The NBA announced last week that the regular season has officially come to an end and a 22-team playoff is scheduled to begin July 31. I haven’t followed the NBA in a good while. I think the league has turned into a version of a YMCA league: call your own fouls and score as much as you can. But thanks to The Last Dance, I’m excited about the NBA returning. This is where I require your help, dear reader. I don’t have a team to root for in the NBA Playoffs and I’m hoping you can help me decide. I’m proud to announce the Greatest Bracket Ever: NBA Playoffs Edition.

The Parameters

I have several parameters in helping decide a team.

1. No West Coast teams. I’m an East Coast guy and rooting for a West Coast team is kind of antithetical. That leaves out both Los Angeles teams, Phoenix, Portland, and Sacramento.

2. No Florida teams. I can’t root for a team in a state that knowingly has Carole Baskin living there. That leaves out Miami and Orlando.

3. No teams that have relocated in the last 15 years. So sorry to Brooklyn and Oklahoma City, even though I want to see Chris Paul win an NBA title before Houston (which I’ve already explained).

4. No Boston teams. As a lifelong Yankee and Jet fan, I can’t root for a team from Boston. Think about it this way: if you were living in Montreal, would you root for a team in Ontario? Exactly.

5. No Utah. Nothing against Utah, but I can’t root for the Jazz because I want to boo Rudy Gobert.

Who is left?

In the East, it’s Milwaukee, Toronto, Indiana, Philadelphia, and Washington. In the West, it’s Denver, Houston, Dallas, Memphis, New Orleans, and San Antonio. You could make the case that I shouldn’t root for Memphis or New Orleans. But the Grizzlies moved from Vancouver to Memphis in 2001 and the Pelicans moved from Charlotte to New Orleans in 2002. They became the Pelicans full time in 2013. And you also might say, “Ryan, you live in New York. You should be a Knicks fan.” Hear this now: I WILL NEVER, EVER BE A KNICKS FAN AS LONG AS JAMES DOLAN IS THE OWNER. (You can read why here.)

The Bracket

Let’s explore the Greatest Bracket Ever: NBA Playoffs edition. We have ten teams, five from each conference. Milwaukee and Denver are awarded first-round byes because they the freakin’ earned them. Here are the remaining seeds:

East

2. Toronto vs 5. Washington

3. Indiana vs 4. Philadelphia

West

2. Houston vs 5. San Antonio

3. Dallas vs 4. New Orleans

The lowest seed remaining will face the higher seed in the next round and then we’ll keep going until a winner is crowned. By the time the playoffs begin, I’ll have a team to root for. I’ll even buy some gear from the chosen team!

Voting will start today on the A-Round for the Weekend Twitter page. Vote and state your case for why I should vote for your team in the Greatest Bracket Ever: NBA Playoffs edition!

About Author

Ryan McCarthy

Ryan is a veteran of sports blogging since Al Gore invented the Internet. He has spent time with SportsHungry, e-sports.com, and ArenaFan. Ryan is a 2020 graduate from Regent University as a Journalism major. He hopes to make this sports media thing a full-time gig someday.

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