NY Knicks: Predicting the Eastern Conference playoff seeding

NY Knicks, Julius Randle, James Harden Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
NY Knicks, Julius Randle, James Harden Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /
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NY Knicks, Joel Embiid (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images) /

NY Knicks — Playoff seedings: 76ers #3, Hawks #4

For my number three seed, the Philadelphia 76ers. Now, this is my prediction that I am the most unsettled on.

Philadelphia has one of the most dominant players in the entire NBA in Joel Embiid, and him alone can carry a team to the postseason.

However, when you look at the rest of the roster, it just doesn’t wow me enough to put them past a second-round exit.

Tobias Harris and Seth Curry are very nice pieces to have on a contending team but as long as they are continuing to try and make Ben Simmons work they will not get far. A three seed might even be a little wishful thinking.

Depending on what happens with Ben Simmons and his future in Philadelphia could change where the 76ers finish next year. But as of now, Simmons is a 76er and this roster should be capable of getting that three seed.

For the fourth seed, I put Trae Young and the Atlanta Hawks and as a Knicks fan, it’s hard. The Hawks exposed the Knicks, to say the least, last year in the playoffs with Trae Young playing his villain role in Madison Square Garden.

But besides the talented Young, they have near-perfect pieces who compliment the point guard. Clint Capela and John Collins are built for those alley oops and seem to be able to do it with their eyes closed.

If teams try to stop it, Bogdan Bogdanovic and Kevin Huerter are sitting on the 3-point line waiting for a catch and shoot.

It sounds so simple but is extremely difficult to slow down.

The reason I don’t have them as a #3 seed is that there are question marks that still do surround Atlanta and head coach Nate McMillan.

Before McMillan took over the Hawks they were underperforming and deep down in the standings, and that’s putting it nicely. But somehow they eventually turned it around with McMillan in charge and made the Eastern Conference Finals.

Was it a fluke? Was it just everything happening perfectly for them and gaining momentum at the right time? Or maybe it actually was just a great all-around job by Nate McMillan to light a fire under his team.