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Sunday, April 25, 2010

NBA Playoffs: Where Impossible Things Do Happen

The 1st Round of the NBA Playoffs are turning out  to be unpredictable.

So far, many unexpected things have happened.

The Spurs with the playoff-reliable trio of Ginobili, Duncan and Parker are leading the series 2-1 agains the Mavs who on paper appear to be the complete championship-caliber team with Nowitzki, Butler, Marion, Kidd, Terry, Barea and Haywood.

The Blazers tied their series 2-2 even with Brandon Roy unable to play the first 3 games of the series because of injury. Stoudemire played well offensively in Game 4 but his rebounding all series has been poor considering he is a power forward.

The injury-plagued Jazz is putting up a fight against the Nuggets.

The Cavs and Hawks are unable to sweep their respective opponents , the Bulls and Bucks minus Bogut.

Only the Celtics are lucky to have their series at 3-0 with Pierce's buzzer-beating shot in Game 3.

But none of the above outcomes is more surprising  than the Lakers-Thunder series with the record already tied at 2-2.

Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and company are giving the Lakers the fight of their lives.

Who would have thought that the playoff-inexperienced Thunder would test the mighty Lakers.

In Game 4, the Thunder won convincingly.

Ron Artest is supposed to contain Durant. He appeared to do so in Game 1. But now Durant is having his way as exemplified by one sequence in the 1st half when Durant drove all the way to the basket amidst Lakers' defenders ending the drive with an authoritative dunk. And it was not just the Durant show.

The whole Thunder team did their share on both ends of the court being more aggressive than their Laker counterparts nullifying the size advantage of the Lakers.

Now the Thunder players who have nothing to lose have gained confidence as well as experience. No matter what happens in the rest of the series, the Thunder showed already that they can place with the best.

And the Lakers wounded and scarred, do not appear anymore to be invincible.

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