Yani's Column: OKC and CP3 threatening the Harden, Westbrook and the Rockets 
LAKE BUENA VISTA, FLORIDA - AUGUST 31: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander #2 of the Oklahoma City Thunder drives the ball against James Harden #13 of the Houston Rockets during the fourth quarter in Game Six of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 31, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

First of all before we get into things,  I've done a lot of talking on this subject and it's quite plain and simple - we are all of the same community, the basketball family, and we need to keep the Black Lives Matter fight up.

These black basketball players are our heroes, heroes to people of all ethnicities, nationalities and backgrounds and in the western world they still continue to be mistreated by society and killed for the colour of their skin.

Do as best as you can to educate those around you on why this is important, and it is extremely important, because there are people who are sick and tired of being treated horrifically - simply because the colour of their skin.

Paul George and the Clippers recover

The reason that the LA Clippers are the favourites to win the whole thing this year is because of Kawhi Leonard and Paul George.

I said last week that PG needs to get firing again and he has and I have confidence in him that he will continue to keep firing.

The Clippers have now disposed of the Mavs on their path to the Play-Off Final and PG has recovered, just like Khris Middleton did for the Bucks - but we will get onto the Bucks in a little while.

It's good to see these guys step back up to that level where they were at before and the Clippers simply will not win the Championship if Paul George slips below that level again and can only put up nine points a game, not a chance.

OKC forcing a game seven against the Rockets

It's a really cool contrast between the two teams here, OKC have a veteran leader in Chris Paul who got 28 points last night Monday night and zero turnovers in a game six against the Rockets, whereas Russell Westbrook had seven turnovers.

When it comes to these clutch moments, CP3 is all about the clutch moments, dropping threes, step-back moves, pulling all the moves out the bag but on the other side you have James Harden standing behind the arc looking like he just doesn't want it.

In terms of play-style, it is well documented the teams have a huge contrast in that respect - but OKC just keep on proving to me that they are one of the best teams to watch, and they are definitely one of my favourite teams to watch.

Between Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Danilo Gallinari, Steven Adams, Dennis Schroder and CP3, that five-man is just a fantastic five to watch and they are entertaining.

But the question is will the Rockets' star power just over-power the leadership of Chris Paul, or will that five man continue to impress?

Heat surprise Bucks in game one 

That first game was a great match-up, two sides going absolutely at each other, but the Heat deserved this and Giannis cannot be shooting 12 times in a match.

As Giannis said in the post game, you cannot look at the box score post match and see you he has only shot 12 times, that's not good enough, whereas the Heat turned up.

Goran Dragic and Bam Adebayo were very impressive, the later is becoming one of the most well-rounded players in the league and will continue to be so.

Jimmy Butler though, oh my word he was exceptional, putting up 40 points in a play-off game against the Bucks - the Philadelphia 76ers will be kicking themselves!

I have a lot of time for Butler, I have a lot of time for the Heat but I would be cautious if I was a Heat fan because the Bucks are not a joke and definitely missed Eric Bledsoe last night.

Don't read too much into the Raptors loss

Nick Nurse has shown throughout this season that he is one of the best coaches in the NBA, but in this chess match between the Toronto Raptors and the Boston Celtics, Brad Stevens has played his first move.

It's not game over for the Raptors, they know that it will be their turn to respond and Nick Nurse is just plotting his next chess move against the Celtics and this one will be interesting. 

I'd say the Raptors have been the most impressive team this year, but they need to stop the Celtics passing out of pick and roll moves and hitting threes, but this is a chess match and it is far from over.

Game Seven - Jazz v Nuggets

The Nuggets have the momentum and Jamal Murray has become the first person since Allen Iverson to put up three straight 40 point games which is incredible.

I definitely hope that Jamal Murray can continue to be this guy who can keep improving until he becomes an all star with this smooth bag of tricks and shooting ability.

The question that was always on my mind last year was if Jamal Murray can become this guy, and he has, so I am more inclined to say I'd rather watch them against the Clippers in the next round.

I do admire the Jazz, the line-backer Donovan Mitchell too, but there's so many players to admire in the Nuggets, Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray, Paul Millsap and Mason Plumlee all players I rate, so I'm going to back the Nuggets on this one.

Lakers next round predictions

I've seen OKC give the Lakers a tough game on a few occasions, most notably when they beat the LA side just before lockdown.

The Lakers are absolutely about this life, they have the two top players in the league in Anthony Davis and LeBron James, and it is very plausible that they just demolish everyone on their way to the Western Conference Final.

The Rockets are the only team that will really give them a proper game in the play-offs - two bonafide stars in Russell Westbrook and James Harden could match up well against AD and LeBron, so it will be interesting to see that game should the Rockets overcome OKC.

Ingram named this season's Most Improved Player in NBA

Brandon Ingram's rise from last year to this year has been monumental and if you look into the advanced stats, we have never seen a rise like this in shooting numbers.

Thoroughly deserved, Ingram is now a 25-5-5 player and there really can't be many question marks on Ingram earning this award.

A young, versatile player who will have the Pelicans throwing the bag in and he also has a big enough bag of tricks to be a large part of a title-winning side.

London Lions on TV

I'm so excited to see the game between the London Lions and Neptunas Klaipeda in the Basketball Champions League and fingers crossed it will be televised on Freeview, because I will get literally everyone watching it.

If you're reading this, watch it. Make your friends watch it. Make your family watch it.

It's going to be class.

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