Prior to Game 6 between the Toronto Raptors and the Brooklyn Nets, I was asked if I had a gut feeling about the outcome.
My immediate response, which I think is what defines a gut feeling, was to say that it was a tough call because there were so many factors to consider.
For one thing, the scores had been close in the first five games of the best-of-seven series, with the Raptors holding a narrow 487-483 advantage.
There was also a question in my mind as to how the matchups would play out. Would the Raptors be able to contain Joe Johnson, the shooting guard who was a major factor in erasing a 26-point deficit in Game 5? And how would the Nets respond to the playoff career-high 36 points that Kyle Lowry poured in to help the Raptors to a 3-2 series lead?
Even though I couldn’t commit to making a prediction for Game 6, I did have an opinion to share about the series in general. I said that I believed that the Raptors were the better team and I hoped they would be able to prove it by closing out the series.
Of course that did not turn out to be the case on Friday night at the Barclays Center. The Nets jumped all over the Raptors and built up a 19-point lead by halftime — a lead that was never seriously threatened as they tied up the series with a 97-83 victory.
While the Raptors suffered the worst loss by either team in the series, I’m confident that they will be able to bounce back on Sunday.
As such, here are five predictions for Game 7 that will tilt the result in favor of the Raptors.