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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
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Streak-busters: Bobcats snap losing streak. Nuggets snap Clippers win streak at 17. Award winners for December.

The year 2013 has arrived, a brand new year, and streaks came to an end this week across the association. Here are the highlights from Week 10 in the NBA.

Bobcats snap losing streak in Chicago.
Photo ©NBA/Bobcats.com
 
For the team who had the roughest year in 2012, they ended the year on a high note. As the Charlotte Bobcats snap their 18-game losing streak with a 91-81 victory against the Chicago Bulls at the United Center. The Bobcats with the win, surpass their win total from last season where they finished 7-59making history as the worst winning percentage in NBA history.
 
Sophomore guard Kemba Walker led the Bobcats with a great all-around game, 18 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists, 4 steals and 2 blocks on 6-13 shooting from the field, Gerald Henderson scored 16 points, while Ramon Sessions and Ben Gordon came off the bench and scored 15 points each. Bismack Biyombo grabbed 11 rebounds.

Luol Deng led the Bulls with a double-double 20 pointsand 12 rebounds with 4 assists and 3 steals. Carlos Boozer also finished with a double-double 19 points and 14 rebounds. Rip Hamilton scored 11 points.

Bobcats head coach Mike Dunlap has been preaching patience to all the people who are on watch with the team. Who knows in 2013, maybe the Bobcatswill make some noise in the East.

Nuggets snap Clippers 17 game win streak.
Photo ©NBA/Nuggets.com
A losing streak came to an end out East, while in the West, a winning streak came to an end, as the Denver Nuggets snap the 17 game winning streak the Los Angeles Clippers held, as well as getting a measure of revenge from their Christmas Day defeat in Los Angeles as they take a 92-78 victory at the Pepsi Center.
Danilo Gallinari led the Nuggets with 17 pointsand 6 rebounds. Kenneth Faried finished with a double-double 14 points and 11 rebounds. Andre Iguodala and Andre Miller each scored 12 points, Miller also dished out 12 assists, while Igouldala dished 8 assists. JaVale McGee off the benchadded 11 points and 7 rebounds including his first career 3 pointer. Corey Brewer scored 10 points.
Blake Griffin and Eric Bledsoe led the Clippers with 12 points each. Griffin added 9 rebounds. DeAndre Jordan finished with a double-double 11 points and 11 rebounds with 3 blocks. Chris Paul added 10 points and 6 assists. Jamal Crawford and Matt Barnes each scored 9 points.
 
The Clippers are now in second place in the Western Conference behind the Oklahoma City Thunder. With a tight race in the West, who knows who will coach in the NBA All-Star Game in Houston for the West? 
 
Meanwhile in Week 9, Monta Ellis becomes the second Milwaukee Bucks player after Brandon Jennings and the sixth player to receive the Eastern Conference Player of the Week Award this season. While Greivis Vasquez of the New Orleans Hornets becomes the eighth receipient of the Western Conference Player of the Week Award.
 
LeBron James of the Miami Heat wins his second straight Eastern Conference Player of the Month Award for the month of December, while Chris Paul of the Los Angeles Clippers won the Western Conference Player of the Month in December.
 
Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers wins his second straight Western Conference Rookie of the Month in December, while Bradley Beal of the Washington Wizards won the Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month in December.
 
Vinny Del Negro of the Los Angeles Clippers wins the Western Conference Coach of the Month after leading the Clippers to a perfect December (16-0). While Larry Drew of the Atlanta Hawks won in the Eastern Conference after leading the Hawks to a 10-5 record in December and see them competing in the Top 3of the Eastern Conference.
 
Now, here are the standings from around the association:
 
Western Conference:
1. Thunder (25-7), 2. Clippers (27-8), 3. Spurs (27-9), 4. Grizzlies (20-10), 5. Warriors (22-11), 6. Rockets (20-14), 7. Trail Blazers (18-15), 8. Nuggets (19-16), 9. Timberwolves (15-15), 10. Jazz (17-18), 11. Lakers (15-17), 12. Mavericks (13-21), 13. Kings (13-21), 14. Suns (12-22), 15. Hornets (8-25)
 
Eastern Conference:
1. Heat (22-9), 2. Knicks (23-10), 3. Hawks (20-12), 4. Pacers (20-14), 5. Bulls (18-13), 6. Nets (19-15), 7. Bucks (16-16), 8. Celtics (16-17), 9. 76ers (15-20), 10. Pistons (13-22), 11. Raptors (12-21), 12. Magic (12-21), 13. Bobcats (8-24), 14. Cavaliers (8-27), 15. Wizards (4-27)
 
Stay tuned as the next NBA weekly blog comes your way next week.
 
K-Smoove

NBA Christmas 2012: Heat defeat Thunder in Finals rematch. Clippers win 14th straight game. Lakers clicking at home. Rockets and Celtics rout opponents on the road.

On this special edition of my NBA blog, we look back at the games held on Christmas Day in the NBA. There were five games on tap for that day, teams went it in with their special  Christmas jerseys and they put on a show for fans on hand. Let’s get to it.

Heat knock off Thunder in Finals rematch.
Photo ©NBA/Heat.com
 
187 days ago, the Miami Heatcap off their quest for a second championship as they defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder in Game 5 of the 2012 NBA Finals in front of their home crowd at the American Airlines Arena. It was also the time when LeBron James fulfilled a dream to become a NBA Champion, as well as a Finals MVP trophy to complement, at the same time proving his haters and criticswrong. On Christmas Day, these two teams meet for the first time this season, and the game proved to be a scoring parade. The Heat would prevail over the Thunder 103-97.
 
The Heatnowlead the Eastern Conference at 19-6, while the Thudnerdrops to second in the West at 21-6.
 
James led the Heat with a near triple-double 29 points, 9 assists and 8 rebounds with 2 steals on 12-20 shooting from the field. Dwayne Wade added 21 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists. Mario Chalmersscored 20 points. Chris Bosh added 16 points and 6 rebounds. Also, Mike Miller made a career milestone by reaching the 10,000 point mark all-time in his career.
 
Kevin Durant led the Thunder with 33 points and 7 rebounds on 11-21 shooting from the field and 2-4 shooting from 3 point range. Russell Westbrook finished with a double-double 21 pointsand 11 rebounds. Kevin Martin off the benchand Serge Ibaka each scored 15 points.
 
Clippers win 14th straight game.
Photo ©NBA/Clippers.com
7 and half hours after the Lakers played a game inside Staples Center, their co-tenants and the hottest team in the NBA came out to begin their own Christmas Day game. The Los Angeles Clippers battled the Denver Nuggets, on the line was a 13 game winning streak, things went well for the Clippers as they defeat the Nuggets 112-100 for their 14th straight victory.
 
The Clippers now lead the Western Conference at 22-6, while the Nuggets drop to 8th place tie with the Utah Jazzat 15-14.
 
Jamal Crawford off the bench led the Clippers with 22 points on 9-21 shooting from the field and 3-6 shooting from 3 point range. Matt Barnes added 20 points, 8 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 blocks. Chris Paul added 14 points, 8 assists, 4 rebounds and 3 steals. Blake Griffinadded 13 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assists. Lamar Odom grabbed 10 rebounds.
 
Kosta Koufos led the Nuggets with a double-double 16 points and 10 rebounds on 8-8 shooting from the field. Jordan Hamilton off the bench also scored 16 points with 4 rebounds. Ty Lawson added 15 points, 5 assists and 3 rebounds. Andre Miller added 12 points and 6 rebounds.
 
Lakers defeat the Knicks at Staples.
Photo ©NBA/Lakers.com
 
The drama around Laker Nationis starting to fade as the Los Angeles Lakers have now found their groove and are now starting to make some ground in the Western Conference as they picked up their 5th straight win and go at .500at the expense of the New York Knicks at the Staples Center 100-94.
 
The Lakers are now at 14-14, tied for 10th place with the Portland Trail Blazers. While the Knicks drop to second place in the Eastern Conference at 20-8.
 
Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 34 points and 5 rebounds on 14-24 shootingfrom the field. Metta World Peace off the bench added 20 points and 7 rebounds before fouling out in the 4th quarter. Steve Nashfinished with a double-double 16 points and 11 assists with 6 rebounds on 7-12 shooting from the field. Dwight Howard also finished with a double-double 14 points and 12 rebounds with 2 steals and 2 blocks. Pau Gasol added 13 points and 6 rebounds.
 
Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks with 34 points and 7 rebounds on 13-23 shooting from the field. J.R. Smith off the bench added 25 points, 5 rebounds and 2 steals on 10-23 shooting from the field. Raymond Felton added 10 points and 6 rebounds.
 
Rockets blow out Bulls in Chicago.
Photo ©NBA/Rockets.com
 
The team with the fastest pace in the NBA today have picked up another win by another scoring rampage on another defensive-oriented team, the Houston Rockets led by as many as 35 points, were able to keep their composure despite a late challenge in the fourth quarter as theyblew out the Chicago Bulls on their home floor at the United Center 120-97.
 
The Rockets are in 6th place in the Western Conference at 15-12, while the Bulls lose their lead in the Central Division to the Indiana Pacers at 15-12, in 5th place in the Eastern Conference.
 
Four Rockets players finished with more than 20 points with James Harden leading the way with 26 points, 6 assists, 5 reboundsand 2 steals on 7-13shooting from the field and 11-13 shooting from the free throw line. Chandler Parsons added 23 points, 5 rebounds and 2 steals on 9-15 shooting from the field and 4-5 shooting from 3 point range. Omer Asik who made his return to Chicago finished with a double-double 20 points and 18 rebounds with 3 blocks on 9-13 shooting from the field. Jeremy Lin also finished with a double-double 20 points and 11 assists on 8-12 shooting from the field.
 
Nate Robinson off the bench led the Bulls with 27 points, 4 rebounds and 2 steals on 9-16 shooting from the field. Marco Belinelli added 15 points and 3 assists on 5-10 shooting from the field. Luol Deng added 14 points and 5 rebounds.
 
Celtics take Atlantic showdown in Brooklyn.
Photo ©NBA/Celtics.com
 
Defense was the key to this game as the Boston Celticswith their stifling defensetake the Atlantic Division showdown against the Brooklyn Nets at the Barclays Center 9376. The Celtics forced the Nets to 20 turnovers and 40% shooting from the field.
 
With the win, the Celtics tie the Nets for 7th place in the Eastern Conference at 14-13.
 
Rajon Rondo led the Celtics with 19 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists and 3 steals on 8-16 shooting from the field and 2-2 shooting from 3 point range. Rookie Jared Sullinger off the bench added 16 points and 7 rebounds on 6-7 shooting from the field. Jeff Green scored 15 points. Jason Terry added 11 points and 4 assists. Paul Pierce dished out 10 assists with 8 points while Kevin Garnett grabbed 10 rebounds with 8 points.
Brook Lopez and Gerald Wallace led the Nets with 15 points each. Lopez added 8 rebounds and 2 blocks. Wallace added 6 rebounds and 3 steals. Joe Johnson added 12 rebounds and 4 assists. Deron Williams added 10 points and 6 assists.
 
Watch out for my NBA weekly blog, the last one for 2012coming out this Sunday.
 
K-Smoove

NBA Daily Blog Playoff Edition: Lakers advance to the 2nd round, defeats the Nuggets in Game 7 96-87. Celtics beat the 76ers in Game 1 92-91. Plus, Grizzlies forcing a Game 7 vs the Clippers with Game 6 win yesterday 90-88.

Pau Gasol with the dunk vs the Nuggets
Photo ©NBA/Lakers.com

Before I begin with today’s action. I was unable to put up my NBA Daily Blog yesterday since I went out before the Grizzlies vs Clippers game was finished and I was unable to blog it out. So, in this edition, we’ll also highlight Game 6 of their series (see post below).

The Los Angeles Lakers are moving on to the second round as they take Game 7 of their first round series against the Denver Nuggets at the Staples Center 96-87. The Lakers will now face the #2 seed the Oklahoma City Thunder. Game 1 will be in Oklahoma City on May 15.

Pau Gasol led the Lakers with a double-double 23 points and 17 rebounds with 6 assists and 4 blocks. Steve Blake off the bench added 19 points and 2 steals while shooting 5-6 from 3 point range. Kobe Bryant added 17 points and 8 assists. Andrew Bynum also finished with a double-double 16 points and 18 rebounds with 6 blocks. Metta World Peace who returned to the hardcourt after serving a 7 game suspension added 15 points, 5 rebounds, 4 steals and 2 blocks.

Ty Lawson led the Nuggets with 24 points, 5 rebounds and 6 assists. Al Harrington off the bench also scored 24 points. Arron Afflalo scored 15 points. JaVale McGee pulled down 14 rebounds with 6 points and 5 blocks. Andre Miller pulled down 11 rebounds with 8 assists. Rookie Kenneth Faried pulled down 10 rebounds with 6 points.

In Boston, the Boston Celtics continue their playoff campaign into the second round, coming up with a come from behind Game 1 victory over their Atlantic Division rivals, the Philadelphia 76ers at the TD Garden 92-91. The Celtics trailed by 10 at the start of the fourth, but fought their way back and came up with a thrilling victory. Game 2 will be in Boston on May 15 as the Celtics would look to take a 2-0 series lead before the series shifts to Philadelphia. Kevin Garnett led the Celtics with a double-double 29 points and 11 rebounds with 3 blocks. Paul Pierce added 14 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 blocks. Rajon Rondo finished with a triple-double 13 points, 12 rebounds and 17 assists with 4 steals. Ray Allen off the bench scored 12 points. Brandon Bass added 10 points and 4 rebounds. Andre Iguodala led the 76ers with 19 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 steals. Evan Turner finished with a double-double 16 points and 10 rebounds with 4 steals. Spencer Hawes added 15 points, 8 rebounds and 2 blocks. Rookie Lavoy Allen off the bench added 12 points and 6 rebounds.

Yesterday in Los Angeles, the Memphis Grizzlies force a winner take all Game 7 in their first round series as they defeat the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 6 at the Staples Center 90-88. Game 7 will be in Memphis on May 14 where the winner will face the top seeded team in the West, the San Antonio Spurs. Marc Gasol led the Grizzlies with 23 points and 9 rebounds. Zach Randolph finished with a double-double 18 points and 16 rebounds with 3 blocks. Rudy Gay added 13 points and 6 rebounds. Mike Conley also scored 13 points with 4 rebounds and 9 assists. Tony Allen added 8 points, 2 steals and 2 blocks. Blake Griffin led the Clippers with 17 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists and 3 steals. Eric Bledsoe off the bench added 14 points and 6 assists. Chris Paul added 11 points, 5 rebounds, 7 assists and 4 steals. Caron Butler and Kenyon Martin each scored 10 points.

In other news, LeBron James of the Miami Heat was named the 2012 NBA Most Valuable Player. James who won his third MVP award of his career (a back-to-back in 2009 and 2010 with the Cleveland Cavaliers) led the Heat with season averages of 27.6 points, 6.2 rebounds, 5.6 assists and 2.2 steals leading them to a 46-20 record, good for 2nd place in the East. James also joins a lot of good company as he joins Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Moses Malone, Larry Bird, Magic Johnson and Michael Jordan as players who have won the MVP award at least 3 times in their careers. Kevin Durant of the Oklahoma City Thunder finished second in the voting. While Chris Paul of the Los Angeles Clippers, Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers and Tony Parker of the San Antonio Spurs finished 3rd, 4th and 5th respectively in the voting.

2012 NBA Playoffs Bracket (as of 14:06 PHT)

WESTERN CONFERENCE

#1 Spurs vs #8 Jazz
SAN ANTONIO SPURS WINS SERIES 4-0

#4 Grizzlies vs #5 Clippers (Series tied 3-3)
Game 7: May 14, 1:00 am PHT on Basketball TV and NBA Premium TV

#3 Lakers vs #6 Nuggets
LOS ANGELES LAKERS WINS SERIES 4-0

#2 Thunder vs #3 Lakers
Game 1: May 15, 9:30 am PHT Channel TBD

#2 Thunder vs #7 Mavericks
OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER WINS SERIES 4-0
EASTERN CONFERENCE

#4 Celtics vs #8 76ers (Celtics lead series 1-0)
Game 2: May 15, 7:00 am PHT Channel TBD

#2 Heat vs #3 Pacers
Game 1: May 14, 3:30 am PHT on NBA Premium TV

K-Smoove

NBA Daily Blog Playoff Edition: 76ers knock out top-seeded Bulls in Game 6 on Iguodala’s free throws 79-78, will face the Celtics in 2nd round who defeat the Hawks in Game 6 83-80. Nuggets force Game 7 vs the Lakers.

Andre Iguodala and Lou Williams celebrate as the 76ers win Game 6 vs the Bulls
Photo ©NBA/Sixers.com

The Philadelphia 76ers become the fifth #8 seeded team in NBA history to knock off the #1 seed as they take the series 4-2 in thrilling fashion as they defeat the Chicago Bulls in Game 6 at the Wells Fargo Center on Andre Iguodala’s two clutch free throws 79-78. The 76ers trailed by 3 75-78 with 25 seconds left. Thaddeus Young scored a lay-up to make it 77-78. Then the 76ers foul center Omer Asik who in turn missed two crucial free throws for the Bulls as Iguodala raised down the court and drew the foul which led to the two clutch free throws he sank. The Bulls had a chance to win but C.J. Watson’s halfcourt heave went off the iron. The 76ers advance to the second round for the first time since 2003 and will now face the Boston Celtics who won in Game 6 of their series against the Atlanta Hawks (see story below). Their series begins on May 13 in Boston.

Iguodala led the 76ers with 20 points, 4 rebounds and 7 assists. Lou Williams off the bench added 14 points, 3 assists and 3 steals. Jrue Holiday added 14 points, 3 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 steals. Evan Turner added 10 points and 5 rebounds. Spencer Hawes added 8 points and 10 rebounds. Thaddeus Young also scored 8 points with 6 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals.

Luol Deng led the Bulls with a double-double 19 points and 17 rebounds with 3 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks. Rip Hamilton also scored 19 points with 8 rebounds. Taj Gibson off the bench added 14 points, 5 rebounds and 2 blocks. Omer Asik finished with 10 points, 9 rebounds and 2 blocks. Carlos Boozer pulled down 13 rebounds but only scored 3 points.

In Boston, the Boston Celtics also advance to the second round as they take the series 4-2 against the Atlanta Hawks in Game 6 at the TD Garden 83-80. The Celtics will face the #8 seed Philadelphia 76ers who defeated the #1 seed Chicago Bulls (see story above) on May 13 in Boston. Kevin Garnett led the Celtics with a double-double 28 points and 14 rebounds with 3 steals and 5 blocks. Paul Pierce added 18 points, 5 rebounds, 7 assists and 2 steals. Rajon Rondo added 14 points and 8 assists. Ray Allen off the bench added 7 points and 5 rebounds. Josh Smith led the Hawks with 18 points, 9 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 steals. Joe Johnson scored 17. Marvin Williams added 16 points and 8 rebounds. Al Horford added 15 points, 9 rebounds and 4 assists.

In Denver, the Denver Nuggets force a winner take all Game 7 in their first round series as they blow out the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 6 at the Pepsi Center 113-96. Game 7 will be in Los Angeles on May 13 as this series winds down to one final game, the winner will face the #2 seeded Oklahoma City Thunder in the second round. Ty Lawson led the Nuggets with 32 points, 5 rebounds and 6 assists. Corey Brewer off the bench added 18 points and 2 steals. Rookie Kenneth Faried finished with a double-double 15 points and 11 rebounds with 2 blocks. Danilo Gallinari added 12 points, 4 rebounds and 7 assists. Andre Miller also scored 12 points with 4 rebounds. Kobe Bryant who played with a stomach illness led the Lakers with 31 points and 4 assists. Ramon Sessions added 14 points and 3 assists. Andrew Bynum finished with a double-double 11 points and 16 rebounds with 4 blocks. Devin Ebanks scored 10. Metta World Peace will return to action for Game 7 after serving a 7 game suspension after he elbowed Thunder guard James Harden during the final week of the regular season.

2012 NBA Playoffs Bracket (as of 13:58 PHT)

WESTERN CONFERENCE

#1 Spurs vs #8 Jazz
SAN ANTONIO SPURS WINS SERIES 4-0

#4 Grizzlies vs #5 Clippers (Clippers lead series 3-2)
Game 6: May 12, 9:00 am PHT on ESPN

#3 Lakers vs #6 Nuggets (Series tied 3-3)
Game 7: May 13, 10:30 am PHT Channel TBD

#2 Thunder vs #7 Mavericks
OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER WINS SERIES 4-0

EASTERN CONFERENCE

#1 Bulls vs #8 76ers
PHILADELPHIA 76ERS WINS SERIES 4-2

#4 Celtics vs #8 76ers
Game 1: May 13, 8:00 am PHT Channel TBD

#4 Celtics vs #5 Hawks
BOSTON CELTICS WINS SERIES 4-2

#3 Pacers vs #6 Magic
INDIANA PACERS WINS SERIES 4-1

#2 Heat vs #3 Pacers
Game 1: May 14, 3:30 am PHT Channel TBD

#2 Heat vs #7 Knicks
MIAMI HEAT WINS SERIES 4-1

K-Smoove

NBA Daily Blog Playoff Edition: Pacers advance to the second round after Game 5 win vs the Magic 105-87. Bulls, Hawks and Nuggets force Game 6 in each of their series.

The Indiana Pacers celebrate as they advance to the second round of the playoffs.
Photo ©NBA/Pacers.com

This is my 50th blog entry since I returned to blogging last month. So let’s get it on with today’s NBA Daily Blog.

For the first time since 2005, the Indiana Pacers advance to the second round of the 2012 NBA Playoffs as they win their first round series in Game 5 against the Orlando Magic at Bankers Life Fieldhouse 105-87. The Pacers will face the winner between the Miami Heat and the New York Knicks with the Heat leading the series 3-1 and Game 5 to be played tomorrow in Miami. Meanwhile for the Magic, they will face a uncertain off-season with key players entering their final contract years which includes superstar Dwight Howard and with coach Stan Van Gundy on the ropes to stay as head coach for the Magic.

Danny Granger led the Pacers with 25 points, 4 rebounds and 3 assists. Darren Collison off the bench added 19 points, 6 assists and 3 steals. George Hill added 15 points and 6 rebounds. David West added 12 points, 8 rebounds, 2 steals and 2 blocks. Roy Hibbert added 11 points, 7 rebounds and 2 blocks. Paul George added 8 points, 6 rebounds and 2 steals.

Jameer Nelson led the Magic with 27 points, 4 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals. Glen Davis added 15 points, 8 rebounds and 2 blocks. Ryan Anderson added 14 points and 4 rebounds. J.J. Redick off the bench scored 12. Jason Richardson scored 8.

In Atlanta, the Atlanta Hawks keep their playoff hopes alive with the win in Game 5 against the Boston Celtics at Phillips Arena 87-86. Game 6 will be played in Boston on May 11as the Celtics have an opportunity to advance to the second round at home. Al Horford led the Hawks with a double-double 19 points and 11 rebounds with 3 steals and 3 blocks. Jeff Teague added 16 points, 5 assists and 2 blocks. Joe Johnson added 15 points, 4 assists and 2 steals. Marvin Williams also scored 15 points with 4 rebounds. Josh Smith also finished with a double-double 13 points and 16 rebounds with 6 assists. Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett led the Celtics with each scoring 16 points. Pierce also added 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals. Garnett also added 7 rebounds. Ray Allen off the bench added 15 points and 4 assists. Brandon Bass added 14 points and 7 rebounds. Rajon Rondo finished with a double-double 13 points and 12 rebounds with 5 rebounds and 5 steals.

In Chicago, the top-seeded Chicago Bulls force a Game 6 in their first round series against the Philadelphia 76ers with the victory in Game 5 at the United Center 77-69. Game 6 will be played in Philadelphia on May 11 as the 76ers have one more chance of advancing to the second round, this time on their home floor. Luol Deng led the Bulls with 24 points, 8 rebounds, 2 steals and 2 blocks. Carlos Boozer finished with a double-double 19 points and 13 rebounds with 6 assists. Taj Gibson off the bench added 8 points, 7 rebounds and 4 blocks. Rip Hamilton and Ronnie Brewer each scored 6. Brewer also added 8 rebounds and 3 steals. Jrue Holiday led the 76ers with 16 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists, 3 steals and 2 blocks. Lou Williams scored 13 off the bench. Spencer Hawes finished with a double-double 11 points and 14 rebounds with 2 blocks. Andre Iguodala added 11 points, 4 rebounds and 3 steals.

In Los Angeles, the Denver Nuggets win a thriller as they win Game 5 of their first round series against the Los Angeles Lakers at the Staples Center 102-99. The Nuggets snap a 9 game playoff road losing streak and force a Game 6 back home in Denver on May 11. The Lakers had a chance to send the game into overtime but Kobe Bryant missed a three in the end game. Andre Miller off the bench led the Nuggets with 24 points and 8 rebounds. JaVale McGee finished with a double-double 21 points and 14 rebounds with 2 blocks. Arron Afflalo added 19 points, 5 rebounds and 3 steals. Danilo Gallinari added 14 points and 5 rebounds. Rookie Kenneth Faried added 10 points and 9 rebounds. Ty Lawson added 9 points, 8 assists and 3 steals. Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 43 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals. Andrew Bynum finished with a double-double 16 points and 11 rebounds. Matt Barnes off the bench added 11 points, 4 rebounds and 2 steals. Pau Gasol added 9 rebounds, 10 assists and 3 blocks. Ramon Sessions also scored 9 points with 6 rebounds and 6 assists.

2012 NBA Playoffs Bracket (as of 13:39 PHT)

WESTERN CONFERENCE

#1 Spurs vs #8 Jazz
SAN ANTONIO SPURS WINS SERIES 4-0

#4 Grizzlies vs #5 Clippers (Clippers lead series 3-1)
Game 5: May 10, 9:30 am PHT on NBA Premium TV

#3 Lakers vs #6 Nuggets (Lakers lead series 3-2)
Game 6: May 11, 10:30 am PHT Channel TBD

#2 Thunder vs #7 Mavericks
OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER WINS SERIES 4-0

EASTERN CONFERENCE

#1 Bulls vs #8 76ers (76ers lead series 3-2)
Game 6: May 11, Time and Channel TBD

#4 Celtics vs #5 Hawks (Celtics lead series 3-2)
Game 6: May 11, Time and Chnnel TBD

#3 Pacers vs #6 Magic
INDIANA PACERS WINS SERIES 4-0

#2 Heat vs #7 Knicks (Heat lead series 3-1)
Game 5: May 10, 7:00 am PHT on ESPN

K-Smoove

NBA Daily Blog Playoff Edition: Knicks avoid the sweep with Game 4 win vs the Heat 89-87. 76ers, Celtics and Lakers take 3-1 leads.

Carmelo Anthony drives on LeBron James
Photo ©NBA/Knicks.com

The New York Knicks avoid the sweep and snap a 13 game playoff losing streak with a Game 4 victory over the Miami Heat at Madison Square Garden 89-87. Game 5 will be back in Miami on May 10 as the Heat will have another chance to advance into the second round.

Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks with 41 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists. Amar’e Stoudemire who came back after injuring his left hand after he punched a fire extinguisher after their loss in Game 2 finished with a double-double 20 points and 10 rebounds. J.R. Smith off the bench added 7 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 steals. Mike Bibby added 6 points and 5 rebounds. Tyson Chandler pulled down 9 rebounds with 2 steals.

LeBron James led the Heat with 27 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists. Dwayne Wade added 22 points, 3 rebounds, 6 assists, 4 steals and 3 blocks. Chris Bosh added 17 points and 9 rebounds. Mario Chalmers and Udonis Haslem each scored 6.

In Philadelphia, the Philadelphia 76ers are one win away from pulling an upset as they pick up the win in Game 4 of their first round series against the top-seeded Chicago Bulls at the Wells Fargo Center 89-82. Game 5 will be back in Chicago on May 9 as the Bulls will try to keep their season alive at home. Spencer Hawes led the 76ers with 22 points, 8 rebounds and 2 blocks. Jrue Holiday added 20 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists. Andre Iguodala finished with a double-double 14 points and 12 rebounds with 3 steals. Evan Turner added 9 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists. Thaddeus Young off the bench scored 8. Elton Brand added 7 points, 9 rebounds and 2 blocks. Lou Williams also scored 7 off the bench. Carlos Boozer led the Bulls with a double-double 23 points and 11 rebounds with 4 assists and 2 steals. C.J. Watson added 17 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists. Taj Gibson off the bench also finished with a double-double 14 points and 12 rebounds with 4 blocks. Luol Deng added 11 points and 5 rebounds.

In Boston, the Boston Celtics take a 3-1 series lead with a victory in Game 4 over the Atlanta Hawks at the TD Garden 101-79. Game 5 will be back in Atlanta on May 9 as the season for the Hawks is on the line at home. Paul Pierce led the Celtics with 24 points, 4 rebounds and 2 blocks. Rajon Rondo finished with a double-double 20 points and 16 assists with 3 rebounds and 3 steals. Kevin Garnett added 13 points, 5 rebounds and 2 steals. Ray Allen off the bench added 12 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists. Brandon Bass and Keyon Dooling each scored 10. Josh Smith who came back from an injury he suffered in Game 2 led the Hawks with a double-double 15 points and 13 rebounds with 5 assists. Al Horford also coming back from a injury that kept him sidelined since January added 12 points and 5 rebounds coming off the bench. Jannero Pargo added 11 points, 3 rebounds and 3 assists. Joe Johnson scored 9.

In Denver, the Los Angeles Lakers take a commanding 3-1 series lead with a Game 4 victory over the Denver Nuggets at the Pepsi Center 92-88. Game 5 will be back in Los Angeles as the Lakers have a chance to wrap up the series at home. Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 22 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists. Andrew Bynum added 19 points, 7 rebounds and 3 blocks. Pau Gasol added 13 points, 9 rebounds and 6 assists. Jordan Hill off the bench finished with a double-double 12 points and 11 rebounds. Ramon Sessions also scored 12 points with 4 rebounds. Steve Blake scored 10. Danilo Gallinari led the Nuggets with 20 points and 6 rebounds. Andre Miller off the bench added 15 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 steals. Ty Lawson added 11 points and 6 assists. Al Harrington added 9 points, 6 rebounds and 2 steals.

2012 NBA Playoffs Bracket (as of 13:00 PHT)

WESTERN CONFERENCE

#1 Spurs vs #8 Jazz (Spurs lead series 3-0)
Game 4: May 8, 8:00 am PHT on Basketball TV

#4 Grizzlies vs #5 Clippers (Clippers lead series 2-1)
Game 4: May 8, 10:30 am PHT on NBA Premium TV

#3 Lakers vs #6 Nuggets (Lakers lead series 2-1)
Game 5: May 9, 10:30 am PHT on NBA Premium TV

#2 Thunder vs #7 Mavericks
OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER WINS SERIES 4-0

EASTERN CONFERENCE

#1 Bulls vs #8 76ers (76ers lead series 3-1)
Game 5: May 9, 9:30 am PHT on Basketball TV and NBA Premium TV

#4 Celtics vs #5 Hawks (Celtics lead series 3-1)
Game 5: May 9, 8:00 am PHT on NBA Premium TV

#3 Pacers vs #6 Magic (Pacers lead series 3-1)
Game 5: May 9, 7:00 am PHT on Basketball TV and NBA Premium TV

#2 Heat vs #7 Knicks (Heat lead series 3-1)
Game 5: May 10, 7:00 am PHT Channel TBD

K-Smoove