No Coast Bias writers Alex Schubauer and Sam Pouncey want to keep you updated each night of the NBA Playoffs. To do that, they will be sharing their thoughts with you via an email exchange journal. We welcome any feedback along the way in the comments section and hope you enjoy. You can find the links to the first two journal entries here and here. Today’s entry features a friendly wagers and questions about which teams may or may not be ready to work there way back from a series deficit.
Sam: Who do you have tonight?
Alex: Give me the Hornets bouncing back for a win, the Cavs in another close one, and the same thing for the Clippers. You?
Sam: I wish I could agree on Charlotte, but my head is telling me no. I think the Cavs win, but I actually think Portland steals one in L.A. tonight. Baby dame dolla is gonna be droppin’ dimes droppin’ dimes.
Alex: True, but he’s not going to stop CP3 from doing the same to him. Maybe back in Portland they can ride out that energy to a win but I think they’re just too outmatched at nearly every position to win in L.A.
Sam: Maybe so. Blake played great in Game 1, but all evidence at the end of the season suggested he wasn’t full healthy so I’ll be curious to see what he looks like tonight.
Alex: He doesn’t have his whole game yet, but he was still capable of this in Game 1:
— NBA TV (@NBATV) April 18, 2016
Luckily he has Chris and DeAndre to help ease him back into full power.
Sam: That’s true and I am a little concerned that the Plumlee/Davis combo down low is overmatched, but I think at this point in their respective careers Lillard is more likely to win me a game singlehandedly than Chris Paul and I’m banking on that being true at some point in time.
Alex: Paul has a certain craft that I’m not sure will ever go away, but yes it’s a lot different than Dame’s explosive nature so the clash of styles is going to be interesting no matter what.
Sam: Definitely so and one of the more interesting first round matchups. I think we need a friendly wager here. You have LAC. I have Portland. Winner picks any picture from the loser’s Facebook/Twitter to be tomorrow’s feature image.
Alex: Damn, that’s a good one. A few of mine would just scare people away but I accept. I believe in my pick. I’ve never neede to be right more than now.
Sam: Haha excellent this should be the first of many as the playoffs press on.
Sam: Well both of my teams [Hornets and Pistons] might get swept out of the playoffs.
Alex: Pretty disappointing from both of them tonight. The Heat got, well, hot, but Charlotte didn’t help themselves much there. And Detroit made a bunch of silly mistakes that are impossible to come back from.
Sam: I was worried that Detroit shot better than they are in Game 1 and still couldn’t win. Charlotte might just not be ready yet but admittedly I haven’t watch the game yet.
Alex: The Heat shot tonight how the Pistons did in game one. If you lose doing that, you’re just not good enough. That’s kinda what we expected from Detroit, though. They’re young but they’re fighting hard.
Sam: Agreed. The Pistons are a year away but they have a solid core together and the playoff experience is good for them. Have you picked out my picture yet? Looks like LAC is better tonight.
Alex: The Clippers have been burned enough times in the second half of a playoff game so I’m not going to give myself that bad karma so early. It does feel like the Blazers won’t be able to cut into the lead at some point, though.
Sam: Didn’t fall for my reverse jinx trap…that’s mildly disappointing. I’m gonna have a rough first round because we might end up going all chalk.
Alex: There are enough games in [an] NBA series that the best team tends to win out. There’s always one wacko series, the trick is finding which one. The Clippers could very well still be one, and I still wouldn’t discount the Hornets if the Heat cool off a bit.
Sam: That’s a good point. The best team wins probably 80% of the time in a playoff series. I’m just afraid that Charlotte is still young and morale might be low. Portland I’m less afraid of because Stotts and Lillard are on their third playoff now.
Alex: They’re a lot younger now than the last two though. It’s a lack of experience that’s showing when the Clips corral Lillard and McCollum, which is pretty much constantly so far.
Sam: True. Most people (myself included) didn’t even think they’d make the playoffs. My larger point was that because they have a coach and a point guard/star who have playoff experience they are in a better position than Charlotte who has neither.
Alex: Agreed, and better off in the long term as well. You see the Hornets game yet?
Sam: Not yet…I’m gonna start it soon. For the record, the instant I get more disposable income I’m buying a Stanley Johnson jersey. He was already my guy but tonight he made me go six to midnight.
Alex: Any ball player talking shit has my whole heart but one doing it way above their status is an absolute hero. More please!
Alex: Whatever it was, LeBron is gonna try picking Stanley up and actually dunking him in Game 3, if not something worse. I’m so excited.
Sam: I hope Stanley pins him to the backboard. If that happens I will just go ahead and die because I will have seen and done everything I wanted to do and see in life. Also, as the proud owner of Lance Stephenson and Josh Smith jerseys, I have a soft spot for irrational confidence guys.
Alex: I was just going to bring up Lance! He went at LeBron off the bench then had the best season of his life the next year. Maybe that’s what Stanley is really going for here and antagonizing Bron is the ticket to success.
Sam: I mean I think we can definitely see causation there. I think Stanley can be really good. I was hoping either Detroit or Charlotte would get him. I was so disappointed that Charlotte passed on Winslow that would have been back-to-back win-win picks for me. I love Mudiay too.
Alex: Kaminsky is solid but Winslow seemed so obvious even at the time. There are a bunch of rookies stepping up to help playoff teams this season, I’m impressed.
Sam: The NBA draft, even more than the NFL draft, cycles back and forth between “good” and “bad” drafts where you’ll go from 15 or so guys that are starting caliber at 19-22 years old and the the next year it might only be two. Anyway we tumbled out into [the] NBA draft weeds do we wanna call it here?
Alex: There are more rookies playing tonight that prove your point so yes, we’re ready to start focusing on those games now.