Game One Preview: Blazers, Warriors Tip-Off First Round in Oakland

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This, after taking 23 in the month of March.

He took the Oklahoma City Thunder to the NBA Finals in 2012, so has solid playoff experience and will add his supreme scoring to the already strong Warriors offense.

"I was asked in six or seven [games], and I said six". And when the time does come, I want to be in a situation where I was able to help those guys get to the playoffs. While he's far from a finished product and has plenty to grow as a player in this league, the team has to be pleased with what they've gotten out of him thus far. It's kind of finally like we have the opportunity to be just as aggressive. "It feels like where I've always been and I'm comfortable there".

How are the Warriors preparing for this in practice? "They're feeling really good about themselves". The grip of these holds get tighter in the postseason.

Diallo had 12 points and 16 rebounds, and the Pelicans snapped a five-game losing streak with a 103-100 victory over the playoff-bound Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday night. Did fatigue factor in when it mattered most? That's a long shot, but the star point guard will attempt to gun his team into the second round in an improbable effort against a star-studded Golden State Warriors team - a team expected to three-peat as Western Conference champions. They also dished out 36 assists in those games and completely overwhelmed Portland with their consistent ball movement and balance. My guess is that Draymond Green has already tattooed "Blazers in six" on the inside of his lower lip.

The Blazers jumped to a 30-22 lead after one quarter, sinking 12 of 22 shots.

On the opposite side is Oakland native Damian Lillard and his cast of confident shooters, who ran off 10 wins in their final 14 games to sneak into the final spot in the West.

While Kevin Durant and Steph Curry played well, it was Ian Clark who incinerated Portland's defense. Kyrie Irving. Curry carried a gimpy knee into last season's championship round, but he also carried the burden of having to match LeBron tit-for-tat. I think they know that.

"If it was up to me, I'd play right now", he said.

At one stage, well into the season, Ingles led the National Basketball Association in three-point shooting at better than 50 per cent, and they will also play finals. But because they will be heavy underdogs in a playoff series that no one expects them to win.

If he does play, our models project Nurkic for 13.0 points, 8.7 rebounds and 2.5 assists over 26.4 minutes against the Warriors in Game 1. That'll have to play out in the postseason. Paul George is going to provide an fantastic man-to-man matchup against LeBron, making it their fourth playoff battle in the last six years, but the Cavaliers are too potent offensively and much deeper in their talent pool to be bothered this early.