NBA Playoffs 2014 Bracket, Schedule, and Preview: Wizards Face Pacers in Second Round; Clippers Take on Thunder
And then there were eight. After an exciting first round, the second round NBA playoff schedule is set and it promises to be must watch television for basketball fans.
Our first contest is between the Indiana Pacers and the Washington Wizards.
The Pacers are the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference and have home-court advantage throughout, but they aren't playing like it. Head coach Frank Vogel has been significantly limiting Roy Hibbert's playing time, and it's paying off. If the Pacers are going to advance far in the playoffs, Hibbert is going to have to step it up. David West saved the Pacers' season against the Atlanta Hawks back in Game 6 when he took over the fourth quarter and the Pacers need that momentum to continue. The Pacers also need Paul George to become the scoring threat he is capable of being.
The Wizards easily eliminated the Chicago Bulls in five games in the first round. Point guard John Wall is starting to live up to that first overall draft selection. Trevor Ariza has been playing great defense for the Wizards as well. The Wizards are going to have to win on the road in Indiana if they're going to win this series. Pacers won the regular season series 2-1. Game one begins Monday, May 5, at 7 p.m. EDT on TNT.
The next competition is between the Los Angeles Clippers and the Oklahoma City Thunder.
This series promises to have plenty of offense. The Thunder barely escaped elimination by the Memphis Grizzlies in the first round in a grueling seven game series. Kevin Durant turned into "Mr. Reliable" in Games 6 and 7. Point guard Russell Westbrook has been on fire as well the last two games, recording a triple double in Game 7. Scott Brooks needs to make sure he remains the point guard and doesn't shoot too often. Thunder will have home court advantage in this series.
The Los Angeles Clippers also escaped elimination in a seven-game series. Chris Paul and Blake Griffin guided the Clippers to a series win over the Golden State Warriors. The Thunder will be favored, but the Clippers did manage to split the regular season series with the Thunder 2-2 in four games. DeAndre Jordan is going to have to box out Durant and force him to take difficult outside shots. The Clippers also have a clear advantage at coaching with Doc Rivers. Rivers is a champion coach who has a proven track record. Game 1 begins Monday, May 5, at 9:30 p.m. EDT on TNT.
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