NBA Playoff Predictions 2013

2013 NBA PLAYOFF PREDICTIONS AND PREVIEW

WhatIfSports.com presents the 2013 NBA Playoff Preview and Predictions. The main bracket and round-by-round series breakdowns are below. The table to the right of the bracket displays the likelihood of each team advancing, based on its performance in the simulation.

We simulated the entire schedule of the 2013 NBA Playoffs 1,001 times, taking into account home court advantage and the statistical makeup of each team. To toggle between rounds, click the appropriate link below the bracket. You can simulate any game in the playoffs yourself using our free NBA SimMatchup feature.

Round 1
Conf. Semis
Conf. Finals
NBA Finals
1
8
Heat
Bucks
4
1
4
5
Nets
Bulls
4
2
3
6
Pacers
Hawks
3
4
2
7
Knicks
Celtics
4
2
1
8
Thunder
Rockets
4
2
4
5
Clippers
Grizzlies
4
2
3
6
Nuggets
Warriors
4
2
2
7
Spurs
Lakers
4
2
1
4
Heat
Nets
4
1
6
2
Hawks
Knicks
3
4
1
4
Thunder
Clippers
4
3
3
2
Nuggets
Spurs
2
4
1
2
Heat
Knicks
4
2
1
2
Thunder
Spurs
3
4
1
2
Heat
Spurs
4
3

WINNING PERCENTAGES

Eastern Conference
Seed/Team Round 1 Conf. Semis Conf. Finals NBA Finals
1 Miami
95.2% 90.0% 81.6% 53.4%
2 New York
74.7% 50.2% 9.2% 2.7%
3 Indiana
48.2% 19.0% 2.2% 0.5%
6 Atlanta
51.8% 21.1% 2.0% 0.4%
4 Brooklyn
68.0% 6.4% 2.3% 0.1%
7 Boston
25.3% 9.7% 1.3% 0.1%
8 Milwaukee
4.8% 2.4% 1.1% 0.0%
5 Chicago
32.0% 1.2% 0.3% 0.0%
Western Conference
Seed/Team Round 1 Conf. Semis Conf. Finals NBA Finals
2 San Antonio
91.4% 73.2% 40.8% 19.1%
1 Oklahoma City
75.4% 50.7% 31.7% 17.0%
4 L.A. Clippers
80.7% 35.8% 14.7% 3.6%
3 Denver
80.7% 22.6% 8.6% 2.7%
8 Houston
24.6% 9.8% 3.2% 0.4%
5 Memphis
19.3% 3.7% 0.8% 0.0%
7 L.A. Lakers
8.6% 3.0% 0.2% 0.0%
6 Golden State
19.3% 1.2% 0.1% 0.0%
Miami Heat logo
New York Knicks logo
1
2
Heat
Knicks
4
2
Heat
Record: 66-16
Analysis: The best player in the world continues to improve. LeBron James averaged career-highs in field goal percentage (56.5), three-point percentage (40.6) and rebounds (8.0) in leading the Heat to the NBA's best record and a 12-game lead over the No. 2 seed Knicks in the Eastern Conference. A stretch from February 3 to March 25 defined the Heat's season, as the team rattled off 27 consecutive victories, the second-longest winning streak in league history. Since losing to the Bulls on March 27, Miami has gone 10-1 despite resting their stars for a playoff push.

The team will attempt its title defense with a bench that's a bit more robust than the squad that beat the Thunder in five games in last year's Finals. Among the new faces are Ray Allen, Rashard Lewis and Chris Anderson. Allen, who turns 38 in July, has embraced his new role as sixth man, providing the second unit with perimeter shooting.

Miami is heavily favored to return to the Finals, but New York and Indiana are both capable of hanging with James and co. in a seven-game series.

Knicks
Record: 54-28
Analysis: The Knicks aren't just an old team; they're the oldest in NBA history. Among the gray hairs are Jason Kidd (age 40), Marcus Camby (age 39), Kenyon Martin (age 35) and rookie Pablo Prigioni (age 35). Two more players, Kurt Thomas (age 40) and Rasheed Wallace (age 38), logged logged time as well but will not be on the playoff roster. Despite all of the geriatrics, the Knicks totaled 54 victories, the franchise's most since a 57-win season in 1996-97.

Carmelo Anthony led the way offensively, averaging an NBA-best 28.7 points per game. He was especially potent at the conclusion of the regular season, averaging 36.9 points per game in the month of April. The other catalyst for the team's success was the emergence of J.R. Smith. The ninth-year player, who averaged a career-high 18.1 points and 5.3 rebounds per game, is among the favorites to win the Sixth Man of the Year award.

Amar'e Stoudemire's playoff status is uncertain due to a knee injury. For the purpose of the simulation, we included Stoudemire on the Knicks' roster and depth chart. However, the team's success may not depend on his participation, as the Knicks were 15-12 in games in which Stoudemire logged minutes.

Chances of Winning Conference Finals: Heat 81.6% - Knicks 9.2%

Series MVP: LeBron James - 25.4 PPG, 9.1 RPG, 7.5 APG

WIS Interactive: Simulate Matchup

Oklahoma City Thunder logo
San Antonio Spurs logo
1
2
Thunder
Spurs
3
4
Thunder
Record: 60-22
Analysis: Add yet another reason to heap praise upon Kevin Durant. By shooting 51.0 percent from the field, 41.6 percent from three-point range and 90.5 percent from the free throw line, all career-highs, Durant became the sixth member of the 50-40-90 club. He joins Larry Bird, Mark Price, Reggie Miller, Steve Nash and Dirk Nowitzki as the only players to accomplish the feat.

While Durant's incredible efficiency certainly doesn't hurt, it's been a collective effort that has the Thunder poised for a return to the NBA Finals. Serge Ibaka submitted career highs in points (13.2 per game), rebounds (7.7 per game) and field goal percentage (57.3 percent). Russell Westbrook continued his role as distributor and second scoring option, while rebounding at a career rate.

Although Kevin Martin has provided a scoring punch off the bench, he represents a step down from the departed James Harden, who's enjoying a career year with the Rockets. If the Thunder should falter, many will wonder what could have been had the Durant-Westbrook-Harden nucleus stayed intact.

Spurs
Record: 58-24
Analysis: Age has been a lingering discussion with the San Antonio Spurs for quite some time, but an obstacle they've successfully been able to hurdle in the past. Alas, one of the pitfalls of senescence is vulnerability to injury, a problem that's muddled their outlook for the 2013 playoffs. Manu Ginobili is nursing a hamstring that puts his availability in doubt. Though he's been on the court, Tony Parker is dealing with a plethora of ailments to his ankle, neck and leg. Even Boris Diaw, who's provided a solid presence off the bench for the team, is out for the next month after undergoing back surgery. Has Father Time finally taken its toll on the Silver and Black?

Not if Tim Duncan has anything to say about it. The venerable Duncan is showing no signs of decrepitude, averaging 17.8 points and 9.9 boards this season in just 30 minutes of game time. More impressive is the 14-time All-Star's 2.7 blocks per game, his highest mark since the 2003-04 season, and his career-best 81.7 percentage from the charity stripe. Kawhi Leonard is emerging as a potential star for the Spurs, and Tiago Splitter and Danny Green are serving as sound complements, but if San Antonio holds any aspirations of a championship run, it will be on the back of its 36-year-old franchise player.

Chances of Winning Conference Finals: Thunder 31.7% - Spurs 40.8%

Series MVP: Tim Duncan - 17.6 PPG, 11.3 RPG, 2.8 BPG

WIS Interactive: Simulate Matchup

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