The opening day of the 2013 playoffs are now in the books. We saw one exciting finish, and the other results were pretty much as expected.
Boston Celtics 78 New York Knicks 85, Knicks lead 1-0
For most of the game, it looked like the Knicks were going to give away home court advantage. Trailing at halftime, and 70-67 heading into the fourth quarter, the Knicks held Boston to just eight points in the fourth, shooting just 3 for 8 from the field as a team.
The Knicks were led by Carmelo Anthony, who scored 36 points, 17 in the second half. The biggest play of the game came with two and a half minutes left when Anthony stole a pass from Paul Pierce that lead to an easy layup to make the score 81-76. Anthony then made a jump shot from the right wing the next possession to essentially put the game out of reach.
J.R. Smith added 15 points off the bench, while Raymond Felton added 13 points and 6 assists. Jason Kidd added 8 points, and Kenyon Martin scored 10 points and grabbed 9 rebounds.
The Celtics were led by Jeff Green with 28 points and 7 rebounds. Pierce scored 21 points and Avery Bradley added 15 points. But it was the turnovers that killed Boston’s chances, as they committed 20 turnovers to just 13 by the Knicks.
QUOTE OF THE GAME: “Everybody that was on him played great defense on him. He’s just a great player. We have to continue to make things hard for him.”
— Bradley on Anthony, who went 13-for-29.
Golden State Warriors 95 Denver Nuggets 97, Nuggets lead 1-0
The player of the game is hands down, Andre Miller. The 37 year old veteran, who hit a driving layup with 1.2 seconds to play to give Denver the win. In a 14 year career in which he’s never been out of the first round of the playoffs, Miller scored 28 points off the bench to lift the Nuggets.
The Warriors were led by Klay Thompson with 22 points. Stephen Curry added 19 points and 9 assists. But Curry struggled early on, not making a three pointer until the third quarter. But David Lee, playing in his first career playoff game, hurt his hip in the third quarter and limped off the court, and is expected to miss the rest of the playoffs.
With the Nuggets leading by 95-92, Curry hit a three-pointer with 14.5 seconds to tie the game. That would set up Miller’s game winning shot.
QUOTE OF THE GAME: “Coach is going through all of the plays and we were all looking at each other. Andre (Iguodala) was hot, we were kind of like, ‘Why don’t we just get out of the way and let Andre have the ball.’ That’s what happened. He had Draymond Green on him and we kind of like those odds.”
– Nuggets forward Corey Brewer
Chicago Bulls 89 Brooklyn Nets 106, Nets lead 1-0
In the first ever playoff game at Barcaly’s Center, the Nets never trailed, shooting a remarkable 55 percent from the field against a stingy Bulls Defense. Deron Williams led the way with 22 points and 7 assists, while Brook Lopez scored 21 points and blocked 3 shots.
It seems possible that it could be an early exit for the Bulls, as it looks like Derrick Rose will not play in the playoffs. The only bright spot for Chicago was Carlos Boozer, who scored 25 points and grabbed 8 rebounds. The Bulls gave up 56 points in the paint, and the team struggled to convert shots near the basket.
QUOTE OF THE GAME: “We just needed to keep up our energy. We felt like we were supposed to win all four games [against the Bulls] in the regular season.”
– Nets forward Gerald Wallace
Memphis Grizzlies 91 Los Angeles Clippers 102, Clippers lead 1-0
The Clippers looked like the team that those who predicted them to win the western conference should look like, coasting to a 112-91 win. Chris Paul led L.A. with 23 points and 7 assists, and Eric Bledsoe scored 15 points off the bench.
The Grizzlies were led by Jerryd Bayless, who scored 19 points off the bench, and Marc Gasol had 16 points and 7 assists. But Memphis had no answer defensively, as the Clippers shot 55 percent from the field, and was outrebounded, 47-23.
QUOTE OF THE GAME: “We got beat at our own game.”
–Memphis center Marc Gasol