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NBA Playoff Predictions: West

Ty Lawson

First Round

1 Oklahoma City vs. 8 Houston
James Harden returns to Oklahoma City with a dangerous Houston team behind him. Even if he has a great series and gets some help from guys like Jeremy Lin and Chandler Parsons it will be tough to pull the upset against a deep Thunder squad.
Oklahoma City in five

2 San Antonio vs. 7 Los Angeles Lakers
Two teams who struggle with transition square off in this one. We always say San Antonio's championship window is closed until they go out and get one of the highest seeds out West. The war in the post should be evident as the Lakers finally are getting the Dwight that they wanted when they traded for him this offseason. It will be interesting to see if Howard and Pau Gasol can continue their hot play against the experienced Tim Duncan. If they do, who knows LA could go on a little run. But, the Spurs shouldn't let that happen.
San Antonio in seven

3 Denver vs. 6 Golden State 
The Denver Nuggets are ready to show that they can hang with the big boys in these playoffs. They get the surprising Golden State Warriors who can shoot the lights out when Stephon Curry and Klay Thompson are on their game. They need to have an amazing shooting series in order to keep Golden State in games against a team that run all over them if they don't play smart. This one could be a close series, or it could be all Denver.
Denver in five

4 Los Angeles Clippers vs. 5 Memphis Grizzlies
The high-flying Clippers look forward to a deep playoff run but first they have to get through a scary Memphis team. It will be tough for LA to score against a Memphis team that plays fantastic defense and is tough all around. I'm very worried about the weak free throw shooting Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan that will hurt them in close games.
Memphis in six


1 Oklahoma City vs. 5 Memphis
This one could be a true battle. Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol will wage war against Kevin Durant and Serge Ibaka. Both Randolph and Durant can stretch the floor and can also do damage in the post. The team that gets bigger contributions from the rest of their team can win the series. My money is on Oklahoma City who has Westbrook, Kevin Martin and Kendrick Perkins to rely on.
Oklahoma City in seven

2 San Antonio vs. 3 Denver
The Spurs could have real issues against the Nuggets' transition defense led by Javale McGee, Kenneth Faried and Ty Lawson. The Nuggets are fantastic at home meaning they should likely win the games there. The Spurs play well but not fast enough to shut down Denver.
Denver in six

Conference Finals

1 Oklahoma City vs. 3 Denver
Speed and talented youth collide in this one with a chance in the Finals on the line. Denver is without Danilo Gallinari who could have been the perfect defender against Durant because both are very mobile. Westbrook and Lawson square off with Westbrook going off. Though Faried's powers done low and great shooting ends the Thunder's season earlier than expected.
Denver in seven

 Denver wins Western conference 

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