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GAME THREAD: Playoffs, Day 1

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The long march to the Finals begins

NBA: San Antonio Spurs at New Orleans Pelicans Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

WHO: 8 NBA teams

WHAT: The opening playoff games

WHERE: San Fransisco, CA; Toronto; Philadelphia, PA; Portland, OR

WHEN: 2:00 p.m. CT, 4:30 p.m. CT, 7:00 p.m CT, 9:30 p.m. CT

HOW: ABC, ESPN, WatchESPN app

THE STORY: The great part about all our comment sections these days is that they always turn into immense discussions about the possibilities before us in the NBA draft. It makes sense, really, because talking about the Mavericks as they’ve played the last two weeks isn’t really any fun and no matter how interesting a particular thing that, say, Harrison Barnes does in a game, we all know it doesn’t matter.

One of the best things about the off-season is the rampant speculation, the idea of what a team could be. Watching the NBA playoffs as an outside observer can be a great measuring tool for those of us who really like thinking long term about the Mavericks. Both the team and a portion of the fanbase seems to think that with a good draft and some solid free agency luck that the playoffs aren’t out of the question. Watching these games the next few months should help us gauge whether that’s actually realistic.

So who’s on deck today?

Playoffs, Day 1

GAME MATCHUP VS TIME (CT) NAT TV
GAME MATCHUP VS TIME (CT) NAT TV
WEST 1ST ROUND - GAME 1 San Antonio Golden State 2:00 PM ABC/WatchESPN App
EAST 1ST ROUND - GAME 1 Washington Toronto 4:30 PM ABC/WatchESPN App
EAST 1ST ROUND - GAME 1 Miami Philadelphia 7:00 PM ABC/WatchESPN App
WEST 1ST ROUND - GAME 1 New Orleans Portland 9:30 PM ABC/WatchESPN App

The Sixers-Heat series might be the most exciting, but it should be worth watching to see how Golden State looks after a rather pedestrian season. For our purposes these four games should largely be a stark reminder of the talent gap between Dallas and any of these teams.

Predictions: