2. LAKERS VS. 3 DALLAS
Season series: Lakers, 2-1.
Even without injured Caron Butler, this is the Mavericks' best team since their 2006 finalists, with 7-1 Tyson Chandler joining veterans Dirk Nowitzki, 32, Jason Kidd, 38, Jason Terry, 33 and Shawn Marion, 32.
They're as big as the Lakers and much deeper but essentially jump shooters who defend.
Prediction: The Lakers have the killer No. 1 option, inside game and multiple shot blockers ... assuming they show up.
4. OKLAHOMA CITY VS. 8. MEMPHIS
Season series: Memphis, 3-1.
I want my MVP vote back, with Randolph, the 20-10 machine on his fourth team, now the NBA's most underrated player.
Prediction: OKC, only because it has home-court edge.
1. CHICAGO VS. 5. ATLANTA
Season series: Chicago, 2-1.
Even if Joakim Noah and Carlos Boozer weren't struggling, the Bulls would soon be playing teams that make Derrick Rose's teammates beat them.
The Pacers couldn't and they were enough trouble.
Prediction: If Drew figures it out, this matchup gift will turn out harder than it looks too.
2. MIAMI VS. 3. BOSTON
Season series: Boston, 3-1.
Key stat: Miami started 9-8 but finished 49-16. Boston started 23-4, finished 33-22.
Boston blew out Miami twice in the season's first 15 days, but these aren't those Celtics or that Heat.
Prediction: The Knicks failed miserably to contain Rondo, but Miami has just the team to do it. If it does, it wins.