It was predicted in these pages. Milwaukee Bucks vs. Phoenix Suns. This is not the NBA Finals most expected when the regular season started. But as the playoffs progressed and injury after injury hit contenders, this is what we have left.

And I think we will have a competitive Finals. For the record, I like Phoenix in seven games.

Milwaukee still has to prove it can overcome its demons of the past and win a big game or series. Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Bucks has to prove he can perform on the biggest stage, the NBA Finals. Phoenix has to prove its young players can stand the heat of playoff competition. Chris Paul of the Suns finally has a chance to win a championship before he heads to the Hall of Fame.

Devin Booker

Devin Booker

We will see new faces in this year’s Finals. No Lebron. No Curry. No Kawhi. No Durant. Joining Paul as first time visitors to the Finals are rising stars, Devin Booker, Giannis, Khris Middleton, and DeAndre Ayton.

The biggest question heading into the series has to be concerning Giannis and his knee injury. He is slated to play but will he be at 100 percent? He can absolutely swing the series: In the two games against the Suns this season, Antetokounmpo scored 80 total points.

Another question is who will Jrue Holiday off as Milwaukee guard. He is the best defender in the matchup and he can neutralize Paul or Booker.

The only way I see Milwaukee coming out on top is to make it’s three pointers and for Giannis to put up his MVP type numbers. Three pointers could be an issue as the Bucks are shooting just 31 percent from long range.

But I am sticking with Phoenix. I think Booker will outplay Gionnis and Middleton. A star will be born and the Suns will hoist the championship trophy.

Booker’s playmaking and shooting in the halfcourt is elite, and the nation will be introduced to his skills.