Lessons from a weekend of NBA playoffs
Blazers look like contenders
BY DAVID THORPE
One weekend into the playoffs:
The Blazers, Nets, and Sixers should be smiling.
Right now, Portland’s offense is such a powerful force that they look like a title team.
The Mavericks have a certain Luka swagger—and a game in hand.
LeBron James does not look to be 100 percent recovered from his ankle injury, and has now banged up his shoulder—and lost a game to a very good team.
The Clippers have yet to prove they know how to be elite.
The Jazz don’t know when they’ll next be able to rely on Donovan Mitchell to play at an All-Star level.
After hurting his shoulder, Chris Paul struggled to dribble the ball.
The Bucks are the same team, with the same flaws, as they have been the last two postseasons. That won’t win them a title. It’s a two-team race in the East.
Teams that used the secret sauce of winning one quarter by ten or more, while not losing a quarter similarly, are 7-0.
A tour of the playoffs opening weekend:
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