Bill Neal: Around the NBA…Be careful what you wish for!!

THE BROOKLYN NETS’ KEVIN DURANT is getting heat for his team being swept by the Boston Celtics in the first round of the NBA Playoffs.

by Bill Neal, For New Pittsburgh Courier

:10—Without question, a lineup including Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and James Harden has you in line for NBA championship tickets. At least that’s what you thought two months ago. But that ship has sailed… Those horses are out the barn… That dog won’t hunt … Well, you get it now. Harden is gone, KD is tired and Kyrie is a bit delusional again, be careful what you wish for! The Boston Celtics brought out the brooms and swept the Nets right out of the playoffs….Crazy!

:09—That being the nightmare on the east coast, there would be one of biblical proportion that went way south on the west coast.  Your G.O.A.T., not mine, LeBron James, is in a combo of age and injury, Anthony Davis is often hurt but mostly satisfied he has his ring so the fight is gone and Russell Westbrook, in spite of all his good will, still can’t find the way to championship gold. Again, be careful what you wish for!

:08—Unless of course you’re Joel Embiid playing for the 76ers and wishing that you could get rid of Ben Simmons and gain the talents of James Harden. Wish granted… But you still come up short in the East Conference championship. It should go like this:   Miami over Atlanta, Philly over Toronto, and Milwaukee over Chicago. We’ll catch up next week. All signs point to Milwaukee, once again.

:07—For the record, and for those who think power teams are automatic, look at the Nets and Lakers… you must have team unity.  And, most importantly, a smart and no-nonsense coach.

:06—Going out west where it’s the best, you have Phoenix vs. New Orleans, Dallas vs. Utah, Golden State vs. Denver and Memphis vs. Minnesota. It looks like Golden State is back and should come out of the west. And I mean they’re really back!

:05—The shining stars out of the east. Once again Giannis Antetokounmpo should be your MVP followed by Joel Embiid, Trae Young – Atlanta, James Harden – Philly, Jimmy Butler – Miami, Jayson Tatum – Boston, Kevin Durant – Brooklyn, and Demar Derozan – Chicago.

:04—The stars shine a bit brighter out west. Devin Booker – Phoenix, Luka Doncic – Dallas, the human highlight film Ja Morant – Memphis, Stephen Curry – Golden State, Chris Paul – Phoenix and Nikola Jokic – Denver.

:03—From a distance… And Lord knows I’ve been wrong before. But your championship run should be a good one. Looks like Philly and Milwaukee will play for east representation and it looks like a humdinger coming our way with Phoenix and Golden State getting it on.

:02—If I’m anywhere near right we should see Golden State and Milwaukee lock horns for a best-of-seven barn-burner.  To go against Curry & Klay Thompson is not a smart bet. I got the Warriors winning it all again!

:01—But I also had the Steelers in the Super Bowl last year so let that be your guide.





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