step up. Anunoby had 8 huge points in the first quarter. Poeltl came off the bench and provided a defense of presence and recorded 2 blocks. Delon Wright provided 18 points on 75% shooting from three point land. CJ Miles was able to knock down some deep threes and wound up 4/7 from three with 12 points.
Washington is going to need Wall to play up to his potential. He played well in the first half with 13 points and 10 assists but his shooting fell off in the second and wasn’t moving the ball as well. Toronto will be locked in and more confident from here on out. Don’t expect Washington to go down easily, though.
Heat vs 76ers
Are you still doubting Philadelphia? Who am I kidding. We’re all on that bandwagon.
- Ben Simmons is really good
- I haven’t got to see a whole lot of Ben Simmons this year. I am really impressed. His ability to get into traffic and score or find the open man is supernatural.
- Sixers fans owe Bryan Colangelo a thank you for Illyasova & Belinelli
- Both of these players have been a huge asset to the 76ers. Their ability to knock down threes and IQ have really complemented what this team is trying to do with Simmons. Since signing both of these guys Philly is 21-3.
Spoelstra is going to have to pull something out of his for this series. I wouldn’t count Miami out. The inexperience of the Sixers and the experience of the Heat makes me cautious to give this series to Philly too quickly.
Pelicans vs Blazers
Anthony Davis will be the best player in this series and the Pelicans may need some huge games from him before it’s all over.
- Jrue Holiday led the way in containing the Blazers guards
- New Orleans won this game by not letting Lillard or Mccollum take over. Jrue Holiday had a fantastic game guarding Lillard and came up with some huge plays late. If Holiday continues this defensive effort the Pelicans may walk away from this series sooner than they expect. Dame only shot 26% from the field while CJ was 39%.
- Anthony Davis was the best player on the court
- AD asserted himself on both ends of the floor. Everyone knows what his potential is. It is just up to him to bring it night in and night out. Tonight he brought it.
This series could turn out to be the most exciting one of the entire playoffs. Both teams are giving it their all on the defensive end. I wouldn’t expect Lillard and Mccollum to be denied like they were in this game the rest of the series. I certainly expect a struggle but they should hit a stride in one of these next couple games and look to turn the momentum in their favor.