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Fantasy Basketball Guy

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June 04, 2008

2008 NBA Finals Predictions – Lakers vs Celtics

Am I the only one that thinks too much is being made of the hype of the two teams in this year’s finals being a repeat of the common matchup from the 80s?

None of the players on the Boston Celtics are the same as they were back in the 80s. None of the players on the Los Angeles Lakers are the same as they were back in the 80s, either. In fact, the stars of the respective teams aren’t anything like the stars of the teams back then. The stars aren’t even playing at the same positions.

The coaches aren’t the same.

The buildings aren’t the same.

The uniforms aren’t even the same.

Ok. I’m done with my tangent. Let’s get to the prediction.

Los Angeles Lakers

The Lakers beat some pretty good teams to get here. Denver wasn’t really good, but nobody can deny that the Utah Jazz and the San Antonio Spurs were both worthy adversaries, and neither of them looked very great against the Lakers.

Kobe Bryant is a spectacular player, and the Lakers only go as far as Kobe can take them. Kobe’s teammates have been doing their part, but they can all be shut down (and some have been in various series) without much success in actually slowing the Lakers as a whole.

Boston Celtics

The Boston Celtics go as far as the tandem of Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce can take them. (Ray Allen is more of a good jump shooter at this point.) They pride themselves on playing good defense (but played much better defense in the regular season than they did in the playoffs thus far.

The Boston Celtics faced a very potent offensive force in LeBron James, and beat the Cavaliers with less difficulty than they had against the lowly Atlanta Hawks.

The Detroit Pistons, who were at least as good as the Cavaliers but with a more balanced approach. They also couldn’t handle the Celtics.

The Boston Celtics also have home court advantage, but with a 2-3-2 Finals format, it doesn’t provide quite the advantage that the 2-2-1-1-1 format would have provided them.

Prediction

It’s a tough call, but I think I’m going to pick the Boston Celtics in 7. When the series is on the line, the Boston Celtics have shown that they can hang tough. They have beaten good teams and they have beaten excellent individual talent.

I think they can beat LA.

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