This year the NBA Eastern Conference Playoffs have been nothing short of apathy. The Milwaukee Bucks beat the Detroit Pistons tonight for the fourth time in a row, with each game’s dub anywhere from a sixteen to a thirty-five point margin. So, it’s safe to say none of those games came close.
Yesterday, the Boston Celtics sealed off a sweep against the Indiana Pacers as well. Now the only two match ups in this round of the Eastern Conference Playoffs are the Raptors vs. Magic series and the 76ers vs. the Nets series.
This alone may seem pretty predictable, but just wait it gets even more so. The Bucks went into the playoffs with a 60-22 record, making them the Eastern Conference’s highest-ranked team. Not only that, but the Celtics also went into the series ranked 4th in the Eastern Conference with a record of 49-33.
The other two series in the E.C.F. are the Philadelphia 76ers vs. the Brooklyn Nets and the Raptors vs. Magic series. The Sixers came into the playoffs ranked third in the Eastern Conference — they are currently beating the Nets in the series and are up three games to one. The Toronto Raptors came into the series as the second seed… and guess who is currently winning that series right now?
The Raptors. Pretty easy to guess right?
Not only that, but if you noticed, all of the top four teams that came into the 2019 NBA Playoffs have either won or are currently beating their opponent in the first round. How predictable!
The National Basketball Association should really take this into consideration because this can cause a “lag” in enthusiasm on behalf of the fans, which could result in less money for the league. It all comes down to the entertainment factor of basketball. Some people might agree with this statement but wonder: What is the solution to this dilemma?
I have one answer — split up the Golden State Warriors.
If you think about how O.P.’d (Over Powered) the Warriors have been over the past four seasons by winning 3/4 NBA titles (the year they didn’t win they set the league’s best regular season record with a whopping 73 wins and 9 losses during the 2015-2016 season), it can be frustrating. At least it’s frustrating to the fans of 29 teams. Their secret recipe: “Strength in Numbers.”
Klay Thompson, one of the Warriors’ shooting guards, was asked by a reporter after a fantastic game why Steph Curry didn’t perform so well in their win. Summarizing Klay’s response, he said that they do not need all of their stars to play great every night because there are so many great players on the team. Many basketball analytics argue that Steph Curry and Klay Thompson are two of the NBA’s most efficient three point shooters. This can be demonstrated game after game for the dubs in the playoffs. If Steph isn’t on, Klay is and vice-versa… And then there’s Kevin Durant.
Kevin Durant is one of the most decorated athletes in the NBA. He has won two NBA Finals, a Kia NBA League MVP award, and is currently the back-to-back Finals MVP. He is 6’11” and can drive to the lane and slam it, or he can shoot daggers from way beyond the 3 point arc. In other words, he’s the real deal.
As our very own DeMonte Parker mentioned in The Christian and DeMonte Show, both Klay Thompson and KD are going to become free agents this summer. We can see that in the way that the Warriors are playing currently that they are beginning to become bored too. This might mean that their free agents may leave the Warriors and join another team…in the Eastern Conference!
This would solve the problem. There would be significantly less boredom in the league if stars were spread out a little better. If I was Klay, KD, or any other NBA superstar that was going to become a free agent I would seriously consider the Eastern Conference. They would make more money and possibly a greater name for themselves. Especially if the top seed is carried by a single player — Giannis Antetokounmpo on the Bucks.