The Brooklyn Nets entered the playoffs as the clear-cut favorites to come out of the Eastern Conference and win the NBA Finals. That trio of Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant, and James Harden was an offensive juggernaut like we had never seen.
They didn't have much trouble getting past the Boston Celtics in the first round but James Harden's injury was going to be an issue against the Bucks. Even so, they managed to get the first 2 games of the series in a convincing fashion.
But, now that Kyrie Irving's availability for the remainders of the season is also up in the air, the Nets are facing quite the predicament.
That's why Skip Bayless now believes that the Milwaukee Bucks have a strong shot of taking the Nets down and that the Philadelphia 76ers are the favorites to win the Eastern Conference:
"Kyrie's turned ankle looked BAD. Hope it turns out not to be. But if he's gone for a while, and Harden can't return soon ... the Bucks have a shot and the Sixers are the favorites," Bayless tweeted.
The Bucks just tied the series at two games apiece. The Sixers, on the other hand, are currently sitting at a 2-1 lead over the Atlanta Hawks.
There's no doubt that whichever team makes it out of the Eastern Conference has a strong shot at winning the NBA Championship.
For the first time in years, it seems like the league is wide open and the Larry O'Brien trophy is up for grabs. In fact, none of the teams still in contention has won a ring in decades, if ever.
Hopefully, though, Kyrie Irving's injury will not define this season. You hate to see the best players get hurt, especially come playoff time, even if it's also a part of the game.