The 2017 NBA playoffs tip off on Saturday, but not every series is created equal.
You're going to have a lot of basketball to watch over the coming weeks, at least until we whittle the field down from 16 teams to eight. So to help guide you through the NBA's April madness, we're ranking each opening-round series based on how much fun you'll have watching the games.
Enjoy — and don't be afraid to skip a few postseason tilts you'd rather not watch. Life's too short to watch bad basketball.
San Antonio Spurs vs. Memphis Grizzlies
We love Kawhi Leonard, Marc Gasol, Vince Carter, Mike Conley, and most of the players in this series — but we're also NBA diehards. So with that said:
Boston Celtics vs. Chicago Bulls
This should have been the Heat.
A Miami-Boston series would have been infinitely more interesting than a Celtics-Bulls snoozefest, but the Brooklyn Nets ruined that by resting everyone in their season finale and giving Chicago a pass into the postseason.
Now, we have to watch Dwyane Wade and the Bulls try to score against Boston's buzzsaw defense, all while Jimmy Butler wonders why Chicago didn't trade him to the Celtics at the deadline. Poor, poor Jimmy Buckets.
Washington Wizards vs. Atlanta Hawks
John Wall can make any basketball game exciting. Other than that, though? Tuning in for a seven-game series featuring late-career Dwight Howard doesn't sound like any fun at all.
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Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Indiana Pacers
The matchup between Paul George and LeBron James provides plenty of on-court intrigue, while Lance Stephenson's return to Indiana offers the chance for an explosive run-in with The King during stoppages in play.
The only problem: This series is going five games, max — and we'll be surprised if it lasts that long.
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Toronto Raptors vs. Milwaukee Bucks
We're shocked this series ended up with the most NBA TV dates, because a slugfest between Kyle Lowry's Raptors and Giannis Antetokounmpo's Bucks should be a ton of fun. Both teams have the kind of defensive length that leads to steals and transition buckets, and the superstars should put on a hell of a show.
At the very least, we get Playoff Greek Freak. What more do you need?
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Los Angeles Clippers vs. Utah Jazz
The Jazz don't move the needle for the casual NBA fan; here's hoping this postseason changes that.
Utah and Los Angeles are two evenly matched teams — and potentially the two biggest threats to the Warriors in the Western Conference. All seven games of this series should go down to the wire.
And there's the added bonus of a potential Clippers implosion if the Jazz can take the first two games on the road. After all, it feels like this L.A. squad is on the verge of fistfighting each other half the time they take the court.
Golden State Warriors vs. Portland Trail Blazers
Oh, yes. This one's going to be good.
The Blazers in general and Damian Lillard specifically always get up for the Warriors. Always. In fact, Lillard takes Stephen Curry's status at the top of the point guard hierarchy as a personal affront. He'll do everything in his power to beat Curry every game of this series — and if he can top the two-time MVP once or twice, Portland might push the Warriors to the brink.
Houston Rockets vs. Oklahoma City Thunder
We need the NBA to move up the date of its award ceremony to just before this series tips off, so we can see how Russell Westbrook and James Harden would react to the announcement of the MVP award.
Barring such a change, this series still will be the best of the first round: two MVP candidates going head-to-head in a conflict of team styles, as the Rockets try to bury the Thunder in 3-pointers, and Oklahoma City attempts to burn Houston to the ground with the incendiary devastation known as Westbrook.
In the immortal words of Terrell Owens, get your popcorn ready.