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08/09 NBA Playoff Betting Projections

2009 Playoffs – NBA Predictions – Who’s In…Out?

Figuring out where it all went wrong for the Suns this season is like examining the McCain-Palin campaign. A mid-season coaching change and a complete offensive makeover haven’t been able to staunch the bleeding in the desert, and when the Western Conference regular-season music stops in a little over a week, the Suns will be the ones without an NBA playoff chair.

Any chance they had of sneaking in the back door as an 8 seed and providing canon fodder for the Lakers in the first round circled the toilet earlier this week when Phoenix lost to – of all people! – A Sacramento team that has just about thrown in the towel itself.

Arizona basketball fans had figured that the schedule down the stretch would provide a firewall for the Suns, whose final four games will be against Memphis (twice), Minnesota and Golden State (combined 64-155 through weekend game). But the door will likely be slammed shut on the Suns well before the final game of the season.

The Suns will have some tough decisions to make as they make a rare appearance in Piscataway N.J. for the draft lottery in a few months. Steve Nash will be back in 2009-10, but Grant Hill and Shaquille O’Neal don’t have much wear left on their tires. Amare Stoudemire returns next year after sitting out much of this season with an eye injury, but the Suns tried to trade him before the All-Star break. Much like the Detroit Pistons, the Suns are in decline and are facing an uncertain future.

Elsewhere in the West:

*** The Lakers’ 76-point bowser in Atlanta is clear evidence that Phil Jackson is taking his foot off the accelerator and will ratchet down minutes for his key players. The Lakers have been only an average team ATS, and with the public usually behind them, it should be a good time to go the other way.

*** With a schedule heavily laden with home games, Denver should be able to hold off Portland in the Northwest and also keep San Antonio and Houston at bay for the No. 2 Western seed.

IN THE EAST, the Charlotte Bobcats will run out of real estate but deserve props for a late-season 11-5 run, just enough to make Detroit uncomfortable but not enough to keep the Pistons out of the playoffs since 2001. The Pistons will probably go down in 4 or 5 games if they catch the Cavs in the first round, but could take it to 6 if they draw Orlando.

The Magic should have no trouble holding off Boston for the second seed as the Celtics will spend the next two weeks getting injured players ready for the playoffs. The Celtics appear recovered from a nasty stretch in which they covered the number only once in 11 games, but with an uncertain rotation they’re not a good place for money in the next two weeks.

With the Cavs finishing strong, Boston just about ceding the No. 2 seed to the Magic, Atlanta a lock for No. 4 and Miami solid at No. 5, the only intrigue in the East centers around Philadelphia and the two Rust Belt franchises, Detroit and Chicago. The Bulls have a huge edge with a home-heavy finishing schedule while the Pistons grind it out on the road.

FIRST-ROUND MATCHUP PREDICTIONS

Western Conference

Lakers-Mavericks – Mavs in rapid decline; Lakers in 5
Nuggets-Jazz – Upset special; Jazz in 7
Spurs-Hornets – San Antonio’s horses are wearing down; Hornets in 7
Rockets-Trail Blazers – Portland a year away; Rockets in 6

Eastern Conference

Cavaliers-Pistons – Mere formality; Cleveland sweep
Magic-Bulls – Is anyone sold on the Magic? Orlando in 6
Celtics-76ers – Sixers don’t match up well against Celts; Boston in 5
Hawks-Heat – Hawks are a better cover team but Miami wins series in 6

Think You Know Who Is Going To Win The 2009 NBA Championship? Bet On It @ JustBet.com Online Sportsbook Today!!!

 

Lawrence Paul is a regular contributor to the Cappers Picks Blog, and is a free-lance gambling and travel writer from Massachusetts. He is personally responsible for the election of Barack Obama and has also taught himself how to juggle?  He can be reached at newenglandhoops.net.

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About Lawrence Paul

Lawrence Paul is back in the saddle as a regular contributor to the Cappers Picks Blog. He's got an AMAZING knack for predicting when a team will have a letdown! Stick with our resident gambling experts sports betting tips all season long!


Comments

Comments

  1. I’m sold on the Magic as they have a shot to at least challenge Cleveland for the Eastern Conference. Boston is heading in the wrong direction and the Sixers could give them some trouble in the first round.

  2. raymond says:

    Lakers are getting tested big time in this series against the Rockets so in the next series against denver won’t be no problem denver has no defense and always let their opponents score 100 pts per game
    So here are my Predictions:
    1. Lakers over Rockets
    2. Celtics over Magic

    WCF
    1. Lakers over Nuggets in 6

    ECF
    1. Cavs over Celtics in 7

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