By Tessa Jackson
First of all, I would like to apologize for only caring about basketball, but it is the playoffs and I can’t help it. We are in the conference semifinals right now and things are getting interesting.
In the West, we have Ja Morant and the Memphis Grizzlies vs Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors. This series has gotten pretty dirty. Warriors’ shooting guard, Gary Payton II left the second game with a broken elbow on a dirty play by Grizzlies’ small forward, Dillon Brooks, who got ejected. Then one of the Warriors’ main defenders, Draymond Green, ended up with an eye laceration and then flipped off the Memphis crowd on his way to the locker room. When you are watching it feels like maybe the referees want Memphis to win. In the first game Green got ejected for something completely ridiculous, and then in the second game a last-minute foul and a questionable traveling call on Klay Thompson sealed the win for the Grizzlies, 106-101. But also, Ja Morant is pretty freaking good. The series is now tied, 1-1.
The other series we have in the West is the No. 4 Dallas Mavericks vs the No. 1 Phoenix Suns. This series hasn’t been quite as exciting, with the Suns winning Game 1, 121-114, after leading by as many as 21 points at one time. But in basketball you never can tell how things are going to go, and while I think the Suns will win this series handily, I think the Mavericks will win one game.
For the East Semifinals, the big news is the injury of the No. 4 Philadelphia 76ers’ star player, Joel Embiid, in the last game of round one. Embiid was out for Game 1 of the series with the No. 1 Miami Heat with an orbital fracture and a concussion, and will be out for at least one more game. He must have very weak facial bones because he suffered an orbital fracture on the other side of his face four years ago. It also calls into question why he was still in the game when they were up by almost 30 points. Anyway, They are saying he might come back for as early as Game 3 of their current series. Game 1 didn’t go so well without Embiid, the Heat won the game 106-92.
The last series we have shows you how you never know what’s going to happen in any given game. Last year’s champions, the No. 3 Milwaukee Bucks are taking on the No. 2 Boston Celtics. In Game 1, the Bucks won 101-89, and then in Game 2, the Celtics turned around and won 109-86. The spread for Game 3, which takes place in Milwaukee, is Bucks -3 and the bookies are predicting the series will go to seven games. I’m hoping we get some closer games, rather than all those blowouts.
If I had my choice, in the Finals we would see the Boston Celtics and the Phoenix Suns. Mainly because I am a big fan of Celtics’ Jason Tatum, and the Suns’ Devin Booker. We shall find out soon enough!