Celtics overcome Bulls in another OT thriller
Bulls 104 at Celtics 106
Kevin Garnett was in street clothes. Ray Allen fouled out. The Boston Celtics’ Big Three was down to one, and Paul Pierce was ready. The MVP of last year’s NBA finals scored 26 points, hitting one jumper to tie the game at the end of regulation and three more in the final 77 seconds of overtime on Tuesday night to help the Celtics beat the Chicago Bulls 106-104 and take a 3-2 lead in their best-of-seven playoff series. “I just thought when Ray fouled out it was time for me to really step up,” said Pierce, who scored 12 points in the 10 minutes after Allen left the game.
Howard, Magic outmuscle Sixers in Game 5
76ers 78 at Magic 91
Dwight Howard did so much damage to the Philadelphia 76ers he set off a coaching feud. Howard had 24 points and a career playoff-high 24 rebounds, a dominating performance that powered the Magic to a 91-78 victory over the Sixers on Tuesday night and gave Orlando a 3-2 series lead. Afterward, Philadelphia coach Tony DiLeo said Howard should have been called for 3 seconds in the lane several times and asked the league to look into an elbow from Howard on Samuel Dalembert.
Mavericks finish off Spurs in Game 5
Mavericks 106 at Spurs 93
Jason Terry galloped down court after one big shot and Josh Howard skipped along the sideline after another. For what the Dallas Mavericks were about to pull off, they might as well have danced. For the first time since 2006, the Mavericks are moving past the first round. And for the first time since 2000, the San Antonio Spurs are not. Dirk Nowitzki scored 31 points in his first breakout game of a lopsided series, and the Mavericks won a playoff series for the first time in three years by eliminating the Spurs in five games with a 106-93 victory on Tuesday night.
Hornets hold off Nuggets in Game 3 (Nuggets up 2-1)
Nuggets 93 at Hornets 95
In a relieved New Orleans locker room, Chris Paul and James Posey chatted about all the hard fouls, all the flying bodies that more than anything defined the Hornets’ first win of this postseason. “This is the fun part of the playoffs, all the contact, all the flagrant fouls,” Paul said. “You never want anyone to get hurt, but after it’s all said and done, you smile about it because that’s the nature of the sport.” Playing a grueling 46 minutes and shaking off a hard foul committed against him, Paul had 32 points and 12 assists, helping New Orleans hold on for a 95-93 victory over the Denver Nuggets on Saturday in Game 3 of their first-round series.
Howard lifts Mavericks past Spurs for 3-1 lead
Spurs 90 at Mavericks 99
Tony Parker was exhausted, having done everything the San Antonio Spurs wanted him to by aggressively taking the ball to the basket. When Parker wasn’t scoring, Tim Duncan was while bouncing back from the worst playoff game in his long career. That still wasn’t enough to save the Spurs from the brink of an unusual early playoff elimination against the Dallas Mavericks. Josh Howard scored 28 points, seven in an early second-half spurt that put Dallas ahead to stay in a 99-90 victory Saturday.
Wade carries Heat past Hawks in Game 3 for a 2-1 lead
Hawks 78 at Heat 107
Dwyane Wade swished a 3-pointer, then turned and shook his hand like it was burning. Yep, Wade and the Miami Heat are that hot right now. Wade finished with 29 points and eight assists, Jermaine O’Neal added 22 points and 10 rebounds, and the Heat extended Atlanta’s decade-plus road playoff drought, beating the Hawks 107-78 Saturday night in Game 3 of their Eastern Conference first-round matchup. It was over early: Atlanta missed 17 of its first 19 shots, and a 25-6 Heat run to end the first half pushed the lead to 50-29.
Kobe scores 38 as Lakers pound Jazz for a 3-1 lead
Lakers 108 at Jazz 94
It took Kobe Bryant only a few minutes to end his shooting slump. Bryant scored Los Angeles’ first 11 points and once his teammates joined in, the Lakers overwhelmed the Jazz 108-94 on Saturday night and moved within one game of advancing to the second round. “It was important for me to come out and be a little more assertive,” said Bryant, who scored 38 two nights after one of his worst shooting games in years. Bryant went 16-for-24, erasing any memories of his 5-for-24 night Thursday in the Lakers’ only loss of the series.
Allen lifts Celtics to Game 2 win over Bulls:
(Bulls 115 at Celtics 118)
The Bulls came to the Garden on Monday with another upset on their minds, but the Celtics dug deep to hang on for the 118-115 win that evens the series at one game each.
Ray Allen picked the perfect time to snap out of his shooting slump. Allen made a tiebreaking 3-pointer with 2 seconds left and finished with 30 points, leading the Boston Celtics a 118-115 win over the Chicago Bulls in Game 2 of their playoff series Monday night. var pollWidth=250; Ben Gordon nearly carried Chicago to a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven series. He scored with 12.3 seconds left to tie it, and had a playoff career-high 42 points.
Spurs even series:
(Mavericks 84 at Spurs 105)
Tony Parker wasn’t about to let the Dallas Mavericks leave San Antonio with two wins. Parker walked off the court with 38 points, a comfortable lead and a roaring Spurs crowd cheering him back to the bench with a Game 2 victory minutes away. var pollWidth=250; Unlike the first game, Dallas was unable to pester Parker and the Spurs breezed to a 105-84 blowout over the Mavericks on Monday night. It evened the series and handed Dallas one of the worst losses in the history of the playoff rivalry.