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NBA Playoffs 2013: Potential First Round Upsets

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 NBA Playoffs 2013: Potential First Round Upsets
Unread 2 years agoclass of '12 - away - #1
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MischiefTooReal 99 heat pts99 space
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As the 2012-13 NBA regular season comes to a close, the postseason matchups are falling into place. From 2012 rematches to clashes between division foes, we're preparing to see heated clashes between the league's elite.

The question is, who could be on upset alert?

In a perfect world, the seeds would all advance in the manner in which their hype suggests they should. As we've come to learn, however, seeding is only as valuable as a team's ability to execute when the game is on the line.

In a postseason series, close outings are common—in those instances, the term "better" is not always applicable.

In 2013, there is the potential for upsets to transpire during the first round of the playoffs. Not only could current favorites stumble, but they could fall before their postseason run even begins.

So who is on upset alert? Let's find out.
No. 2 New York Knicks vs. No. 7 Boston Celtics
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For those who believe that the New York Knicks are illegitimate NBA championship contenders, stop yourself short. The Knicks are an elite three-point shooting team that has rediscovered their elite defense since the signing of Kenyon Martin.

With that being said, the Knicks drew the worst first-round draw possible when they landed a seven-game series against the Boston Celtics.

The Knicks and Celtics are longtime rivals who always seem to bring the best out of one another. While New York won three of four during the regular season, the postseason is an entirely different animal.

For what it's worth, the Celtics reached the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals while the Knicks haven't made it out of the first round since 2000.

The Celtics may be without Rajon Rondo, but they are still led by former NBA champions Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Jason Terry. With Jeff Green's rise to stardom and the pairing of Avery Bradley and Courtney Lee playing elite defense, the Celtics have the depth and star power to pull off the upset.

Even if the Knicks are rationally favored, don't sleep on Boston.

No. 3 Denver Nuggets vs. No. 6 Golden State Warriors
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Most teams are fortunate enough to get healthy at the perfect time of the season. In the case of the Denver Nuggets, they've seen Danilo Gallinari go down with a torn ACL and Kenneth Faried suffer a sprained ankle during the final month of the season.

That's bad news considering the Nuggets are in line to play another elite offensive team in the Golden State Warriors.

Gallinari's ability to shoot the three-ball will be missed, although it shouldn't be too devastating for the Nuggets. They can compensate for his absence by plugging in spot shooters who are capable in spot-up situations.

Against a Warriors team that's eighth in three-point field goals and first in three-point field goal percentage, however, that may not be enough.

The true absence to be missed, however, is Faried's. Not only is Faried an elite rebounder, but he's preparing to go up against David Lee in this series.

For those unfamiliar, Lee is fourth in rebounding and leads the league with 55 double-doubles.

If Faried is not at 100 percent, Lee will exploit that advantage on both ends of the floor. This will enable the Warriors to create second-chance scoring opportunities and capitalize with the three-ball.

That's more than enough for the Warriors to take down a defensively-inept Nuggets team in four out of seven games.

imageNo. 1 Oklahoma City Thunder vs. No. 8 Los Angeles Lakersimage
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Before we get into the blind hatred of the Los Angeles Lakers, it's important that we remember who we're talking about. Even without Kobe Bryant, the Lakers are an elite team that thrive in the areas the Oklahoma City Thunder have trouble.

For what it's worth, I'm pretty sure a core of Dwight Howard, Pau Gasol and Steve Nash is elite for any other franchise.

Assuming Howard and Gasol work it inside, they can slow it down and create easy baskets for their shooters. With Steve Blake catching fire, Nash one of the all-time great shooters and Jodie Meeks finding his stroke, L.A. could keep the pace.

Don't put your money on it, but this is possible.

Howard led the Orlando Magic to the 2009 NBA Finals with a significantly weaker supporting cast than he currently possesses. As long as Nash is able to get healthy, there's no reason he can't do the same in 2013.

Kobe will be missed, but this is not an impossibility—no matter how badly we want to tell ourselves it is.
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Props given to MischiefTooReal hot topic  (04-17-2013)

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Unread 2 years agoclass of '10 - on now - #2
SmoothTay 22 heat pts22 space
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Bookmarked
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '10 - away - #3
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Warriors over Nuggets isn't even an upset. If they're missing Faried than I think we sweep.
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '09 - on now - #4
thegoldenhero 3 heat pts space
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Rockets have a bigger chance at upsetting Spurs the Lakers have against OKC...I still think both OKC and Spurs make it out of the first round.

and no way Warriors sweep anybody they aren't that good.
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '04 - away - #5
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Knicks better not lose to Celtics, that better not happen

Lakers without Kobe ain't beating Spurs, we can push it to 6-7 but if Kobe was there

but i'm intrigued by that Nugs/GSW series
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '08 - away - #6
Dangerously 215 heat pts215 space
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Nets Up, Knicks Lost.
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The Nets making it to the second round would be an upset according to some of these BX retards
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '07 - away - #7
MythMade 6 heat pts space
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Thee Yung Star said:
Warriors over Nuggets isn't even an upset. If they're missing Faried than I think we sweep.
Plus, they have the greatest human since Jesus in Steph Curry.
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '10 - away - #8
SoulOnIce 66 heat pts66 space
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Nuggets will be tough despite injuries IMO.
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '10 - away - #9
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MythMade said:
Plus, they have the greatest human since Jesus in Steph Curry.
Jesus only shot 43% from 3.

Steph shoots 45.


Steph >
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '07 - on now - #10
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So the Lakers already locked up the playoff spot???
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '12 - away - #11
MischiefTooReal 99 heat pts99 space
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SmoothTay said:
Bookmarked


Don't catch feelings b. It's says POTENTIAL UPSET not GUARANTEED UPSET.

It's cool though bump away.
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '12 - away - #12
OC123 138 heat pts138 space
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Thee Yung Star said:
Jesus only shot 43% from 3.

Steph shoots 45.


Steph >
jesus shuttlesworth is #4 in the league in plus/minus in crunch time, steph curry is 15th


jesus>

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Unread 2 years agoclass of '07 - away - #13
MythMade 6 heat pts space
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OC123 said:
jesus shuttlesworth is #4 in the league in plus/minus in crunch time, steph curry is 15th


jesus>

I was referring to Jesus CHRIST.
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '06 - on now - #14
KingK 23 heat pts23 space
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SoulOnIce said:
Nuggets will be tough despite injuries IMO.
Yep. I could very well see that series going 7 games. I think we can take em tho
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '04 - away - #15
U.B.HiRM 31 heat pts31 space
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lakers got a good shot to beat sas...Dwight has to dominate and everyone follow suit
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '12 - away - #16
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take the fall


lose
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '08 - away - #17
Nut-In-Honeys 9 heat pts space
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Lakers losing Kobe and the Spurs gaining Tmac make me think that the Spurs would get upset if they meet up with the Lakers
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '05 - away - #18
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Thee Yung Star said:
Warriors over Nuggets isn't even an upset. If they're missing Faried than I think we sweep.
Even without Faried they wouldn't sweep.
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '10 - away - #19
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OC123 said:
jesus shuttlesworth is #4 in the league in plus/minus in crunch time, steph curry is 15th


jesus>

Jesus Shuttlesworth

We don't compare Curry to mere mortals you fool
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '05 - away - #20
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Hold up.. is there even a chance the Lakers play OKC? I think that can only be the case if both the Lakers and Jazz lose their last game. If the Lakers beat Houston, the Rockets will be the 8th seed, same record but Houston has a worse divisional record. Can't see both the Lakers and the Jazz losing tonight.

Correct me if I'm wrong though.
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