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NBA playoff update: Suns sweep, Nets backs against the wall

The Suns punched their ticket to the conference finals and the Nets have their backs against the wall after the Bucks tie the series 2-2.

Stephen A. Bayless

The playoffs are heating up with one team already punching their ticket to the conference finals. It's nice to feel the energy of the crowd after what we had last year in Orlando. Man, am I glad to not see virtual fans behind the bench.

Besides the Clippers, can anyone tell me why they still have cardboard cutouts in the stands? I thought we as a society made sure to never put cardboard cutouts in seats again at sporting events. Anyway, we're going to do a quick update on each series.

Suns sweep the Nuggets

The Suns completed their sweep last night, putting the Nuggets away 125-118. The series was an ass beating on and off the court.

First off, this Nuggets fan should never be allowed at a sporting event again. Not only did he initiate the fight, but he also lost while having the high ground. Here's some sports fan 101: never engage in a fight if you have the low ground. It never works out well. All that's going to happen is you getting your ass kicked which will end up plastered all over the internet. You can tell the Nuggets fan got cocky because he had leverage.

But the Suns fan took it like a champ and put an absolute beating on this Nuggets fan. He did it hockey style. Grab the shirt and fire off as many uppercuts as possible. Once he yelled "Suns in 4", you knew the Nuggets were dead.

On the court, the Suns looked near unstoppable. I wasn't 100% convinced the Suns were going to make any noise, but they look like the best team in the West. When the regular season ended, they gave me heavy Demar Derozan/Kyle Lowry Raptors vibes. Devin Booker and Chris Paul may be the best backcourt in the playoffs. I know this is horrible to say, but I have a feeling Chris Paul is about to have some type of injury that's going to make him sit out. Is it the NBA playoffs if Chris Paul doesn't get injured in a big moment?

The big news was the Jokic ejection. I thought it was a flagarant, but not enough to eject him.

Tough look by the officials ejecting the MVP. A terrible way for Jokic to end his season. Is that the first time in NBA history that the MVP of the league's season ended in an ejection?

The Suns look great and might take this hot run all the way to a championship.

Bucks tie the series 2-2 with the Nets

The Bucks looked dead leaving Brooklyn. Down 2-0, Giannis was exposed AGAIN in the playoffs, along with Brooklyn looking like the greatest team ever assembled. Well, the series is going to Brooklyn 2-2, with Milwaukee having all the momentum.

The big news about this series is Kyrie going out with an ankle injury. To anyone calling this a dirty play, please blast them to the sun.

It's a bang-bang play. Nothing close to what Zaza did to Kawhi. I'm surprised that kind of play doesn't happen more often to be honest.

Can KD carry the burden? We all know the Bucks are a legit team and saw what happened to the Nets once Kyrie went down. I don't know if the Nets have enough offense to compete with a team like the Bucks with no Kyrie or Harden. The Nets role players looked awful once Kyrie went down. The Bucks sent the house on KD and he clearly looked flustered. PJ Tucker looks like the most annoying player to play against.

Also, the Giannis shooting yips is crazy. The fact that he can't shoot a free throw in his building just shows how much he's in his own head. He's 11-29 at the line and takes forever to shoot. The viral thing on the internet was showing how Usain Bolt runs a 100-meter dash quicker than Giannis shooting a free throw.

Steve Nash needs to make the right adjustments to put KD in better spots. Not quite sure how Nets fans feel about his right-hand man being Mike D'antoni. He doesn't have a history of falling short in the playoffs, right?

Sixers take the lead over the Hawks 2-1

We'll recap the next two series quickly. The Sixers regained control of the series. Looking at the last two games, the Sixers look bigger, faster, and stronger than the Hawks. Capela is a good player, but there are times when Embiid makes him look like a JV player practicing against varsity.

Ben Simmons' lack of offense is a little concerning, but it should be enough to close out the Hawks. His defense has been key for the Sixers. Maybe we, as an NBA community, need to accept the fact that Ben Simmons just isn't good at offense. Strictly becoming a defensive juggernaut might be the move. Rudy Gobert has certainly made a living on only being useful on one side of the ball like a football player. We hear it every year that this is the season that Ben Simmons finds his shot.

It was a fun season for the Hawks, but I expect the Sixers to close this series out in five, maybe six. Please ignore the statement I just made if the Hawks win tonight.

Clipper get their first win of the series over the Jazz 2-1

I feel like this series has been under the radar but certainly has the star power. Maybe it's because they always play at 10 pm for us east coasters.

Anyway, Donovan Mitchell is a beast. He has taken another step forward on being an NBA star. I think the Jazz can close this series in five if they grab the win tonight. I say that because there's something about the Clippers that tells me they're going to choke. I know they came back against the Mavs, but for whatever reason, this Clippers team screams second-round exit. Maybe it's because the Clippers can't get Playoff P out of Paul George.

If the Clippers lose this series in an embarrassing fashion, does that mean Kawhi is gone? It will certainly make the summer interesting.