Tag Archives: 1st round

0.9 seconds to heartbreak.

“It’s over.”

“I cannot believe it was all over.” 

“Just like that, I’m screwed!”

In that kind of fashion, and way too early than I thought it would and I was not there to see it all. I was away from the buzz of the metropolis. I went to a place with no television screens and computers. All I had, was my phone and went browsing using the mobile internet out of insistence that I cannot miss this game no matter where I am. For after all, the season was on the line. A win would send this series to a 7th game, a loss would send my team home for the early offseason.

I did not saw the shot. As I saw each time I reload the NBA Game Time App just to see the score change every time. When it all mattered, 0.9 seconds was all it took from watching my team play a Game 7 today to right now with compelling thoughts on what just happened to my team.

In 0.9 seconds, it was all over. The 2013-14 Houston Rockets season is nothing but history. I did not see what happened afterwards at the Moda Center on the TV screen. I did not  saw the euphoric Portland crowd erupt with joy happiness as their Trail Blazers moved on to the second round of the NBA Playoffs for the first time since 2000. 14 years of heartbreak for them finally ended. I did not saw the words their hero said to one of our guys after the game. I did not saw the whole team get down on their knees in sadness amidst the celebrations. Just like that, I’m a screwed fan.

I saw two scenes on social media, after the game. I kept the lines open even with the loss. Amidst the sadness I was experiencing as a fan.

On one side, people celebrating the Blazers win in that kind of fashion and saying the name of the hero who propelled the team into the second round. People who were glad and ecstatic to see the Rockets season come to an end all for different reasons. Like seeing a guy on the team fall short on the playoffs after his controversial move or the thought they do not like the team in the first place. Some would go out and post/tag me on my wall about what happened like my team got owned/upset, videos of other Rockets fan reactions on the loss and pictures of the game.  

I would not bother myself watching these things. But, I’ll keep it on my wall. Because someday it has it’s purpose. There is a good reason for me to keep it.

Then on the other side, were those who supported the team. The Red Nation! The people who were passionate about the team. Some of them, which I met in the last playoffs that have been fans of the team longer than I am. It was a mutual feeling throughout. Everyone was shocked and saddened with those 0.9 seconds that ended the season for the team we all love and die to root for. None of us thought our season will be ending early. Unfortunately, the basketball gods gave us the heartbreaking truth of not having to witness our team play forward for the season. But without them, I would be all alone in the healing process from this heartbreak. Something I have experienced for most of my years as a fan of the team.

We are all entitled to our own opinions and which teams to root for. You can root for a team that has a documented history and lore. You can root for a team because your favorite player is playing for it. You can root for a team for a lot of other reasons. We have our teams to root for with every season or for the long-term. Sometimes, that passion can lead us to crossing the line on those we trample with whenever our team wins against another team.

It just so happened in my case, I chose a team that did not have a large following in this country. Even with the player changes, the following was growing slowly but still smaller than other followings. I can count my fingers on my friends here who are as passionate to the team as I am. It was a weird feeling when I watched the team play in October last year for the pre-season. The crowd at hand was jeering one guy of the team, while they’re cheering the other guy who was his teammate. I had a thought, how many of these people in attendance were die-hard fans like me? I’m sure most of them came just to be a part of history. To be witness to the first NBA-sanctioned game in the Philippines. I’m sure most of them want another team playing. A team that has a huge following in this country. I can’t blame them for it for we know that this country is more passionate about this sport than any other place on the planet (take Lithuania with us also).

Now, if someone asks me “Are you gonna watch the rest of the Playoffs?”. Well, I will do my own best to keep updated with what’s happening. One thing is for sure though. I would not root for any other team still playing in this playoffs. I could care less, if one team gets the three-peat, or another team getting back on top of the mountain after a bitter loss last season, or another team driven by not just a city but an entire state to their first professional title, or a team whom we least expect to win it all shock the world and pull off a magical run. It’s going to be tough for me to watch a game from here on out until the season comes to an end with the NBA Finals next month.

Just like that, the “our” season is over. The most compelling season I have witnessed in my 12 years as a member of Red Nation is nothing but over. The team admitted on their page that they fell short of the fan base expectations. What most of us who believed, thought would be the rise of the team would turn out to be the collapse of biblical proportions. No one saw we’d go down in Round 1 of the playoffs. Yet we did in a fashion no one saw coming.

Even with all the heartbreak and sorrow, I’m still proud of what I stand for. I will always believe in the team that I have passionately rooted for more than half of my life so far. There will be journeys ahead with this team. Time will eventually heal all the wounds and heartbreaks I am having right now. I have learned a lot of things with every year that passed. I went through good times and experienced plenty of heartbreaks along the way.

It will be a long and cold wait until the next season begins. But, I always believe that one day, this team will raise the championship and I along with everyone in Red Nation will be witness to it.

Regardless, of what the people around me say. And the fact I’m 13,744 km (8,540 mi) away from Houston. My blood is RED, and I’m a member of Red Nation for Life from the Philippines!

Thank You for another season Houston Rockets!
K-Smoove

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Bulls survive Nets comeback push.

In the only first round series that went to seven games, the fifth seeded Chicago Bulls survive a comeback run by the fourth seeded Brooklyn Nets. Thisafter the Bulls go up 3-1 in the series, they allowed the Nets to come back and force a 7th game on the Nets’ home floor. However, the Bulls sealed the series on the road to advance to the second round.

 Photos ©NBA
 
The Nets had a great first season since they moved from the Garden State of New Jersey to the New York City borough despite going through a coaching change during the middle of the season as Avery Johnson who led the Nets to a great start, faltered afterwards and was fired thus opening the door to PJ Carlesimo to call the shots for the Nets for the rest of the season. Brook Lopez had an All-Star year for the Nets, this despite Deron Williams having a rough season. Also helping the Nets cause are Gerald Wallace, Joe Johnson, Kris Humphries, CJ Watson and Andray Blatche to name some. The Nets took the opening game of the series. They lost the next three, but fought back to even the series and force a 7th game on their home floor. But their comeback bid came up short as their first season in Brooklyn ends in a tough home defeat.
 
As for the Bulls, they played all season long without their superstar Derrick Rose who was cleared by his doctors to play as early as January after his rehabilitation from the torn ACL he suffered in last year’s playoffs. Despite not having Rose on the floor, the Bulls kept themselves competitive led by All-Stars Luol Deng and Joakim Noah as well as Carlos Boozer. Outside of the frontcourt trio, they have Nate Robinson, Kirk Hinrich, Jimmy Butler, Taj Gibson and Marco Belinelli to name some. They survived a comeback bid in this round as they went up 3-1 but lost the next two to set up a seventh and decisive game which they won on the road. It is still unclear if Rose will come to play in the next series, but the Bulls need to push themselves more in order to keep their playoff push alive.
 
The Bulls will face the defending NBA champions Miami Heat in the second round who are well rested after their sweep of the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round.
 
As for the Nets, they will look back on this series and the question on whether their head coach PJ Carlesimo will be back full time to call the shots next season, but as they say pro sports in Brooklyn is back.
 
Here are the scores from all games of the series:
 
Game 1 @ Brooklyn: Bulls 89-106 Nets
 
Bulls leaders:
Points: Boozer 25, Robinson 17, Butler 13, Belinelli 13
Rebounds: Boozer 8, Gibson 7, Noah 5
Assists: Boozer 4, Deng 3
 
Nets leaders:
Points: Williams 22, Lopez 21, Johnson 16
Rebounds: Evans 13, Wallace 6, Lopez 5
Assists: Williams 7, Johnson 4

Game 2 @ Brooklyn: Bulls 90-82 Nets

Bulls leaders:

Points: Deng 15, Boozer 13, Hinrich 13
Rebounds: Boozer 12, Deng 10, Noah 10
Assists: Hinrich 5, Deng 4, Noah 3
 
Nets leaders:
Points: Lopez 21, Johnson 17, Watson 10
Rebounds: Evans 8, Blatche 7, Lopez 5, Humphries 5
Assists: Williams 10, Watson 5, Johnson 4

Game 3 @ Chicago: Nets 76-79 Bulls

Nets leaders:
Points: Lopez 22, Williams 18, Johnson 15
Rebounds: Evans 12, Lopez 9, Wallace 4
Assists: Williams 4, Johnson 3, Watson 3

Bulls leaders:
Points: Boozer 22, Deng 21, Hinrich 12
Rebounds: Boozer 16, Deng 10, Noah 8

Assists: Boozer 3, Deng 3

Game 4 @ Chicago: Nets 134-142 Bulls (3OT)

Nets leaders:
Points: Williams 32, Lopez 26, Johnson 22
Rebounds: Evans 13, Lopez 11, Wallace 9

Assists: Williams 10, Wallace 4, Blatche 3, Watson 3

Bulls leaders:
Points: Robinson 34, Boozer 21, Hinrich 18
Rebounds: Noah 13, Boozer 8, Deng 8
Assists: Hinrich 14, Deng 6, Robinson 4

Game 5 @ Brooklyn: Bulls 91-110 Nets

Bulls leaders:
Points: Robinson 20, Butler 18, Deng 12

Rebounds: Boozer 10, Deng 8, Noah 4, Mohammed 4
Assists: Robinson 8, Butler 3, Deng 3

Nets leaders:
Points: Lopez 28, Williams 23, Blatche 13
Rebounds: Evans 12, Lopez 10, Humphries 6

Assists: Williams 10, Wallace 3, Lopez 2

Game 6 @ Chicago: Nets 95-92 Bulls

Nets leaders:
Points: Lopez 17, Johnson 17, Williams 17
Rebounds: Evans 15, Blatche 7, Humphries 4
Assists: Williams 11, Johnson 4, Wallace 3

Bulls leaders:
Points: Belinelli 22, Robinson 18, Butler 17
Rebounds: Noah 15, Boozer 13, Butler 7
Assists: Belinelli 7, Butler 6, Noah 5

Game 7 @ Brooklyn: Bulls 99-93 Nets

Bulls leaders:
Points: Noah 24, Belinelli 24, Boozer 17
Rebounds: Noah 14, Boozer 7, Belinelli 6
Assists: Butler 4, Robinson 4, Teague 3, Cook 3

Nets leaders:
Points: Williams 24, Lopez 21, Wallace 19
Rebounds: Evans 13, Lopez 9, Williams 6
Assists: Williams 7, Wallace 5, Blatche 4

Bulls win series 4-3

K-Smoove

West champs survive Rockets scare.

Two of the youngest teams in the NBA went to war as the top seed in the West and the reigning Western Conference Champions Oklahoma City Thunder survive a late push by the eight seeded Houston Rockets after a series which saw the Thunder up 3-0, the Rockets winning two straight before the Thunder wrapped them up in six games on the road.

Photos ©NBA
 
The Rockets came into the season as the youngest team in the NBA with the players averaging 25 years of age. They also underwent a major roster overhaul during the off-season and during the regular season itself. Coming into the playoffs, Only two players remained from the Rockets roster last year. Chandler Parsons who have stepped up big during his sophomore campaign this season and Greg Smith who have become servicable throughout the season. Talking more about the major overhaul, they brought in a big fish in James Harden who has turned himself from a sixth man in Oklahoma City to the face of the Rockets franchise. They also brought in Jeremy Lin coming off from his Linsanity days in New York. As well as other players like Omer Asik, Carlos Delfino, Francisco Garcia, Aaron Brooks (Brooks, a relic from the Rockets’ last playoff run in 2009) and Patrick Beverley. Down 0-3 in the series, everyone else thought it would end in a sweep. However, they pushed the series to six games before bowing out at home in Game 6.
 
As for the Thunder, who are gunning for a season of redemption after losing to the Heat in the NBA Finals last season, their road back to the Finals hit a roadblock during this series as their spark plug All-Star point guard in Russell Westbrook went down with an injury after Game 2 that put him out of commission for the rest of the playoffs. Now, the focus is now on Kevin Durant who scored well in the series and is the leading scorer in this year’s playoffs so far. But Durant can’t do it alone, he must find other options on offense. Players like Serge Ibaka, Kevin Martin, Reggie Jackson and Derek Fisher should step up offensively if the Thunder would have a shot on winning the championship. Aside from the usual defensive presence of Ibaka, Kendrick Perkins, Thabo Sefolosha and Nick Collison. The Thunder may have survived this series, but their road to redemption will get tougher with each game that come along.
 
The Thunder will face the fifth seeded Memphis Grizzlies who stunned the Los Angeles Clippers in six games setting up a rematch between the two teams in the second round who last fought in 2011.
 
As for the Rockets, though their season ended in a bitter defeat, with a lot of cap space this off-season, the future looks bright for these “Youngbloods” as they will look to catch another big fish come the off-season, and work on the development of their young but already potent team. Watch out for them to make a ton of noise come next season.

Now here are the scores from all games of the series:

Game 1 @ Oklahoma City: Rockets 91-120 Thunder

Rockets leaders:

Points: Harden 20, Beverley 11, Delfino 10
Rebounds: Jones 8, Asik 7, Harden 6
Assists: Lin 4, Beverley 4, Brooks 3

Thunder leaders:

Points: Durant 24, Westbrook 19, Ibaka 17
Rebounds: Westbrook 8, Ibaka 7, Durant 6
Assists: Westbrook 10, Durant 4, Jackson 4, Collison 4

Game 2 @ Oklahoma City: Rockets 102-105 Thunder

Rockets leaders:

Points: Harden 36, Parsons 17, Beverley 16
Rebounds: Asik 14, Beverley 12, Harden 11
Assists:Harden 6, Beverley 6, Lin 3

Thunder leaders:
Points: Durant 29, Westbrook 29, Ibaka 12

Rebounds: Ibaka 11, Sefolosha 7, Perkins 6
Assists: Durant 9, Westbrook 4, Jackson 3
 
Game 3 @ Houston: Thunder 104-101 Rockets

Thunder leaders:

Points: Durant 41, Ibaka 17, Jackson 14
Rebounds: Durant 14, Ibaka 11, Sefolosha 9
Assists: Durant 4, Jackson 3, Martin 3

Rockets leaders:

Points: Harden 30, Parsons 21, Garcia 18
Rebounds: Harden 8, Asik 8, Parsons 7, Jones 7
Assists: Parsons 7, Harden 6, Delfino 4
 
Game 4 @ Houston: Thunder 103-105 Rockets
 
Thunder leaders:
Points: Durant 38, Jackson 18, Martin 16
Rebounds: Durant 8, Collison 6, Ibaka 5, Liggins 5
Assists: Durant 6, Jackson 3

Rockets leaders:

Points: Parsons 27, Asik 17, Beverley 16
Rebounds: Asik 14, Parsons 10, Beverley 4, Delfino 4
Assists: Parsons 8, Harden 3, Beverley 3, Delfino 3
 
Game 5 @ Oklahoma City: Rockets 107-100 Thunder

Rockets leaders:
Points: Harden 31, Asik 21, Garcia 18
Rebounds: Asik 11, Harden 8, Beverley 8
Assists: Parsons 4, Garcia 3, Harden 3, Brooks 3
 
Thunder leaders:
Points: Durant 36, Jackson 20, Ibaka 14
Rebounds: Ibaka 9, Sefolosha 8, Durant 7
Assists: Durant 7, Sefolosha 6, Jackson 3
 
Game 6 @ Houston: Thunder 103-94 Rockets
 
Thunder leaders:
Points: Durant 27, Martin 25, Jackson 17
Rebounds: Collison 9, Durant 8, Jackson 7, Ibaka 7
Assists: Jackson 8, Durant 6, Martin 3

Rockets leaders:

Points: Harden 26, Parsons 25, Asik 13
Rebounds: Asik 13, Parsons 7, Harden 6, Garcia 6
Assists: Harden 7, Garcia 5, Parsons 3
 
Thunder win series 4-2
 
K-Smoove

Grizzlies "Grit-n-Grind" themselves to Round 2.

In a battle of two contrasting styles, the “Grit-n-Grind” fifth seeded Memphis Grizzlies advance to the second round after knocking out the team that knocked them out of the first round last season, the fourth-seeded Los Angeles Clippers as a second team playing at the Staples Center bows out of the first round this season.

Photos ©NBA
 
The Clippers finished a franchise season as they won the Pacific Division title for the first time in franchise history and had their best winning season in franchise history. Led by the Lob City duo of Chris Paul and Blake Griffin, the Clippers were poised on following up their nice playoff run from last season. Joining the duo are Jamal Crawford, DeAndre Jordan, Caron Butler, Chauncey Billups, Matt Barnes, Ryan Hollins and Eric Bledsoe to name some. The Clippers looked good when they won the first two games at home including a Paul game winner in Game 2. However, the series went down for them afterwards as they lost the next four games (including one at home) to drop the series and ending a promising season for these men from Lob City.

The Grizzlies haven’t missed a beat, even after trading away their star forward in Rudy Gay to the Raptors during the season. In fact, they have played better without Gay as the main focus went to their big men in Zach Randolph who had an All-Star worthy season for the Grizzlies and Marc Gasol who won the Defensive Player of the Year this season and putting up All-star numbers. They also had a big spark from Mike Conley who has been vital in running the “Grit-n-Grind” offense. The players the got in the Gay trade like veteran Tayshaun Prince and Ed Davis made their impact on this Grizzlies team. As well as players like Tony Allen, Jerryd Bayless, Darrell Arthur and Quincy Pondexter. Now, these “Grit-n’-Grind” Grizzlies continue their chase for a shot at the championship this season.
 
The Grizzlies will face the top seeded team in the West, the Oklahoma City Thunder who survived against the eight seeded Houston Rockets after being up 3-0 in the series and allowing the Rockets to take two games afterwards before the Thunder finally wrapped them up in six games. Thus, it sets up a rematch of their 2nd round battle in 2011.
 
As for the Clippers, it was a bitter finish to a promising year. In one of those seasons where they came up better than their Staples co-tentants. The spotlight will be on their head coach Vinny del Negro, whether or not he’ll continue to coach the Clippers or someone else would come and coach these men from Lob City.
 
Here are the scores from all games of the series:
 
Game 1 @ Los Angeles: Grizzlies 91-112 Clippers

Grizzlies leaders:
Points: Bayless 19, Gasol 16, Randolph 13
Rebounds: Davis 6, Randolph 4, Prince 4
Assists: Gasol 7, Conley 5, Bayless 3, Prince 3
 
Clippers leaders:
Points: Paul 23, Billups 14, Crawford 13, Butler 13
Rebounds: Jordan 8, Butler 7, Odom 7, Griffin 5
Assists: Paul 7, Bledsoe 4, Griffin 3, Odom 3

Game 2 @ Los Angeles: Grizzlies 91-93 Clippers

Grizzlies leaders:
Points: Conley 28, Gasol 17, Allen 16
Rebounds: Allen 10, Randolph 8, Gasol 7
Assists: Conley 9, Gasol 2, Bayless 2
 
Clippers leaders:
Points: Paul 24, Griffin 21, Crawford 15
Rebounds: Griffin 8, Jordan 8, Odom 5
Assists: Paul 9, Griffin 4, Odom 2
 
Game 3 @ Memphis: Clippers 82-94 Grizzlies
 
Clippers leaders:
Points: Griffin 16, Barnes 12, Billups 11
Rebounds: Jordan 8, Paul 6, Hollins 4
Assists: Paul 4, Crawford 3, Bledsoe 3

Grizzlies leaders:
Points: Randolph 27, Gasol 16, Allen 13, Pondexter 13

Rebounds: Randolph 11, Allen 9, Gasol 8
Assists: Conley 10, Randolph 2, Gasol 2
 
Game 4 @ Memphis: Clippers 83-104 Grizzlies

Clippers leaders:

Points: Paul 19, Griffin 19, Crawford 12
Rebounds: Griffin 10, Odom 3
Assists: Paul 6, Bledsoe 5, Griffin 2

Grizzlies leaders:
Points: Randolph 24, Gasol 24, Prince 15, Conley 15

Rebounds: Gasol 13, Randolph 9, Prince 6
Assists: Conley 13, Gasol 4, Prince 3

Game 5 @ Los Angeles: Grizzlies 103-93 Clippers

Grizzlies leaders:
Points: Randolph 25, Gasol 21, Conley 20

Rebounds: Randolph 11, Gasol 8, Allen 8
Assists: Conley 6, Allen 4, Gasol 4
 
Clippers leaders:
Points: Paul 35, Crawford 15, Bledsoe 7
Rebounds: Barnes 9, Jordan 8, Paul 5
Assists: Griffin 5, Paul 4, Crawford 3
 
Game 6 @ Memphis: Clippers 105-118 Grizzlies
 
Clippers leaders:
Points: Barnes 30, Paul 28, Butler 14
Rebounds: Barnes 10, Jordan 4, Paul 4, Hill 4
Assists: Paul 8, Bledsoe 3
 
Grizzlies leaders:
Points: Randolph 23, Conley 23, Allen 19
Rebounds: Gasol 7, Allen 7, Prince 6
Assists: Conley 7, Allen 6, Prince 5

Grizzlies win series 4-2

K-Smoove

Knicks survive emotional Celtics rally.

In a emotional battle between two rival cities, the second seeded New York Knicks survive a comeback push by the seventh seeded Boston Celtics who came back to won two games after trailing the series 0-3. The Knicks would take the series in six games and advance to the second round for the first time since 2000.

Photos ©NBA
 
The Celtics managed to come back to the playoffs despite losing their superstar point guard in Rajon Rondo to a season-ending foot injury. Led by their trusted veterans in Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett, the Celtics keep themselves above the win column despite getting hit by the injury bug all season long. They also got big contributions from Jason Terry, Jeff Green, Brandon Bass and Avery Bradley all season long. They were down 0-3 in the series and managed to put the Knicks on the brink of a 7th and decisive game back in New York. They trailed by 20 points in the 4th quarter and managed to bring the lead down to four. But the Knicks, made all the stops in the final three minutes of the game to seal the series. Despite bowing out in the series, the Celtics fought with a lot of heart and determination especially coming off the Boston Marathon tragedy which is well appreciated by any NBA fan.
 
The Knicks, led by the new scoring champion Carmelo Anthony won the Atlantic Division title for the first time since 1994. They showed their dominance in this series by going out with three straight wins on the Celtics, before the Celtics won two straight to extend the series before bowing out in Game 6. Anthony is backed up well by J.R. Smith, Tyson Chandler, Raymond Felton, Steve Novak and the rest of the Knicks roster who have been playing great basketball in the Big Apple. The Knicks now continue their run back into contending for a championship come June.
 
The Knicks will face the third seeded Indiana Pacers in the second round who wrapped up the sixth seeded Atlanta Hawks in similar fashion. Setting up a rebirth of a classic Eastern Conference rivalry.
 
As for the Celtics, question now looms on whether Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett on whether they will cap off their careers in Boston together with the returning Rajon Rondo or move elsewhere to finish their illustrious Hall of Fame worthy careers.
 
Now here are the scores from all games of the series:
 
Game 1 @ New York: Celtics 78-85 Knicks
 
Celtics leaders:
Points: Green 26, Pierce 21, Bradley 15
Rebounds: Bass 10, Garnett 9, Green 7
Assists: Pierce 7, Bradley 4, Garnett 3
 
Knicks leaders:
Points: Anthony 36, Smith 15, Felton 13
Rebounds: Martin 9, Anthony 6, Chandler 5, Smith 5, Shumpert 5, Kidd 5
Assists: Felton 6, Kidd 3, Shumpert 3
 
Game 2 @ New York: Celtics 71-87 Knicks
 
Celtics leaders:
Points: Pierce 18, Garnett 12, Green 10, Crawford 10
Rebounds: Garnett 11, Bass 10, Pierce 6
Assists: Pierce 6, Terry 3, Bradley 2
 
Knicks leaders:
Points: Anthony 34, Smith 19, Felton 16
Rebounds: Martin 11, Felton 7, Kidd 6
Assists: Prigioni 5, Felton 2, Kidd 2, Martin 2
 
Game 3 @ Boston: Knicks 90-76 Celtics
 
Knicks leaders:
Points: Anthony 26, Smith 15, Felton 15
Rebounds: Chandler 8, Shumpert 8, Kidd 6
Assists: Felton 10, Kidd 6, Smith 3
 
Celtics leaders:
Points: Green 21, Pierce 17, Terry 14
Rebounds: Garnett 17, Green 9, Bass 7
Assists: Pierce 5, Green 4, Garnett 2, Terry 2
 
Game 4 @ Boston: Knicks 90-97 Celtics (OT)
 
Knicks leaders:
Points: Anthony 36, Felton 27, Shumpert 12
Rebounds: Shumpert 12, Chandler 11, Kidd 9
Assists: Felton 3, Anthony 2, Prigioni 2, Kidd 2
 
Celtics leaders:
Points: Pierce 29, Green 26, Terry 18
Rebounds: Garnett 17, Pierce 8, Green 6
Assists: Pierce 6, Garnett 6, Terry 4
 
Game 5 @ New York: Celtics 92-86 Knicks
 
Celtics leaders:
Points: Green 18, Terry 17, Bass 17, Pierce 16, Garnett 16
Rebounds: Garnett 18, Bass 5
Assists: Garnett 5, Green 4
 
Knicks leaders:
Points: Anthony 22, Felton 21, Smith 14
Rebounds: Chandler 11, Anthony 7, Shumpert 6, Felton 6
Assists: Felton 4, Anthony 2, Chandler 2, Smith 2
 
Game 6 @ Boston: Knicks 88-80 Celtics

Knicks leaders:
Points: Anthony 21, Shumpert 17, Prigioni 14
Rebounds: Chandler 12, Anthony 7, Smith 7
Assists: Felton 7, Anthony 5, Prigioni 3
 
Knicks win series 4-2
 
K-Smoove

Pacers advance to Round 2 for 2nd straight year.

In a series full of double-digit victories, the third seeded Indiana Pacers wrapped up the sixth seeded Atlanta Hawks in six gamesto advance to the second round for the second straight season.

Photos ©NBA
 
The Hawks returned to the playoffs for the sixth straight season, that is after they lost one of their main men in Joe Johnson through a trade with the Nets. They were led by Josh Smith who should have been an All-Star this season if not for his off-court troubles. Al Horford had another great season in a Hawks uniform. While Jeff Teague had a career year. They also got help from Kyle Korver, Deshawn Stevenson, Ivan Johnson to name some. They fought their hearts out especially coming back in Game 6 from a huge deficit, but they eventually came up short on their home floor.
 
As for the Pacers, they won the Central Division title for the first time since 2004 despite losing their main man from their last playoff run Danny Granger to injuries which kept him out for most of the season. With Granger’s absence, Paul George stepped up his game leading to a All-Star season for him. Together with David West, George Hill, Roy Hibbert, Lance Stephenson and DJ Augustin. The Pacers turned around a bad start to their season as they were able to get back in third place in the Eastern Conference standings. Now, they’ll be back in the second round as their playoff run to prove continues.
 
The Pacers will now face the second seeded New York Knicks who wrapped up the seventh seeded Boston Celtics in similar fashion as the Pacers setting up a rebirth between these two fierce rivals from the 1990’s.
 
As for the Hawks, the spotlight is now on Josh Smith who is a free agent this offseason, will he stay in his hometown team or move to another team for next season? A lot of uncertainty lies in “The Highlight Factory” this off-season.
 
Now here are the scores from all games of the series:
 
Game 1 @ Indiana: Hawks 90-107 Pacers
 
Hawks leaders:
Points: Teague 21, Smith 15, Horford 14
Rebounds: Smith 8, Horford 6, Johnson 5
Assists: Teague 7, Smith 5, Horford 3, Mack 3
 
Pacers leaders:
Points: George 23, Hill 18, Hibbert 16
Rebounds: George 11, West 9, Hibbert 8
Assists: George 12, Stephenson 4
 
Game 2 @ Indiana: Hawks 98-113 Pacers
 
Hawks leaders:
Points: Harris 17, Smith 16, Teague 16
Rebounds: Horford 10, Smith 6, Stevenson 5
Assists: Horford 5, Teague 5, Harris 4
 
Pacers leaders:
Points: George 27, Hill 22, Hibbert 15, Green 15
Rebounds: Hibbert 9, George 8, Pendergraph 7
Assists: George 3, West 3, Hibbert 3, Hill 3, Augustin 3
 
Game 3 @ Atlanta: Pacers 69-90 Hawks

Pacers leaders:
Points: West 18, George 16, Green 10
Rebounds: George 9, Hibbert 9, Hansbrough 9
Assists: Hill 3, Stephenson 2, West 2
 
Hawks leaders:
Points: Horford 26, Smith 14, Teague 13
Rebounds: Horford 16, Johnson 7, Smith 6, Teague 6
Assists: Smith 6, Teague 5, Harris 4
 
Game 4 @ Atlanta: Pacers 91-102 Hawks
 
Pacers leaders:
Points: George 21, West 15, Hibbert 14
Rebounds: George 12, Stephenson 9, Hibbert 7
Assists: Stephenson 8, Hill 6
 
Hawks leaders:
Points: Smith 29, Korver 19, Horford 18
Rebounds: Smith 11, Petro 8, Horford 5, Harris 5, Korver 5, Johnson 5
Assists: Teague 6, Harris 6, Smith 4, Horford 4
 
Game 5 @ Indiana: Hawks 83-106 Pacers
 
Hawks leaders:
Points: Smith 14, Horford 14, Harris 13
Rebounds: Horford 9, Smith 5, Korver 5
Assists: Teague 5, Harris 3, Horford 2
 
Pacers leaders:
Points: West 24, George 21, Hibbert 18
Rebounds: Stephenson 12, George 10, Hibbert 9
Assists: Hill 10, George 5, Stephenson 4
 
Game 6 @ Atlanta: Pacers 81-73 Hawks
 
Pacers leaders:
Points: West 21, Hill 21, Hibbert 17
Rebounds: Hibbert 11, Stephenson 11, West 8
Assists: George 7, Stephenson 6
 
Hawks leaders:
Points: Horford 15, Smith 14, Harris 14
Rebounds: Smith 9, Horford 7, Petro 6
Assists: Smith 3, Horford 3, Teague 3
 
Pacers win series 4-2
 
K-Smoove

Warriors win the high-octane wars.

In a battle of two highoctane teams. TheYoungbloods” prevailed as the sixth seeded Golden State Warriors pull off a stunning first round victory against the athletic and tall third seeded Denver Nuggets in six thrilling games to advance to the second round.

 Photos ©NBA
The Nuggets had a great regular season where they finished with a franchise best 57 wins in the season. However, they suffered a big loss before the start of the playoffs when Danilo Gallinari suffered a season-ending injury. The Nuggets showed their athleticism and their experience advantage over the Warriors all series long. As well as their huge depth with players like Ty Lawson, Andre Iguodala, Kenneth Faried, Wilson Chandler, Andre Miller and JaVale McGee. They won two games in this series, one on a Andre Miller game-winner in Game 1, and pushed the series to a Game 6 with a win in Game 5 at home. Unfortunately, they were unable to take advantage in full of their strengths of their Warriors as one of their best seasons in franchise history ends in bitter defeat.
The Warriors used their high octane offense to their advantage led by their “Splash Brothers” duo of Stephen Curry who is the 4th best scorer in the NBA Playoffs and Klay Thompson. They also withstand the loss of David Lee for most of the series after he suffered an injury in Game 1. Lee, came back to play a few minutes in Game 6. Outside of Curry, the Warriors got big contributions from Andrew Bogut, Harrison Barnes, Carl Landry, Jarrett Jack and Draymond Green throughout the series. They won all three home games as well as Game 2 in Denver. Now these Warriors from the Bay Area are ready to bring their all on to the next round.
The Warriors will now face the second seeded San Antonio Spurs in the second round who have been resting since their sweep of the Lakers in the first round.
 
As for the Nuggets, they suffered another first round exit. Now it’s a matter of how will they improve come next season, and could we see some changes in personnel along the way? That we will have to see as their off-season begins now.
 
Now here are the scores from all games of the series:
 
GAME 1 @ Denver: Warriors 95-97 Nuggets
Warriors leaders:
Points: Thompson 22, Curry 19, Landry 14
Rebounds: Bogut 12, Lee 12, Jack 8
Assists: Jack 10, Curry 9, Bogut 3
Nuggets leaders:
Points: Miller 28, Lawson 12, Chandler 11, Fournier 11
Rebounds: Chandler 13, Iguodala 10, Koufos 7
Assists: Miller 5, Iguodala 5, Lawson 4
GAME 2 @ Denver: Warriors 131-117 Nuggets
Warriors leaders:
Points: Curry 30, Jack 26, Barnes 24
Rebounds: Bogut 8, Barnes 6, Curry 5
Assists: Curry 13, Jack 7, Thompson 2, Barnes 2
 
Nuggets leaders:
Points: Lawson 19, Brewer 19, Iguodala 18, Miller 18
Rebounds: Chandler 6, Miller 5, Iguodala 4
Assists: Lawson 12, Iguodala 7, Miller 5
GAME 3 @ Golden State: Nuggets 108-110 Warriors

Nuggets leaders:
Points: Lawson 35, Brewer 16, Faried 15
Rebounds: Chandler 9, Faried 7, Iguodala 5
Assists: Lawson 10, Iguodala 5, Miller 4
 
Warriors leaders:
Points: Curry 29, Jack 23, Barnes 19, Landry 19
Rebounds: Bogut 9, Barnes 7, Jack 5, Landry 5, Green 5
Assists: Curry 11, Jack 7
 
GAME 4 @ Golden State: Nuggets 101-115 Warriors
 
Nuggets leaders:
Points: Lawson 26, Iguodala 19, Brewer 14
Rebounds: Faried 12, Iguodala 8
Assists: Lawson 6, Chandler 3, Iguodala 2
 
Warriors leaders:
Points: Curry 31, Jack 21, Landry 17
Rebounds: Green 6, Bogut 5, Jack 5
Assists: Jack 9, Curry 7, Thompson 5
 
GAME 5 @ Denver: Warriors 100-107 Nuggets
 
Warriors leaders:
Points: Barnes 23, Jack 20, Thompson 19
Rebounds: Barnes 9, Jack 6, Thompson 6
Assists: Curry 8, Jack 5, Green 3
 
Nuggets leaders:
Points: Iguodala 25, Lawson 19, Chandler 19
Rebounds: Iguodala 12, Faried 10, McGee 8
Assists: Lawson 10, Iguodala 7, Miller 5
 
GAME 6 @ Golden State: Nuggets 88-92 Warriors
 
Nuggets leaders:
Points: Iguodala 24, Lawson 17, Chandler 11, Faried 11
Rebounds: Faried 11, McGee 10, Iguodala 9
Asssists: Iguodala 6, Lawson 6, Chandler 3, Miller 3
 
Warriors leaders:
Points: Curry 22, Green 16, Bogut 14
Rebounds: Bogut 21, Green 10, Barnes 5, Landry 5, Curry 5
Assists: Curry 8, Jack 4, Bogut 3
 
Warriors win series 4-2
 
K-Smoove