Charles Barkley made a bold prediction on Inside the NBA on Thursday night, saying that the Portland Trailblazers would beat the Los Angeles Lakers in the first round of the NBA playoffs. Of course, this bold prediction came during a segment where Ernie Johnson asked for bold predictions, but still, that's pretty bold!
As we approach the NBA bubble restart next week, the Blazers are on the outside looking in at the playoffs. Portland, along with the New Orleans Pelicans and Sacramento Kings, is three and a half games behind the Memphis Grizzlies for the eighth seed and the honor of playing the Los Angeles Lakers in the first round.
The idea of a 29-37 team beating the second-best team in the league in a seven-game series is pretty far out there, but the Blazers will have Jusuf Nurkic for the first time this season so that must be something, right? Nurkic averaged 15 points, 10 rebounds, 3 assists in 27 minutes a game last season, but is he really enough to turn a sub-.500 team into a title contender? Well, Barkley certainly believes. He has been saying the Blazers were a legitimate contender for the last month.