(1) Golden State vs. (8) Houston
This series is the most likely to be over in just 4 games. Even without the league MVP and leading scorer, the Warriors still put up 115 points in game 2, and Houston has nowhere near enough defensive discipline to contain the best team in NBA history (record-wise).
(2) San Antonio vs. (7) Memphis
Just like the Warriors-Rockets series, The Memphis Grizzlies will be beyond lucky to get this series past being a sweep. In any other season, the Spurs would be the favorite to win the title.
(3) Oklahoma City vs. (6) Dallas
OKC may have slipped up and blown it in game 2, but the Thunder still possess 2 of the top 5 players in the league, and I believe they win this series in 6 games.
(4) Los Angeles vs. (5) Portland
The Clippers may not stack up well against the top teams in the West, but that isn’t a problem in this round. Portland will be hopeful to take this to 5 games with minimal talent outside the point guard position.
Conference Finals Prediction: Golden State beats San Antonio in 7 games.
(1) Cleveland vs. (8) Detroit
Cleveland struggles against the Pistons, but not enough to blow this series. Cleveland wins in 5 games, giving them a nice break before round 2.
(2) Toronto vs. (7) Indiana
Even with Toronto having their best season ever, Paul George may be enough of a superstar to make this the biggest upset of the playoffs. However, I think the Raptors’ overall talent gets them a 7 game series win.
(3) Miami vs. (6) Charlotte
Miami seems to actually be a real threat to the Cavs in the east, and should be able to take down Charlotte in 5 games, possibly even sweeping them. D-Wade and Hassan Whiteside look too strong for the Hornets.
(4) Atlanta vs. (5) Boston
Atlanta looked really strong in the first 2 games, but I think the Celtics use their strong home-court advantage and steal a few games this series, ultimately losing in 6 games.
Conference Finals Prediction: Cleveland beats Miami in 6 games.