Let’s review the 2020 NBA playoffs and see who surprised, who disappointed, and what series were a must-watch…
Deciding what is the biggest surprise was quite hard to be honest, but in my opinion, it's the Milwaukee Bucks’ team. This team was impressive during the regular season, having the most wins and a secured 1st seed coming into the bubble.
Everyone thought that they were going to crush every opponent. They didn’t
They went 3-5 in the seeding games, lost their first game of the playoffs against a bad Orlando side - and they still went on to win the next four and pass the first round. They then went on to lose against The Heat. The Bucks were the favourite to win the East after Kawhi Leonard left the Eastern Conference last off-season. Therefore, the surprise and disappointment are huge for this team.
The Heat may be the most successful team at the moment. This team is simply impressive, eliminating the first seed in 5 games. They play extremely good defence, are complementary on offence and they can play small or big depending on the opponent’s tactic. This is the scariest team in the bubble right now - sorry Lakers’ fans, but they are. They currently have the best record with 8-1. Their match-up against the Celtics will be one for the books, a must-watch series.
Following this it’s not a surprise to say that Jimmy ‘Buckets’ Butler is the best player of the bubble playoffs. The Heat’s all-star was hard on defence, clutch on offense and a real leader in the locker room - he had it all. With him being a top-level player, the Heat can only win. Hard decision to not say Kawhi Leonard though, who carried his team against Dallas as well. But given Paul George performances in the second round and the series going 3-3 I had to give credit to the Heat Guard.
In terms of series, the best one out of the twelves was without a doubt the Denver Nuggets against the Utah Jazz. Coming back off a 3-1 deficit, having two players going off for multiple 50 points games against each other was crazy. Everyone thought the series was over after the Jazz went up 3-1, but the spirit and motivation on this Nuggets’ team was great. Their series against the Clippers shows it well, as they came back from another 3-1 deficit and forced a game seven Sunday night.
Overall, all Western Conference games were interesting while only the second round was worth a watch in the Eastern Conference. The two Conference Finals are probably going to be incredible. The West will see the Lakers going against one really good team (either the deadly duo of the Clippers or a strong Denver Nuggets side). While in the East it’s the toughness of the Heat against the calm and experience of the Celtics.