One One [Updated]

Although unlikely, I was wishing for at least either the Pacers or Thunder to fall down 0-2, and that would have been easier for us to make the pick for Friday. Alas that was not the case. With both matches tied 1-1, it's a gamble now for everyone in Drive To The Finals. With the Wizards and Clippers still owning home court advantage, some will still pick them to win with a chance to go up 3-1 if they win both home games 3 and 4. But, it is not difficult to imagine the Pacers and the Thunder to steal one game on the road, and gaining their home court advantage back.


But again, the thing is... this is the 2014 playoffs, and home court means... nothing.

You have to figure out now, which teams are most likely to win Game 3, and which teams are most likely to lose, and how one team's chances stack up against the other. For me, this is how it is:
  • Wizards -- 60%
  • Clippers -- 55%
  • Thunder -- 45%
  • Pacers -- 40%

Why The Pacers Will Lose
The Pacers won Game 3 with Roy's Hibbert's re-emergence. But that came with a price, I thought he became a sinkhole when the ball came to him and the Pacers' shooters were not able to cash in on the attention Hibbert was getting. Luckily for the Pacers, when the ball sunk into Hibbert, he was able to produce. He made 10 of 13, but imagine if he was at his average of 44%FG -- that would spell a loss. I am not sure if they can get back to being a well-balanced team in Game 3, which I think they need. They may still win, but I am risking my pick for another Pacer, Lance Stephenson. [UPDATE: Stephenson pick cancelled.]

Why The Thunder Will Lose
"We Are One", that's the Clipper fandom slogan and the Staples crowd will be louder than the Wizards' arena for sure. If the Clippers win, it will be the fans who will have the biggest impact on Game 3. Blake Griffin was subpar in Game 2 and he'll be looking to raise his game at it should be.

Why The Clippers Will Lose
Simply, because Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook won't allow it. They both had spectacular showing in Game 2, and to them playing on the road is not an issue. Just look at the Memphis series' Game 6. I don't see people changing their mind yet about the Thunder owning this series, especially with that Game 2 trampling.

Why The Wizards Will Lose
Umm, I can't see it yet. Maybe if Hibbert becomes the defensive force he was last year and this regular season.

So, after all tied 1-1, are you still rooting for the same teams to advance?

[UPDATE...]
Okay major change of mind here.

For Thursday's pick, I am changing to Damian Lillard. With the Spurs and Miami threatening to sweep (maybe), I have three chances left to pick the top three players among the Blazers+Nets. While Joe Johnson is still a viable pick, I decided to go for my best available player left, and worry about getting lucky with a Net pick later.


For Friday's pick, I am changing to Trevor Ariza even though the Wizards have the upperhand at this point. I realized I still have the full roster from the Wizards, and there are five 20-PRA guys in that roster (Beal, Wall, Ariza, Gortat and Nene). I only need to carry four of them into the Conference Finals, if they advance. Of their top three, Ariza is the one who has better luck vs the Pacers than the Heat. If Wizards lose Game 3, then it sets me up even better.

Fingers crossed.

53 comments:

  1. This decision has got me thinking quite a bit. I believe in the Wizards quite a bit but with only David West and Lance Stephenson worthy of a pick in Round 2 pick it's too early to write off the Pacers, and too early to pick a Hawk. The Miami Heat have no depth, so I'm going to need as many guys in the East as I can get. I'm thinking Blake Griffin in Game 3 and then finally making a decision and sticking with it in the Pacers-Wizards series. The Clippers have so many guys that I can lose my second player from their team, and I'm feeling a big performance from Blake on his home court. Time to have some fun!

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    1. Too early to pick a Pacer is what I meant to say. It is far too late to pick a Hawk haha.

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    2. Also, very happy to get above the 50 mark with 53 from KD. MVP! MVP!

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    3. Congratz on Durant's 53. And goodluck on the Griffin pick.

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    4. I got Durant too..it was extremely worth it ...I got lillard next for the Portland bounce back game..is that a good choice or is there anyone better ?

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    5. smetrokiva, congrats too on that Durant pick. As for the Lillard pick, I updated my post because I changed my mind and going with Lillard. He is the best PRA left available, that's for sure. Unless you have Aldridge.

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    6. The following day I'm going with john wall since he's had two relatively bad games so he'll be looking to bounce back at home especially after a loss. I always believe in the bouceback game cause it works 9/10 times..maybe you should consider it taong

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    7. I am not sure if "bounce-back" is 9/10, probably lower. But I am sure that "maintain-performance" is higher.

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    8. Both work in different ways. There is no guaranteed way to do it. Some guys like Dwight Howard and Russell Westbrook have spent the entirety of the playoffs consistently high. Others like Harden fluctuate like madmen, where each of his biggest performances came after duds. I try to play a little bit of both. It's a stock market, you're just hoping to get lucky. I would have picked Paul George to "bounce back" in Game 2, but he sunk lower. People picked Lance Stephenson to "bounce back", and he did - by a little bit. People picked David West to "maintain-performance" and he stunk up the building. Bounce back, in my opinion, works best with a team's go-to star, the biggest and brightest stars in the league. You can only keep a Kevin Durant or LeBron James performing poorly for a game or two, and they are veteran enough to shake it off and light it up if they start the next game with a hot hand. At the same time, Paul George is a star and he did not do well in a must win game 2. I've got LaMarcus Aldridge tonight to "maintain-performance", hopefully build on his strong finish to game 1. I've got Blake Griffin to "bounce-back" game 3, feeling one of those 40+ games that have been few and far between for him these playoffs. We'll see how it plays out. Hindsight is 20-20.

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  2. Btw, instead of using Anonymous, use the Name/URL instead. That way we don't mix up identities of our Anonymous friends. Thanks thanks!

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  3. At last I changed from Stephenson to Nene on Wednesday...
    For Thursday I'm going with Johnson... but I'm not 100% confident... It's clear I will bet on a Net, but I could change to Pearce...
    Friday will be Wall. This is the only pick I have scheduled on this round. Hope a great PRA...

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    1. Can't be 100% confident ever in this DTTF anyway. But Joe Johnson versus Paul Pierce, I'd take Joe.

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    2. Yes,... but Williams is also beating in my mind...

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    3. Looks like D Will is our invisible man of the night with 0 point points although he does have 12 assists+rebounds.

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    4. I switched from JJ to LA earlier, I need to break a five day streak of sub 25 pra's and I just saw that JJ would have just avoided red range with 20 but kept the <25 streak going. SInce this is LA that I'm taking <40 would be an awful game and I'm really hoping if he could get 46 in a blowout that he should have no problem getting 50+.

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  4. This is one of those picks that I am really happy with the way it turned out. Picked Stephenson and got me a 24 PRA. However, looking at the leaderboard, I have outscored the likes of Griffin (23 PRA, 3%owned), Ibaka (22 PRA, 3%), George (21 PRA 9%), Hill (21 PRA 2%), Nene (21 PRA 1%), West (17 PRA 19%), Jordan (16 PRA 5%), Wall (15 PRA, 4%), Ariza (14 PRA 2%), Crawford (11 PRA 1%) and Jackson (8 PRA 1%). Add those ownerships up and you will get a total of 50%. The other 46% are taken by Stephenson (23%), Beal (7%), Gortat (1%), Paul (3%), Westbrook (8%) and Durant (4%). The other 4% unaccounted for are those who aren't active anymore in this game, forgot to lock in their pick or are part of the 0% ownership. Hopefully, no one predicted a Hibbert explosion.

    As for tomorrow, I also pondered going with Lillard as he plays better on the road. Plus, they badly need to win Game 2 to even up the series. However, I am going with D-Will because I can feel a fired up Pierce and Garnett tomorrow might help the nets to at least trim the deficit while losing the game.

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    1. Good stuff, THCH! G'luck with your Dwill pick

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  5. Picked Lance, and am relatively happy with his production; main rival in my private league picked David West so a gain of 7 is decent enough for now.

    But this is getting harder and harder! Too many deep series will seriously stretch me. My hope is that after tonight Blazers are down 2-0 and Nets are down 2-0. I'm picking Joe Johnson for tonight because can't see them beating Miami 4 out of 6. There's an argument to say pick one of the elder statesmen as their fatigue will kill them in Games 3 and 4, but I'm holding out for a resurgent Pierce in Brooklyn.

    And then if Blazers go down 0-2, the other days can be Lillard and LA until we have a better picture in the other Thunder/OKC and Wizards/Pacers series.

    If these both go 1-1 after tonight, it'll be insane! Joe tonight... Leaning towards Trevor Ariza tomorrow. His matchup in East Finals would be so much tougher and he scored 30 points last time he played in Washington.

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  6. Ah, it could have been a great start to the second round for me. Had Paul first, would have taken Aldridge after that, and picked West yesterday. After I read about Durant and his MVP speech I believed those who said KD would be burning up the house in game 2 and wanted to switch, but I was too late, the Indiand game was already on and West disappeared behind Roy Hibbert. Could have been three daily leaders in a row, was rather pedestrian instead. Ah, well.

    For tonight my pick is still Lillard, but tomorrow is a tough nut. I am not totally convinced of the Wizards ousting the Pacers, and I have all of ´em left, so I will pick one. But which one? I don´t want to start too high on the list, so skipped Beal and Wall and tries to decide between Ariza, Gortat and Nene. I go with Nene, hoping he won´t be hurt too much after what happened to his ankle and instead will go to school with Hibbert. About time something went right for me again.

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    1. I also picked Ariza just in the extreme case scenario that Pacers win 3 straight. So Ariza, Beal, Wall.

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    2. Just saw Lillard during Heat game halftime. I am not liking his body language at all. Seems kinda ashamed.

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  7. Joakim Noah had his best game after winning DPOY. Kevin Durant had his best game after winning MVP. Well, Jamaal Crawford just won the Sixth Man of the Year Award - could he have a big game? Interesting.

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  8. Going with J Johnson, nets need to be competitive today unlike their soft effort in the 1st game which was surprising considering it's the team they were waiting for. Not picking a blazer yet there's still time for that.

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    1. Joe's PRA was saved by his two straight jumpers near the end of half. Still on pace for a 30+ PRA, he loves the 4th

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  9. The Heat look less than inspired out there. I have Shaun Livingston tonight, who started well. Hopefully he keeps it going. Didn't know both teams were going to play their bench tonight. Most of the starters are not doing much, but Teletovic apparently is tonight's hero, at least early on.

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    1. Nice pick, Daytona! Livingston is on track to exceed his max in playoffs. And it seems you are only one of a handful who picked him. Nice steal

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    2. Thanks! Every now and then you get lucky and find gold. More often than not, when picking players, even so called superstars, they disappoint, when you actually decide to pick them.

      It was painful watching Garnett put up 19 PRA tonight after that pathetic 4 PRA performance I got out of him in his last game, where he and many of the other Nets players spent much time riding the bench.

      Good luck!

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  10. The Wizards should be up 2-0... I can't believe that they got only 12 FTs and only made 5 of those, they also went 5/21 from beyond the arch, the chances of both of those happening are unlikely and if it does then the NBA gods want the Pacers advancing. I really need the Wizards to advance as I can't make it if a player I pick in round 1 (Paul George) is still playing in round 3.

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  11. That Heat-Net Game2 sucked. Only 3% got above 20 PRA

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  12. This is getting ridiculous now, my past 4 picks have struggled to even reach 20pra let alone 30. Shocking performances lately from players other then CP3,KD,Westbrook and LMA everyone else of note or 3rd to 5th options have stunk it up. Livingston got the highest this first game and his score wasn't even good you need to be getting atleast close to an average of 30 from your picks.

    hey atleast we know 1 thing, nets have no shot of beating heat it's like they're playing around with them, also my condolences to those who picked D-Will that's just a joke.

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    1. Getting more than 30+ PRA from more than maybe 10 players remaining is quite a feat, and certainly can't be expected. Most of these players, that are not elite average below 30 PRA mostly every night. You just pick them, and hope you get lucky on that night. More often than not, you don't and they woefully under-perform, especially in a slow paced, defensive series like Heat/Nets. The perils of picking from the losing team, or at least trying to do so, and carrying winning team players over to the next round.

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  13. Any hope for a turnaround, LA has only 12 pra at halftime and another blowout maybe in the making as the Spurs have opened up a 19 point halftime lead. LA is 3 for 10 from the field so while he isn't invisible he is in brick mode.

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  14. is anyone picking jamal crawford tomorrow? players tend to do well after getting an award prior to the start of the game in my opinion

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  15. I had Paul Pierce for 19......

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    1. That's a solid amount from Pierce. Better than me getting a 29 from Aldridge shooting 6-23. Ouch. Just couldn't get it going.

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    2. Brickridge probably killed the game for me, 29 from a guy who must break 40 when he's picked to have an average game for his standards, is just a total waste of his pick. Knowing my luck Durant and Westbrook will have their worst games.... just very discouraging to not even be close to average let alone above it. While this ends the streak of 5 straight <25s that wasn't done by much and would have rather gotten 20 from JJ than just 9 more from LAs more than likely worst game of the series. Sorry for being so negative but when you are picking a pair of of players from teams and are getting all the weaker games then it is less and less likely that I'll be in it when the finals come along.

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    3. Yeah, gotta just play through. I've had a 24 from Curry, a 25 from Harden and a 29 from Aldridge, but on the other side a 38 from Conley, a 44 from Paul and a 53 from Durant. I'm a pretty big fan of both Curry and Aldridge, so getting duds is painful because nothing feels better than a great performance from your favourite players (getting a 58 from Dirk when the Mavs won the championship was the best of feelings). The game is a combination of strategy, timing, and luck. Focus on the strategy and let the luck fall where it may.

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  16. So im not the only one who thinks jcrossover is an interesting pick tmmr. guys that get awards are usually pumped, but so far these playoffs, he really hasnt done anything to say that would change. Granted hibbert proved otherwise, but still, should I go with him? If not I was thinking about one of the bigs for the Wiz. ( I had planned to pick gortat for game 2 dropped 33, instead went with west..)

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    1. Go with Crawford if you have guts and wanna have someone else that the public won't pick ..I personally am going to pick Crawford since I believe that he will come out to show his fans at staples center why he was named the sixth man of the year

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    2. I'd pick Crawford but I've already decided on Blake Griffin and don't plan on switching from that. I think both guys have a big game.

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    3. I like the crawford idea as well. but the stats dont lie. Has done much worse in the playoffs than in the reg season. He is just not a playoff guy. At least with the wiz bigs u at least gonna get 10/10 (around that much) with the second round of the playoffs, picking players that get you around 20s is probably the best its going to get. The first round of playoffs is where most of your points are going to be made anyways.

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    4. You do have a point there..man your actually making me reconsider my pick to Deandre Jordan then since I believe that the wizards will beat the Pacers. Anyone else have thoughts on the crawford pick for tmorrow?

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    5. I just want more confirmation and see what others think of crawford. I mean I dont want to pick him just because of the emotional HIGH one gets from receiving an award. However, if he does get the game we all expect and I dont choose him, I be kicking myself real bad. Already made a bad choice in going for west over gortat, and lillard over batum. I dont think I can handle another bad choice

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    6. You shouldn't pick crawford then since he is a huge risk. If you want to be safe, pick a big like Deandre Jordan that will generally guarantee at least 20 or more PRA. I changed to Jordan after thinking it through a bit and realizing that Jamal isnt getting the minutes he was getting during the regular season and that he was only averaging 15/1/1 which is definitely an underachieving stat line. If you are wondering why im not picking the Wizards, I personally feel like they will win the series against Indiana.

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    7. Need more reasons to pick a player. A sole reason that is conditional and happens only once in the playoffs is not good enough. Last two years of DTTF, I actually avoided them.

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    8. I took Stephenson in G1 and got 20 and West in G2 and got 17, If I had taken them in reverse I would have gotten 29 and 24. On the other days I took Lillard (24) and Aldridge (29), if those were reversed I'd have gotten (46) and (29) yeah Lillard tied Aldridge in G2 but I lost 17 from taking LA in the wrong game and 12 from doing the same with West. I only lost 4 with Stephenson and 5 with Lillard but since I was still getting weaker performances it all adds up to 38 lost PRA! That is A LOT! Need the Wizards to win though I still can't get over that 5/12 at the FTL.

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    9. ouch.. but we all have picks that we regret. Hindsight is always 20/20

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  17. yea, BG isnt a bad pick, jamal crawford is a huge risk though but its one im willing to take since I have 684 points right now and on top of my league

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  18. My last four pics have been under a 22pra...
    .....
    Jamal Crawford 19
    Shaun Livingston 12
    George Hill 21
    and Paul Pierce 19
    ...
    Before Paul I had dropped to the 93 percentile :/

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  19. I'm betting on the WAS and OKC to win their series....
    .....That being said I'm going with Blake Griffin tomorrow at home.
    I was going to go cold with J.J Redick, but I have had a run of low pra's as seen from my post above and really would like to break that trend lol....... Looking forward to my fellow Sooner(yes I'm a Sooner fan) to put up some big points for me in a tremendous loss to my Thunder..... (saving Lance Stephenson and David West for their home games)

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