I'm rooting for Boston, but am prepared for disappointment.
Surely not at the hands of Philly, right? They might make a show of it, but I can't see them stopping the C's.
Sorry for your Spurs, but I think the entire basketball world would love to see a Miami-OKC Finals because who doesn't think Lebron and the Durantula are the most exciting players in the leaue right now. Of course, this is assuming Kobe can't throw the Lakers on his back and carry them to one more Finals.
As far as the Heat getting past the Pacers, I think Bosh will be back soon enough that the Heat should survive that series in 5 or 6 games. The Celtics and the 76ers could go the distance, though. I see the Spurs and the Thunder both winning their series in 5 games. The Clippers are hurting and the Lakers are old at the wrong positions. It's easy for an older big man (like Duncan) to still be a presence. But when it's your star shooting guard (like Kobe) who's been being beat up for years, it's a lot harder on the team.
Yeah, everyone hates it when the Spurs make the Finals. They always get the lowest ratings. Small market team with a heavy emphasis on team play and defense doesn't get everyone riled up...big shocker there. Ironically though, even though everyone thinks of them as being this old, plodding defensive team, they were actually one of the younger teams by average age (until they added S-Jax and Diaw during free agency). They've got a lot of great young players. They've also morphed into one of the highest scoring teams in the league, which nobody seems to have noticed. They're a lot like the run & gun Suns of a few years ago, now. Transition buckets, lots of passing and pick & roll play. Very fun to watch, but I doubt anyone cares to give 'em a second look. Ah well.
I actually don't think Durant is even the most exciting player on his team, myself (it's Westbrook), though it doesn't change your point. I think LAL - MIA would still garner the highest ratings, but OKC - MIA is a close second, followed by LAL - BOS, probably. And here I am, rooting for SAS - PHI/IND.
I think the Lakers hinge on whether or not Bynum and Gasol get going (doubly so on the defensive end). If they try to get through by going all-in with Kobe, they'll lose. They're a better team when they run through the post, and it'll help 'em slow the game down...if they do otherwise, they'll just get outrun by Durant/Westbrook. Tough sell, though...OKC seems like they're built specifically to deal with that...Ibaka, Perkins & Collison can bang w/ LA's bigs well enough, and OKC can just draw Bynum out with pick & rolls. Edited, May 16th 2012 11:53am by Eske