Western Conference: (2) San Antonio Spurs vs. (5) Memphis Grizzlies
If you love watching good defense, then this is the series for you. The Grizzlies are the best defensive team in the league, and the Spurs are not too far behind. Marc Gasol will be the key player in the series with his responsibility to slow down Tim Duncan. Duncan is the leader of this team, and if he plays well, then everyone else seems to follow suit. Memphis has to steal a game in San Antonio, and I believe that they will do so. Conley is playing the best basketball of his career, and he will have to continue that to outplay Tony Parker.
Prediction: Memphis in 6 games.
Eastern Conference: (1) Miami Heat vs. (3) Indiana Pacers
Paul George has proved to be one of the premier defensive players in the league, and he will have another task this series. George caused Carmelo Anthony a lot of trouble, and in order to stay competitive in this series, he will have to force LeBron to make some mistakes. The Pacers cause some mismatches already for the Heat with good big men.
Roy Hibbert is the key player in this series. If Hibbert plays like he did late in the series against the Knicks (He had 21 points, 12 rebounds, and 5 blocks in Game 6), then the Pacers have a very good chance in this series. I think the Pacers are so close to being the best team in the East, but they aren’t there just yet. LeBron is still in his prime, and he needs this title while Wade is still playing well.
Prediction: Miami in 7 games.