The first round has been remarkable so far for its lack of competition, as there were a ton of blowout victories and utter domination from primarily the higher seeds. There are three games tonight and hopefully this trend will discontinue and we get to see some more interesting basketball. The first game will probably be the most interesting of the bunch, unless Steph Curry sits out against the Rockets, which is highly possible.
The Pacers are trying to take a commanding lead over the higher seeded Raptors. Lowry and DeRozan had awful games in the first meeting and Paul George was clearly the best player on the floor. It's unclear what the Raptors can do to beat the Pacers if George is going to be this good, as he shut down DeRozan while no one on the Raptors was able to do anything to stop him. It's going to take remarkable performances from Lowry and he needs to step up to his regular season form to keep the Raptors from falling further behind in the series. If the Pacers win, this series is as good as over as the next two games will be in Indiana.
I feel bad watching this series, as the Mavericks are just not going to be able to hang with the Thunder. There isn't a lot of comedy value in watching the Mavs lose either, especially compared to watching the Rockets flail about with J-Smoove and MVP Beasley. It's just kind of sad to watch Dirk potentially go out like this, as the aging Mavericks cast is not good enough to really compete at the top tier level amongst the West. The Thunder destroyed the Mavericks in Game 1, and while the remaining games may be more competitive, the resolution seems already determined.
(1) Golden State Warriors hosting (8) Houston Rockets
How close this game will be is dependent upon whether or not Curry plays. The well-known secret about the Warriors is how vulnerable they are without Curry. They might still be a playoff caliber team, but not the world-beaters that this team is with him. If Curry sits, the Rockets could steal a game, but that wouldn't be the end of the world. The Warriors dismantled the Rockets in the previous match-up and can almost just hand over the game to make sure that they are healthy for the rest of their post-season run. But if Curry plays, expect another easy Warriors victory.
Enjoy the games