Drew League Playoffs Preview: Jonathan Baxter Division

The 2018 Drew League Playoffs are here.

Eight teams from each division—Jonathan Baxter and Christopher Baxter—will face off in a single elimination bracket this Friday and Saturday, with the second round continuing on Sunday. After that, only four teams will remain, to play in the semifinals and championship next weekend. This is it, do or die time. Remember: No Excuse. Just Produce.

Here’s the breakdown of the Jonathan Baxter division matchups:


Birdie’s Revenge (#1) vs. Reapers (#8)

This isn’t quite as lopsided as it looks. After all, the Reapers pushed the defending champs to the brink during their regular season matchup, and Birdie’s will be entering this matchup without their monster center Marcus Bell, after taking their first loss in nearly two whole seasons last Sunday. Birdie’s will be motivated for a bounce-back game, but may be outsized by the athletic Reapers, who are playing in their first playoffs. The winner will play the winner of the 4/5 matchup.

Hank’s Panthers (#4) vs. Redemption (#5)

A classic defense vs. offense matchup, this game finds the defensively-minded but offensively-limited Panthers battling the scintillating scorers of Redemption, who very nearly missed the playoffs due to a distinct disinterest on the defensive end (their close game against Birdie’s Revenge notwithstanding). The Panthers’ philosophy wound up proving that old adage about defense winning in their regular season matchup, but the playoffs are a whole different beast. Whichever team comes out on top will have to dig in to beat the winner of the 1/8 matchup.

Young Legends (#3) vs. Hometown Favorites (#6)

The Young Legends were one of the most shocking teams of the year. Packed with gritty, two-way vets, the Legends snuck up on a lot of good teams, including Hometown. By contrast, the Hometown Favorites were weirdly inconsistent, showing up with different lineups each week of the season. However, they were talented enough of to secure their 2-seed, so whichever version of this team shows up still stands a reasonable chance of unseating the Legends. The winner takes on the winner of the 2/7 matchup.

LAUNFD (#2) vs. No Shnacks (#7)

LAUNFD ran away with this matchup in June—without the monster lineup that ultimately ended Birdie’s Revenge’s 26-game winning streak. No Shnacks’ best chance will likely be to zero in on of LAU’s sharpshooters, keeping them off the 3-point line, or their postseason is sunk. The winner here will go on to try their luck against the winner of the 3/6 matchup.