NBA Outlook Playoff: 9/15 Preview


Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard defends Nuggets guard Jamal Murray/ Photo credit Denver Nuggets




Miami Heat (0-0) vs Boston Celtics (0-0)

When: Tuesday, Sept 15th at 6:30pm.

Where:ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Lake Buena Vista, Florida

TV: ESPN / Radio: N/A

Injuries:

Miami: None

Boston: Gordon Hayward (Out/ Ankle) , Tremont Waters (Day to Day/ Knee)

Miami:

112.1 - points per game

103.7 - points against

46.1 - Field goal %

Boston:

107.6 - points per game

100.0 - points against

45.0 - field goal %

Individual Leaders: Mia/Bos (*- 2020 Playoff Average)-

Jimmy Butler 21.8 / Jayson Tatum 25.3 -Points

Bam Adebayo 11.7 / Jayson Tatum 10.1 - Rebounds

Bam Adebayo 4.8 / Kemba Walker 5.3 - Assists

Key Match-ups:

Jimmy Butler vs Jayson Tatum

Goran Dragic vs Kemba Walker

Duncan Robinson vs Marcus Smart

Jae Crowder vs Jaylen Brown

Bam Adebayo vs Daniel Theis


Keep an eye on:

Point guard play: will be crucial in this series. Goran Dragic shined in the Heats win over the Bucks, averaging 19.8 points, 4.8 rebounds and 4.4 assists per game. In stretches, Dragic was the best player in the series. Kemba Walker has to play like cardiac Kemba if the Celtics are to move on to the NBA finals. Walker watched Kyle Lowry get the best of him in the last series in every facet. If Kemba is himself on both ends, it will tilt things in the Celtics favor throughout the series.


Jimmy vs Jayson: is a heavyweight battle at the forward spot. Both are multidimensional threats, all stars and the go to guy for their respective teams. Each are also masters at creating and exploiting mismatches, for themselves to get to their spots to score, and to create opportunities for their teammates. The defensive end between these two will be pivotal in who wins this match-up more times then not throughout the series, which will also greatly impact which team advances to the NBA finals.





Denver Nuggets (3-3) vs LA Clippers (3-3)

When: Tuesday, Sept 15th at 9pm.

Where:ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Lake Buena Vista, Florida

TV: ESPN / Radio: N/A

Injuries:

Denver: Will Barton (Out/Knee)

LAC: None

Denver :

103.5- points per game

105.5 - points against

46.0 - Field goal %

LAC:

105.5 - points per game

103.5 - points against

46.1 - field goal %

Individual Leaders: Den/LAC (*-Series Average)-

Nikola Jokic 25.8 / Kawhi Leonard 26.0 -Points

Nikola Jokic 12.0 / Kawhi Leonard 9.0 - Rebounds

Jamal Murray 6.7 / Kawhi Leonard 5.8 - Assists

Key Match-ups:

Jamal Murray vs Landry Shamet

Jerami Grant vs Kawhi Leonard

Monte Morris vs Paul George

Gary Harris vs Lou Williams

Nikola Jokic vs Ivica Zubac

Paul Millsap vs Marcus Morris

Michael Porter vs Montrezl Harrell


Keep an eye on:

Star players: ultimately determines who wins this type of game. It's game seven, stars have to be stars. Nikola Jokic has been the best player in the series. He's done it all while being efficient in the process by either scoring or facilitating to his teammates. Jamal Murray started the series slow, but has come on strong during the Nuggets two game winning streak, resulting in him averaging 23.5 points, 6.5 rebounds and 6 assists per game. Kawhi Leonard has been the most consistent Clipper all around and Paul George has scored 26 and 33 points in the last two games (both losses) for the Clippers. Defensively, they've struggled to put a strong 48 together, and Denver has taken full advantage. Whichever STAR tandem dictates the game on both ends best, their team, will take the series in seven.