FiveThirtyEight: How common was the Pelicans' sweep of the Trailblazers

Neil Paine looks back on the New Orleans Pelican's first round playoff sweep of the Portland Trailblazers and wonders how common it is for the underdog to sweep.
2:20 | 06/29/18

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Transcript for FiveThirtyEight: How common was the Pelicans' sweep of the Trailblazers
This think significant digit in the NBA is a that's because the New Orleans pelicans unexpected sweep of the Portland Trail Blazers ranked as the eight. Most unexpected four game sweep in NBA playoff history heading to playoffs the pelicans hadn't Ullah score 1588. According to 530 its historical power ratings. That's above average but not ruling anything special there opponents the Portland probably checked in at 1614. A 26 point gap should've been enough to prevent the underdog from sweeping this year's if that's exactly what the pelicans did making him only eight team in NBA history. To sweep an opponent that went into a series with the U low at least 26 points higher than there's so what happened. Well for one thing playoff Rondo happen. How could point guard Rajon Rondo outplayed his all star counterpart the union Willard and it wasn't really all that close in the series Rondo averaged 49% shooting eleven point three points per game in thirteen point three assists per game. All three of which were well above his regular season averages. On the other hand lowered had a very poor series by his standards. Although they outscored Rondo pouring in eighteen point five points per game he shot only 35% from the floor and averaged only four point eight assists per game. All well below his regular season numbers it wasn't just Ron who of course. The other half of the pelicans backward through holiday also thoroughly outplayed his counterpart in the blazers CJ McCollum. In looking beyond the backcourt New Orleans senator Anthony Davis averaged 33 points and twelve rebounds per game shooting 58% from the floor. Portland knew that Davis was going to be a handful going into the series but they hope to be able to offset his production. By racking up. Big margins with their backcourt of Willard McCall relative to holiday and Rondo when that fell apart Portland had very little chance to win the series. I'm next for the pelicans as a matchup against the defending NBA champion ballistic words and that means replacing the backcourt matchup against Willard and McCollum live. This blast Brothers at least once after it returns from injury plus Kevin Durant and all of the other many stars on the warriors. Good luck for the falcons win all of that. But I for the way the pelicans exceeded expectations against the blazers. Let's see if they could surprise us once again and then.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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