December 5, 2021 | 8:41 am
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The Baseline: NBA semi-finals preview

The first round of the NBA playoffs has concluded and we dig in and give you our assessment on who advances to the Eastern and Western conference semifinals and much more on this week’s show:

  • Grizzlies vs Warriors: Can the newly crowned MVP Stephen Curry continue his assault as the Warriors look to push to the conference finals? Will the combination of Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol stand tall enough in the absence of Mike Conley for Memphis to do more than just challenge Golden State?
  • Wizards vs Hawks: John Wall and Bradley Beal have turned up their playoff games and to have ‘DC rising.’ Can the suddenly vulnerable Hawks show the promise from earlier in the season or will Jeff Teague, Al Horford and Paul Millsap find themselves missing before the conference finals.?
  • Cavs vs Bulls: No Kevin Love for the rest of the playoffs and J.R. Smith is out the first two games…can LeBron James and Kyrie Irving make up for the loss of 40% of the starting lineup to push the veteran Chicago team? Derrick Rose, Jimmy Butler and Pau Gasol have been great but can their health sustain them past what many are deeming the true eastern conference finals?
  • Clippers vs Rockets: Thanks to Chris Paul and his heroics L.A.dispatched the Spurs. Now Blake Griffin looks to hold things down while Paul nurses his hamstring injury. Dwight Howard is back to playing at a high level but it’s still up to James Harden to get Houston in position many didn’t think they would be able to reach and still doubt they can.
  • In this week’s Gon’Get we ponder the futures of the last teams out of the first round: Dallas has questions concerning Monta Ellis, Rajon Rondo and Tyson Chandler. The Blazers have to find a way to keep LaMarcus Aldridge out of Texas and also decide if they want to gamble on Wesley Matthews‘ return. The Bucks made some noise but will the return of Jabari Parker automatically allow them to achieve similar success next season? Time is up in Brooklyn as the Nets have failed with Deron Williams, Joe Johnson and Brook Lopez as their foundation but who goes and who stays? Oddly enough the Spurs are out as well and their future is unclear with Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili noncommittal to return or retirement.
  • We salute last week’s award winners; Steph Curry as the NBA MVP, Andrew Wiggins the ROY and Bob Myers as Executive of the Year. We give kudos to Damian Lillard and look at the future of two big names in the rumor mill DeMarcus Cousins and Ty Lawson.

All this and a lot more in this weeks episode of The Baseline.

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