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NBA | Apr 17

Which NBA Star Is Under More Pressure Going into the Playoffs?

Tatum, Embiid, Harden, and Lillard Are Some NBA Stars That Hope to Leave Their Playoffs Ghosts Behind

These Stars Are About to Feel the Heat of the NBA Playoffs
Jayson Tatum #0 of the Boston Celtics/Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images/AFP

Pressure on Stars Without Rings

If Boston can’t reach the NBA Finals, that’s going to look really bad on Tatum…

The NBA playoffs are almost set and the most exciting part of the basketball season is about to kick off. However, this time of year isn’t exciting for every player. There is tangible pressure on a number of stars to make deep playoff runs.

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Perhaps more so than any other sport, individual greatness in the NBA is often measured by how many championships you’ve won. There are a lot of players who could seriously help their legacy if they’re able to win a ring this year. We’re going to go through some players who are under the most pressure to win this year.

 

Who Needs to Win a Ring the Most?

The player under the most pressure to win the championship this year is Jayson Tatum and it’s not close. Everything has gone right for the Boston Celtics this year. The Eastern Conference is shitty and the Celtics have a stacked roster. If Boston can’t reach the NBA Finals, that’s going to look really bad on Tatum.

People have been apprehensive to put him in the best player alive conversation and that’s because he hasn’t been able to get it done on the biggest stage. If he leads the Celtics to a championship this year, he’ll be getting a lot more respect in the NBA news cycle.

Joel Embiid missed 43 NBA games this season due to an injury so he has a built-in excuse if the Philadelphia 76ers don’t go on a deep playoff run. However, I still think there’s some pressure. He’s not getting any younger and the Eastern Conference is very weak.

There’s a good chance Philadelphia plays Boston in the first round. This is the time when legendary players make themselves known so Embiid coming off of an injury and upsetting the No. 1 seed would be massive for his legacy.

 

Misunderstood Stars

Damian Lillard and James Harden may not be the top players on their teams anymore but there’s still pressure on them. Neither has been able to get it done in the playoffs and are on stacked teams. Harden has a difficult path as the Western Conference is brutal this year. The Clippers need a deep playoff run and Harden needs to play well. If he stinks like he has in the past, NBA rumors won’t be kind to him.

Lillard forced the Trail Blazers to trade him in the offseason and it’s been a rough season for the Milwaukee Bucks. If the team gets knocked out early, Lillard could be on the move once again.

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