Photo Credit: Michael McLoone-USA TODAY Sports
NBA playoffs roundup: Heat best Bucks in injury-riddled Game 1
Heat 130, Bucks 117
Jimmy Butler had 35 points and 11 assists, and the visiting Miami Heat defeated the Milwaukee Bucks — who played most of the game without Giannis Antetokounmpo — 130-117 in Game 1 of an Eastern Conference first-round playoff series Sunday.
Bam Adebayo scored 22 points for the eighth-seeded Heat, who were playing less than 48 hours after qualifying for the playoffs by beating Chicago in a play-in elimination game. Kevin Love had 18 points, Caleb Martin and Gabe Vincent added 15 apiece, and Tyler Herro scored 12 before being sidelined for good in the second quarter because of a broken right hand.
Antetokounmpo suffered a lower back contusion when he fell to the floor in the first quarter. He stayed in the game for a bit before going to the locker room and returned briefly early in the second quarter before leaving the game for good. He finished with six points and three rebounds in 11 minutes. Khris Middleton led Milwaukee with 33 points. Bobby Portis had 21 points, while Jrue Holiday added 16 points and 16 assists.
Adebayo and Martin both converted three-point plays, Love made two 3-pointers, and Duncan Robinson added a late trey to help Miami score 24 points in the final 4:49 of the third quarter to open a 102-88 lead heading into the fourth. Milwaukee closed within eight points five times in the fourth quarter but didn’t get any closer.
Lakers 128, Grizzlies 112
Rui Hachimura came off the bench to score a team-high 29 points, LeBron James and Anthony Davis both posted double-doubles, and seventh-seeded Los Angeles scored a road win over No. 2 seed Memphis to spark the Lakers to a 1-0 series lead.
In his sixth career playoff game, Hachimura erupted for a playoff career-high in scoring by shooting 11-for-14, including 5-of-6 from beyond the 3-point arc. All five of his made 3-pointers came in the second half. He was one of four Lakers to score at least 21 points, joined by Austin Reaves with 23. Davis added 22 points, and James scored 21.
Los Angeles used two big runs in the fourth quarter to take command, the latter a game-ending 15-0 outburst three minutes after Memphis All-Star Ja Morant went to the locker room with a hand injury. Memphis played the final 5:48 without Morant, who finished with 18 points.
Clippers 115, Suns 110
Kawhi Leonard poured in 38 points during his first playoff game in 22 months to lead Los Angeles past host Phoenix in Game 1 of their Western Conference first-round series.
Leonard was 13-of-24 from the field and added five rebounds and five assists in his first postseason contest since tearing the ACL in his right knee against the Utah Jazz in June 2021. Eric Gordon added 19 points for the fifth-seeded Clippers.
Kevin Durant had 27 points, 11 assists, and nine rebounds in his first playoff game for the fourth-seeded Suns. It marked the first time Phoenix lost in nine games with Durant on the court. Devin Booker scored 26 points, Torrey Craig added 22, and Deandre Ayton had 18 points and eight rebounds for the Suns.
Nuggets 109, Timberwolves 80
Jamal Murray had 24 points, eight rebounds, and eight assists, Nikola Jokic finished with 13 points and 14 rebounds, and the host Denver Nuggets routed the Minnesota Timberwolves 109-80 in Game 1 of their first-round Western Conference playoff series on Sunday night.
Michael Porter Jr. had 18 points and 11 rebounds, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 15 points, Bruce Brown added 14 points, and Aaron Gordon had 13 points for the top-seeded Nuggets.Anthony Edwards scored 18 points, Karl-Anthony Towns had 11 points and 10 rebounds, Jaylen Nowell scored 12 points, Kyle Anderson added 11, and Rudy Gobert finished with 13 rebounds for Minnesota.
–Field Level Media