In a shocking turn of events, Anthony Davis and the New Orleans Pelicans swept the Portland Trailblazers in the first round of the NBA playoffs. Technically underdogs, new orleans came into the playoffs on a hot streak, winning their last five games.

After DeMarcus Cousins went down, nobody expected the Pelicans to make the playoffs, let alone make it to the second round of the playoffs. Relying on the heroics of Anthony Davis and Jrue Holiday isn't always a recipe for success, but with the help of Nikola Mirotic's unaffected vision and the rejuvenation of playoff Rondo, they pushed Terry Stotts into another crisis of faith in Dame Time.

While the Blazers have been known to choke in the playoffs, the Warriors are the defending champs

Even without Stephen Curry at full strength, the Pelicans come into the series as major underdogs. While the outlook doesn't look bright, anything is possible in an NBA series. Just ask Kevin Garnett. It only takes one major injury for things to completely shift, as evidenced by the Curry injury. Here are three factors that could help the Pelicans potentially beat a vulnerable Warriors team.

1) The defense is as good advertised

Jrue Holiday and Rajon Rondo were able to shut down Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum in the first round. Lillard shot a horrendous 35% from the field during the series according to

This was primarily due to the heavy pressure Holiday applies.

If the pair can do the same to Klay and a less-than-healthy Curry, that leaves some unsavory matchups for the Warriors in other areas. Anthony Davis is one of the few people on this earth gifted enough to keep up with Kevin Durant, and nobody else on the Warriors really puts any pressure from a shooting perspective.

If the Pelicans can force Draymond Green, Shaun Livingston, and Andrew Iguodala into taking too many attempts, that takes the ball out of the hands of their best shooters. Let Nick Young take as many bombs as he wants.

2) They get good-to-great performances from their bench players

Davis, Holiday, Mirotic and Rondo are all averaging over 35 minutes per game in the playoffs.

New Orleans has no depth whatsoever. Ian Clark, Darius Miller, and Solomon Hill are going to have to come out as positives during their minutes on the court. I'm expecting Clark to have at least one "revenge" game, but the rest of the Pelicans bench has yet to prove their up to the task.

3) Anthony Davis has the series of his life

Davis averaged 33 points, 11.8 rebounds, 1.8 steals, and 2.8 blocks in round 1. He is verifiably a monster on the basketball court. But for the Pelicans to really have a real shot at this, he's probably going to have to somehow expand on those numbers. However, he's probably the only player other than LeBron James and Kevin Durant who is capable of doing it. Something like 35-15-2-3 seems insane but doable for a potential future MVP candidate.

Still, things don't look good for the Pels

Even if the above three things go the Pelicans way, it's unlikely they'll come out of this series on top. The Warriors are a dynasty in the making, and they still have the better team. Curry has a chance coming back in the first game of the series according to Marcus Thompson. This could easily be a four-game sweep that doesn't go in the Pelicans' favor.