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Cavs Nation’s Second Round NBA Playoff Predictions

Andrew D. Bernstein | Getty Images

Houston Rockets (2) vs Los Angeles Clippers (3)

Prediction: Clippers in 6

The Clippers did what many thought was impossible in the first round. Beat the San Antonio Spurs in the playoffs. The Rockets meanwhile made light work of the Dallas Mavericks and won in 5.

The season series was split 2-2, but those numbers are almost completely irrelevant. Dwight Howard missed all four games, while Blake missed two of them. With both superstars healthy and ready to rumble, this one will be a clash of the titans.

There are some seriously exciting matchups to keep an eye on here. First up is Chris Paul vs his hamstring. Can the perennial all-star keep healthy for the entire series? The Rockets have been forced to start Jason Terry at the point, with the majority of the ball handling duties being given to James Harden. That still means that Terry would have to check Paul on the defensive end.

The Rockets would be forced to guard Paul by committee, which should lead to open shooters around the floor. If Chris Paul can stay healthy, he could very well tear this series apart.

Blake Griffin also has that opportunity against Terrence Jones and Josh Smith, while Dwight Howard will also pose problems for the Clippers against DeAndre Jordan. The Clippers bench and their depth will be tested, meaning LA’s starters have to perform each and every night.

James Harden will be called upon to do most of the damage for the Rockets. J.J. Redick won’t be able to guard him alone, so very much like Chris Paul, the Clippers will have to help Redick often. Harden was an MVP candidate all season, and hearing he didn’t win it will only put more of a chip on his shoulder.

LA simply pose to many matchup issues, and have failed to many times in the past to let this one slip.

Click ‘Next’ to see our predictions for the Hawks-Wizards series!

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