WYBA High School Rec League Playoffs Preview

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Bobby Rabaioli

Power rankings

The time has come for possibly the the largest and most competitive sporting event involving Walpole High School Students—the Rec League Playoffs.  Players from teams across the League are chomping at the bit to get on the court and dominate both friend and foe with the basketball skills and knowledge they have acquired throughout this season.  There are the odds-on favorites to win, and the clear-cut underdogs, but be sure not to forget the occasional sleeper team who comes out of the woodwork to surprise us all.  So here it is, a broken-down, game by game, in depth look at this weekend’s upcoming playoff weekend by Rebellion writers Michael Greulich and Bobby Rabaioli:

First Round Byes:

Magic (1): Mark Demarais and Will Walker have been a dynamic duo which has made the Magic the best team in the league.  Without a doubt they will find themselves in every game.  Anything but a championship will be considered a failure. -Greulich

Nuggets(2):  The Nuggets have rightfully earned a first round bye because they are the most lethal team from behind the arc.  Led by senior Brendan Chaisson and heavy-weight Michael Greulich, the Nuggets have easily defeated foes all year long.  Playoff success will all depend on their guard play and whether they can handle ball pressure in the home stretches of games. -Rabaioli

 

First Round Games:

Spurs (9) v Sonics (8)– The Spurs were last year’s cinderella team and look to repeat the same run.  In their first meeting, seniors Bobby Rabaioli and Cj Weinacht turned out to be the difference in a close game when Sonic’s superstar junior Bergomi Francois missed the game to suspension.  Expect the same result in the regular season so long as Rabaioli goes off.  #ROllSPURS -Greulich

Rockets (13) v 76ers (4)- There is no hope for the Rockets.  Without leaders junior DJ Villa and senior Matt Kadlick, the Rockets will lose big to the 76ers. -Greulich

Lakers (12) v Nets (5)– The Lakers are the team to watch this postseason due to them routinely having missing players throughout the season, which resulted in such a low seed.  senior Colin Murray may be one of the best players in the league, but senior Matt Brownsword and company should have no trouble handling Murray.-Greulich

Wizards (14) v Celtics (3)-This is no contest at all.  If these teams play 100 times, the Celtics win 100 times.  The Wizards will need senior Aidan Moore to show up if there is any hope at winning.  Expect a rout and nothing less than a satisfying win for junior Drew Naismith and the Celtics. -Rabaioli

Bulls (11) v Knicks (6)– UPSET ALERT. The Knicks will be no match for a feisty Bulls team that has nothing to lose.  Big man Kyle Gaughan and power forward James Smith will be the difference in a close game.  The Knicks’  juniors Tim McNamara and Chris Bender will be no match for the Bulls inside strength, resulting in a Bulls win. -Rabaioli

Heat (10) v Mavericks (7)– Athletic Guard junior Jack Lavanchy has been one of the few bright spots for the Heat as he has the ability to drive and score in traffic.  If the Mavericks want to prevent an upset from happening then junior Jack Donnelly will need to hit his threes early and often.  Expect nothing less than a hotly contested game with the Heat coming out on top 62-54. -Rabaioli

Second Round Games:

Spurs (9) v Magic (1)– The Magic have blown out the Spurs in two matchups so far this year.  Expect the same result. -Greulich

Lakers (12) v 76ers (4)– The 76ers have overachieved all season and continue to show strong signs heading into this battle. Senior Matt Toti should continue to reign supreme and carry the load for a 76ers’ win. -Greulich

Bulls (11) v Celtics (3)– Junior Kevin Mansen should neutralize the abilities of Smith while Naismith becomes unstoppable from behind the arc.  Celtics win big. -Rabaioli

Heat (10) v Nuggets (2)– This will be the first meeting between the two teams who missed their first game due to a forfeit from the Nuggets. Senior Harry Berkland, junior Seamus Ford, and Lavanchy will have their hands full with All-Star  senior Brendan Chaisson.  Look for Chaisson to carry the Nuggets to a narrow victory. -Rabaioli

 

Third Round Games:

76ers(4) v Magic (1)– The Magic just straight win.  Coach Mirable of the 76ers has done a terrific job coaching but coaching can only get you so far when you play against talent. -Greulich

Celtics(3) v Nuggets (2)-This will be a game for the ages.  The two best shooters going up against each other should bring one of the highest scoring games in recent memory.  Naismith and Chaisson may be friends off the court, but on it, they are enemies.  Celtics pull a last second victory out of the bag in the high scoring affair.  -Rabaioli

Championship Game:

Celtics (3) v Magic (1)– The most anticipated game of the year will be a close one to the end.  The Magic should just out class the Celtics and pull away late. -Rabaioli