3 Unexpected Teams That Might Make a Run in the NBA Playoffs

Patrick Devine, Sports Writer

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The NBA Playoffs have officially started and there are only 14 remaining teams left to contend for the NBA Finals. But the results will possibly not be what you expect because, I believe that the Houston Rockets, Philadelphia 76ers, and the Denver Nuggets all have a chance at winning the NBA Finals. But out of these 3 teams which one will make a run to the Finals?

Coming in at number 3 is the Portland Trail Blazers, the Trail Blazers this season has been pretty good, posting a 53-29 record in the regular season but people still kept doubting them. One of the reasons for this is their recent playoff loses in the first and second rounds. But this year might be different because of the recent explosion of Damian Lillard and CJ Mccollum. Lillard this postseason has been ecstatic averaging 33 points, 6 assists all while averaging 46 percent from 2. Another player on the Blazers is SG CJ Mccollum, McCollum this postseason has also been pretty good averaging 24.4 points, 4 assists, and 5.4 rebounds per game. But can the Blazers finally reach the conference finals since 2000?

Tim Brown
Damian Lillard shooting the game-winning 3 pointers in their first-round series against the Thunder. Right now the Blazers might actually have a chance to reach the Conference Finals for the first time in 19 years

Next, at number 2 we have the Philadelphia 76ers, the Philadelphia 76ers during the regular season posted a decent 51-31 record. That might seem like a good record but considering how much hype they have gathered with the recent players they have acquired. In their first-round series against the Brooklyn Nets, they are currently up 3-1 and they so far have looked dominant with 6 players averaging 10 PPG or higher. One of those players is Joel Embiid who is averaging about 25 points, and 13 rebounds per game, with averaging only 26 minutes a game. Another player on the 76ers is Tobias Harris, Harris since he has got traded to the 76ers has looked good but not as good as he was on the Los Angeles Clippers. He is averaging about 19 points, 9.3 rebounds, and 4.3 assists per game. But can the 76ers defy the odds and go to their first conference finals since 2001?

Brian Mahoney
76ers PG Ben Simmons shooting a layup in Game 5 against the Brooklyn Nets. Can the 76ers after 5+ years of rebuilding finally get to the Conference Finals for the first time since 2001?

Finally, at number 1 we have the Denver Nuggets, the Nuggets this season posted a 54-28 record while placing 2nd in the Western Conference. But in the playoffs so far they have not been that successful going 3-2 in five games in their first-round series against the San Antonio Spurs. One of their top players this series is C Nikola Jokic, Jokic in the postseason has been his normal self averaging around 20 points, and 11 rebounds per game. But one of the problems in this series is they are only making 73 percent of their free throws. And another problem is that the Spurs have 3 players that are averaging over 19 PPG in the series so far. But can the Nuggets step up their defense and win their first playoff series since 2009?

Brian Fonseca
Nuggets PG Jamal Murray dribbling down the court in Game 2 against the San Antonio Spurs. Can the Nuggets finally get to the promised land and win their first finals in franchise history?

Overall all these teams on this list have been doubted over the course of the season and they now have a chance to show everybody what they are capable of. But will any of these 3 teams have a chance at possibly making a run into the playoffs or will they just have to wait until next year so they can finally make that run that will propel them into greatness?