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NBA Teams in an 0-2 Hole, and Their Chances of Coming Back

by Photo of Ankit Ahuja

Seven teams face an 0-2 series deficit. Which have the best shot at turning things around?

NBA Teams in an 0-2 Hole, and Their Chances of Coming Back

Early in the 2015 NBA Playoffs, the series have been pretty lopsided. Of the eight series, seven teams own a 2-0 lead. The only series tied at one a piece, is the Spurs vs. Clippers, which many believe will go all the way to seven games. Last year, five of the eight series were tied at one a piece. A couple things come to mind. First, the East is very weak. Every series is 2-0. The bottom teams in the East are just not very good. Also, injuries have played a huge role in a lot of games. We will take a look at which teams that are down 2-0 have the best chance of turning it around. 

No Chance

Boston Celtics

The Celtics are a great story and have remained close in the two games in Cleveland, but the Celtics just do not have enough talent to get by the Cavs. Late in games, the Cavaliers' stars have just been lightyears ahead of anybody on the Celtics. For example, in a close game two, LeBron James scored 15 points in the fourth quarter alone to beat the Celtics. There is a chance that the Celtics can get a game at home, but this series is all but finished.

Dallas Mavericks

This series has taken a complete downward spiral for the Mavericks. Already beat up with injuries, the Mavericks got terrible news yesterday. Forward Chandler Parsons is out for the year with a knee injury and troubled point guard Rajon Rondo is out indefinitely with a back injury. The Mavs had a real chance of winning this series, but with two bad performances in Houston and the injury news, it just seems like a huge task to come all the way back and win.

The Mavs have just been outmatched in this series in all facets. In game one, MVP candidate James Harden picked them apart scoring 24 points and dishing out 11 assists. In game two, it was Dwight Howard and Josh Smith who dominated. The best looking player on the Mavs has been J.J. Barea. There was so much hope coming into this series for Dallas, but that has quickly faded.

Slim Chance

New Orleans Pelicans

Let me be clear: the Pelicans are not winning this series. However, the Pelicans showed they can play with the Warriors. In the first two games, Anthony Davis was fantastic scoring 35 in the first and 26 in the second. Going home to New Orleans should be a good boost. Being with their home fans and with energy in the building, Davis and the Pelicans should win at least one of the next two games. 

For the Pelicans, it has to start with containing the back court of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson. In a tight game two, Klay took over the game late. He had 13 in the fourth quarter alone. Another key for Pelicans will be finding a source for scoring outside of Anthony Davis. That means Tyreke Evans and Ryan Anderson need to step up. The Warriors aren't letting anybody else get involved beside Davis. 

Milwaukee Bucks

The Bulls have been in command in both games of the series. In game 1 it was Derrick Rose who was fantastic. In game 2, it was Jimmy Butler. The Bulls have so many weapons, and it just seems like the Bucks will not be able to get over the hump. The Bucks have done a good job of neutralizing Pau Gasol in the series, but the Bucks need more outside shooting to get some wins in this series.

Their lack of perimeter scoring has hurt them in many ways. The Bulls have packed the paint on defense, daring the Bucks to shoot outside jumpers. Another problem for the Bucks has been the lack of impact the "Greek Freak" has made. He continues to struggle shooting the basketball, and the Bulls rim protectors have not allowed him a clean drive. The Bucks' best chance to win a game will be Game 3. The Bulls will be without Nikola Mirotic, so the Bucks bench could play a key role. 

Brooklyn Nets

The Nets were one wide open mid range jumper away from winning game two. Brooklyn has really surprised many people in the first two games of this series in Atlanta. Despite falling behind early in both games, they have fought back and nearly won both. The Hawks have struggled to close things out down the stretch and maintain the strong starts. They continue to move the ball, but shots are just not falling at the rate they would like. 

The Nets home crowd should be a big factor in these coming days. For the Nets to win, they will need more out of center Brook Lopez. He was amazing down the stretch in the regular season, but these first two games haven't been great. The Hawks will likely win this series, but it seems like Brooklyn can sneak away with a few games. 

Decent Chance

Portland Trail Blazers

Memphis has killed the Blazers in both games so far, but for some reason I still believe the Blazers can make something happen. They have a great home crowd, and they have two superstars. Damian Lillard has been borderline awful in the first two games, and LaMarcus Aldridge continues to be flustered by the Grizzlies' big men. Memphis has instilled a great game plan to combat the two stars. Another surprising thing about this series has been the bench of the Grizzlies. Backup point guard Beno Udrih has been fantastic, and Jeff Green has been great as well.

One reason I like Portland is because they might be getting shooting guard Aaron Afflalo back in game three. They have missed him a ton, and they will need outside shooting to stretch the defense. I think this series has the ability to go six or seven games because Aldridge and Lillard cannot struggle forever. 

Toronto Raptors

This is the only series where the road team has won both games. The Wizards were great and the Raptors have been flat out disappointing. In game one it was Paul Pierce who won it for the Wizards finishing with 20 points. In game 2, John Wall dropped 26 points and 17 assists. If the Wizards get that much production, this series will be over quickly.

I still believe in the Raptors because we haven't seen what Kyle Lowry can do yet. He fouled out in game one and only had 6 points in game two. Lowry will be a lot better when the series moves to Washington. He'll figure out a way to get going offensively and make an impact on the series. The problem with the Raptors has been their bench. In game two they were embarrassing. The Raptors bench was a combined -56 in game 2. That difference is just not right. The Raptors will rely more on their starters in the coming games, and this series could go to six or seven games.   


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