Race for NBA playoffs heats up

Drake Rowland, Staff Writer

Every April the NBA starts to become intense, with the playoff race starting to get down to the wire. Most fans of the NBA think that NBA stars don’t really try until the playoffs start. With only 66 games being played in a shortened NBA season, the playoffs are coming faster than ever. Many basketball fans tune into the playoffs because it becomes really intense. Players are obviously going to try hard to win a ring.

                The playoff race is very tight. In the West, the Oklahoma City Thunder have already clinched their spot in the playoffs and are two games ahead of San Antonio. The top eight teams in each conference make the playoffs.  The top eight in the West are the Oklahoma City Thunder, San Antonio Spurs, LA Lakers, LA Clippers, Memphis Grizzlies, Dallas Mavericks, Denver Nuggets, and Houston Rockets. All are separated by 11½ games. In the West, Phoenix and Utah are still in the race, only a game and a half back from eighth. Senior Julius Williams said, “You can never sleep on veterans. The Spurs might be old but they are still winning games.”

                In the other conference, the Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat have already punched their ticket to the NBA playoffs.  The East is way closer than the West with teams separated in seeds by only one or even half games. The East standings are Chicago Bulls, Miami Heat, Indiana Pacers, Boston Celtics, Orlando Magic, Atlanta Hawks, Philadelphia 76ers, and the New York Knicks. There will probably be way more shifting around in the seeds since the teams are so close. The only other team still in the race is the Milwaukee Bucks, only 2 and ½ games back. Junior Mark Salem said, “My Bulls better win it all this year; I think it will depend on Derrick Rose’s health.”

                Regardless of seeding, the NBA playoffs should be another thriller. Will Derrick Rose recover from injure and win a title? Will the “dream team” finally win it all? Or will Chris Paul and lob city win it all? It will be a great month of intense, well played basketball. Fans will be really excited to watch these games. The playoffs start on April 28th.