2021 NBA Finals predictions - Is Lakers-Nets inevitable?

Yahoo Sports senior NBA insider Chris Haynes, senior NBA writer Vincent Goodwill, NBA writer Seerat Sohi and NBA analyst LaJethro Jenkins reveal their picks for this season’s championship series — and almost all of them expect an L.A. vs. Brooklyn battle.

Video Transcript


CHRIS HAYNES: My NBA Finals match-up for 2021, I'm predicting that it's going to be the Los Angeles Lakers representing the Western Conference. And in the East, it's tough. You got Boston out there. You got Miami. You got Brooklyn. But I'm going to go with the Milwaukee Bucks.

I think there is a sense of urgency over there with that franchise. I think Giannis Antetokounmpo seems hungry. He wants to get there. Listen, this team is desperate. I'm going to go with the Milwaukee Bucks.

Obviously, I could be wrong. I'm not a fortune teller. So y'all calm down with your tweets at me and you mentions. But I'm going with the Los Angeles Lakers and the Milwaukee Bucks in the NBA finals.

VINCENT GOODWILL: My pick for the NBA Finals this year-- the LA Lakers against the surprise team in the Eastern Conference, the Brooklyn Nets, led by comeback player of the year Kevin Durant. The one problem is I don't know if Kyrie Irving in a championship series where LeBron James is on the other side compared to being with him. So I think the LA Lakers will take the NBA Finals in six games with Anthony Davis being the MVP.

SEERAT SOHI: I see the Lakers beating the Nets on the back of Anthony Davis' first Finals MVP, perhaps his first regular season MVP. The Lakers I think will have a little bit more continuity this year-- a couple more pieces down low with Montrezl Harrell. And Marc Gasol adds a little bit of depth, and LeBron James is still LeBron James.

LAJETHRO JENKINS: The West is definitely the Lakers. Other teams got better, but they got the bestest. The only team they had to worry about last year were the Clippers, you know, in my opinion.

And, you know, they didn't-- they didn't make the decisions-- they didn't make the moves they needed to make. They kept players they needed to keep. So I see the Lakers coming out of the West.

The East? Definitely the Nets. What Miami did last year, it was-- it was incredible. I do not see them repeating. I see them maybe making it to the Eastern Conference Finals.

The Celtics? The Celtics are just going do Celtics things. They'll make it to the semifinals or the finals potentially, but the Nets are the best team over there. And they have the biggest margin of error. They got two of the best scorers in the league, one of the best scorers of all time. They got an incredible bench.

KD-- we've never seen a player come back from that injury and be the same as they were, you know. And I don't think we'll get the KD we got in like 2017. But 80% of KD is still incredible, incredible, incredible max player. So it'll be a good series, but I got the Lakers. I got the Lakers in six.