In today's NBA, we've come to expect the expected and nothing more. Whereas March Madness provides perhaps the best platform in sports for Cinderella stories, the NBA's 7-game series playoff format makes for a fairly predictable tournament.
At the start of these NBA Playoffs, Professor Mike Lewis and I discussed potential Finals matchups on the podcast. The conversation consisted of predictions involving some combination of the Bucks, Celtics, Lakers, and Clippers. Like many who follow the NBA, we did not entertain the possibilities of the lower seeds like we would with college basketball. And perhaps we should have in a year of unpredictability.
Afterall, I learned in my pre-bubble research that the Miami Heat were effected by opposing crowds second most of any team entering the bubble; their 84.4% home winning percentage dropped to 42.4% when playing on the road this season. The bubble has ultimately served as a neutralizer for the Heat, who would not have had home court advantage in any of their playoff 4 playoff series had the NBA played a normal postseason.
But the Miami Heat aren't the only team in sports benefiting from a season of chaos. In this week's episode, Professor Mike Lewis and I discuss how a late start may benefit the Big 10 champion come Playoff time, how the NBA Bubble has been favorable to upsets, and why the 2020 MLB Playoffs feel like a toss-up. At the end of the episode, Mike also previews how Tuesday's Trump/Biden debate will intersect with the world of sports this week.
Listen to the full episode here: