The good times just keep on keeping on, with day 2 of the 2013 NBA playoffs packing in just as much action. The first round is chock full of interesting plot lines, so continuing our theme from yesterday, let’s break them down game by game.
1 – Miami vs. 8 – Milwaukee (Miami win 110-87)
Turns out Brandon Jennings talks a better game than he plays as the Miami Heat gave the Milwaukee Bucks all they could handle and then some. Lebron James took the fewest shots in a playoff game in his career and still helped the Heat pull down Milwaukee’s strides and give them a hiding. James efficiently scored 27 points, efficiently dished 8 assists and efficiently broke Milwaukee’s collective spirit.
Dwyane Wade wasn’t too shabby himself, picking his spots to dominate, while Chris Bosh hit three 3-pointers while effectively drawing Larry Sanders way out of the paint.
The first half was competitive truth be told, but Milwaukee had no answer in the second half as Miami outscored them 58-42 over the last two periods.
All Milwaukee can really do now is try and make holiday plans. Or prepare for more pain in game 2. Whatever they want.
1 – Oklahoma City vs. 8 – Houston (OKC win 120-91)
James Harden brings his new band of troops to OKC and the plot line is thicker than Harden’s beard. OKC showed their class in all phases of the game and proved that Houston has a lot of work to do in the off season.
Harden tried to brush it off. “Believe it or not, I think this was good for us,” he said. “Losing like this was definitely good for us. Now we know how to play.” But sorry James, your team needs to already know how to play if you want to bring it to a team like OKC.
OKC just did whatever they wanted as Russell Westbrook flirted with a triple-dip, Kevin Durant did Kevin Durant things and even Kendrick Perkins got to play his standard game with 19 minutes, 4 points and 4 rebounds. People used to wonder how Miami could be successful with Joel Anthony as a starting big and Mike Bibby getting minutes. The same holds true for OKC with Perkins and Derek Fisher’s corpse. It has to catch up to them eventually, but today wasn’t that day as OKC manhandled the Rockets into an awful shooting night.
2 – San Antonio vs. 7 – Los Angeles Lakers (San Antonio wins 91-79)
Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard put up huge numbers for the Lakers, but it wasn’t enough against a concerted team effort from Pop’s boys. Manu Ginobli was electric and Tony Parker was healthy enough to contribute, and that’s all it took for San Antonio to put a hopeful Lakers team back in their box.
The Lakers have to be very seriously concerned as their starters played about as good a game as they can expect, and they were never really close in this one. 10 points from the Lakers reserves is just not going to get it done, although the Laker shot chart does look a lot healthier with Kobe Bryant sitting at home with a busted wheel.
The takeaway for Dwight’s team is that this is what he can look forward to when Kobe is rehabbing his achilles.
3 – Indiana vs. 6 – Atlanta (Indiana win 107-90)
Orlando Johnson vs. Shelvin Mack, it’s the Indiana Pacers vs. the Atlanta Hawks! Wow this game is boring on paper. We should probably go through the motions though, as Paul George took one more step towards convincing people he’s a bonafide superstar with a playoff triple double. Of course shot 3 for 13 and missed all 5 of his triples, so it takes the lustre off of it somewhat. That’s right folks, Indiana and Atlanta, the consolation game here on day 2 of the NBA Playoffs.
I could bang on here for another few paragraphs about this game, but let’s be honest, I skipped this on League Pass, and so did you. The less said about Indiana and Atlanta the better.
The excitement picks up again tomorrow as Tom Thibodeau makes Joakim Noah run sprints until his leg falls off and we get to see the contrasting styles of Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan from “Team Lob” face Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol from “Team floorbound” in what will be a fantastic matchup. My sarcasm aside, I think Clips/Griz is the best matchup of round 1, so come back here at the same bat time as Hendo breaks down tomorrow’s games.