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Playoff Predictions, Take 2

Feb. 18, 2008
Feb. 18, 2008

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Feb. 18, 2008

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Playoff Predictions, Take 2

Some names have changed from SI's preseason picks, but the last team standing remains the same

EAST

This is an article from the Feb. 18, 2008 issue

FIRST ROUND

No. 1 CELTICS over No. 8 PACERS Overachieving Indiana provides a good test for Boston.

No. 2 PISTONS over No. 7 BULLS Detroit sets the tone for its playoff run with a series sweep.

No. 3 CAVALIERS over No. 6 WIZARDS The return of a healthy Gilbert Arenas will help force the James Gang to seven games.

No. 4 MAGIC over No. 5 RAPTORS In a tight matchup, Dwight Howard proves the decisive star.

SECOND ROUND

CELTICS over MAGIC Boston in six as Kevin Garnett flourishes in the high post.

PISTONS over CAVALIERS Detroit clamps down on LeBron, avenging last year's playoff loss.

CONFERENCE FINALS

PISTONS over CELTICS Detroit, peaking at the right time, carries the individual matchups.

WEST

FIRST ROUND

No. 1 MAVERICKS over No. 8 ROCKETS Dallas uses this series to play its way into championship form.

No. 7 NUGGETS over No. 2 JAZZ Denver takes down Utah in a breakneck seven games.

No. 3 LAKERS over No. 6 Hornets Kobe Bryant officially declares his candidacy for ring number four.

No. 4 SUNS over No. 5 SPURS San Antonio slows the tempo, but Shaq helps Phoenix win one of the great opening-round series of the last 20 years.

SECOND ROUND

MAVERICKS over SUNS After two playoff disappointments, Dallas has the resilience to outlast Phoenix.

LAKERS over NUGGETS L.A.'s defense and half-court execution neutralize Denver's high-scoring attack.

CONFERENCE FINALS

MAVERICKS over LAKERS Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol come up short as Dallas's experience wins out.

NBA FINALS

MAVERICKS over PISTONS The West is still best: Dirk Nowitzki (above) becomes the first European player to lead a team to an NBA championship.

PHOTOGREG NELSON