Monday, April 27, 2009

NBA Playoffs Heating Up!

I'll start with this. Yesterday's NBA action brought more excitement than the entire 2009 NCAA Tournament. 3 of the 4 games were decided by 3 points or less, and the other game, you got to see more Lebron James domination.

Bulls even series at 2 with dramatic double overtime victory against Celtics

Once this game went to the first overtime, it was already considered the most exciting series of the first round (I think Orlando/Philly might have something to say about that now). Up 3 with time running out, Chicago had the game won in regulation but then decided not to cover Ray Allen. Allen nailed a wide open 3 point bomb to tie the game and send it to overtime. Remember Allen won Game 2 for Boston on a last second 3.

In the first OT, the Celtics went up by 5. Chicago hung in there and where down 3 with 9 seconds left. Boston was looking to foul but somehow Ben Gordon was able to get an open look and bury the tying 3 pointer.

The second OT, Chicago never trailed. John Salmons finished with 20 points including hitting 4-4 from the foul line in the last 26 seconds. Down 3, Boston still had a chance to tie the game. But it was Salmons again coming up big blocking Paul Pierce's 3 point shot to end the game as the Bulls held on, 121-118.

The Bulls had all 7 players who took a shot score in double figures.

Derrick Rose finished with 23 points, 11 rebounds, 9 assists, but also had 7 turnovers.

Rajon Rondo, looking like the best player in green, had his second triple double of the series-25 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists.

End of an Era as Pistons swept by Cavs

For the last 6 years, Detroit has been in the Eastern Conference Finals. This year is a changing of the guard as the Piston's were barely a bug hitting the windshield on Lebron and the Cavs' drive to the Finals.

Cleveland played Game 4 like the previous 3, they won by double digits. There may have been more Cavs' fans at The Palace in Auburn Hills as Cleveland won 99-78.

For the series, Lebron James averaged 32 points, 11.3 rebounds and 7.5 assists.

This was also probably the last game for Rasheed Wallace as a Piston.

Orlando blows another lead, Turkoglu's 3 bails them out

Here's what we've had in the other exciting first round series:

Game 1 was Andre Iguodala.
Game 3 was Thaddeus Young.
And Game 4 was Hedo Turkoglu and Orlando's turn for last second magic.

If we've learned anything from this series, it's no lead is safe, Dwight Howard can actually hit free throws, and chances are, the game is gonna come down to the final seconds.

Orlando led by 10 points with 4:30 remaining in the game. Then Philly went on a 12-2 run and tied the game at 81 on Samuel Dalembert's easy bucket with just under 15 seconds left.

Orlando had the last shot and it was Hedo Turkoglu's 3 point shot that gave the Magic a 84-81 win and tie the series at 2 apiece.

Rockets lose early lead, comeback to survive Game 4

Houston was finally able to get their big man back into the series. After going perfect in Game 1, Yao Ming had not been nearly as dominant in Games 2 and 3.

Yao came back in Game 4 with a solid performance as the Rockets held off the Trailblazers, 89-88 to go up 3-1. Yao finished with 21 points and 12 rebounds.

The Rockets were up 50-44 at halftime, but lost the lead as Portland finished the third quarter on a 13-1 run to go up 70-64 after three.

Offensive rebounds and second chance points were key for the Rockets in this game, especially in the 4th quarter. Shane Battier hit a couple of three's to put Houston ahead for good. Battier was huge with 14 points, 8 boards, 6 assists and shot 4-6 from downtown. Houston as a team was 9-16 from downtown compared to Portland's 7-15 from behind the arc.

After averaging 20.3 ppg through the first 3 games, Aaron Brooks was a no show with only 5 points. In fact Rick Adelman kept Brooks on the bench a good chunk of the game. Brooks and Kyle Lowry both played 24 minutes. Neither really helped their team as Lowry finished with just 4 points on 1-6 shooting.

Brandon Roy again led all scorers with 31 points. He was 13-13 from the charity stripe. But he was the only one getting to the line for the Trailblazers, as they were 17-17 as a team, Roy getting 13 of the 17 foul shots.

Yao Ming has been dominant against Greg Oden and Joel Przybilla. The two Portland centers have been almost nonexistent. Last night they combined for 4 points on 2-3 shooting and 15 reboudns. Oden had no points and 3 rebounds alone.

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