Community Shootaround: First Round Playoff Series

After the NBA playoffs tipped off on Saturday with a handful of one-sided contests, things got a little more interesting on Sunday and Monday, with the Thunder, Knicks, and Nuggets among the teams to pull out victories in games that went down to the wire.

All three days of the playoffs so far, however, have had one thing in common: The home team has won. The road teams have an 0-11 record entering Tuesday’s action.

It’s not necessarily surprising that the home teams are controlling the eight series so far. Those clubs are the higher seeds, and home-court advantage is often a difference-maker in the postseason.

Still, it’s somewhat rare for the higher seeds to be quite this dominant to open the playoffs, especially when we saw so much parity during the regular season. The No. 2 and No. 8 seeds in the East finished the season just four games apart, while only two games separated the No. 4 to No. 7 teams in the West.

The lower seeds are going to start picking up some wins at some point, especially in Game 3s when they get to play on their respective home courts. But will any of them actually make it out of the first round?

Currently, lists all the lower seeds as series underdogs, giving the Mavericks (+140) the best chance to erase its 1-0 deficit and win the series. Those odds aren’t surprising — Dallas finished the season strong, was only a game behind the Clippers in the standings, and seems unlikely to face a fully healthy Kawhi Leonard in the first round.

The Suns (+150) and Pacers (+195) are also viewed as viable candidates to pull off upsets over Minnesota and Milwaukee, respectively. On the other hand, despite only being down 1-0 in their series, the Pelicans (+660) and Heat (+5000!) are massive underdogs vs. the Thunder and Celtics.

Of the teams who have to climb out of a 2-0 hole, views the Sixers (+380) as the strongest candidates for a comeback, followed by the Magic (+640) and Lakers (+870).

We want to know what you think. Will any of the eight lower seeds make it out of the first round? If so, which ones do you expect to see in round two?

Head to the comment section below to share your thoughts!

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