Oklahoma City Thunder 106, Denver Nuggets 89
They say a playoff series doesn’t really start until a road team wins, but you have to wonder if the Nuggets are totally overmatched. In Game 1, they got beat by two guys. Last night, all the Thunder contributed. Losing two games in such different ways kind of signifies that the Thunder are just plain better than the Nuggets.
San Antonio Spurs 93, Memphis Grizzlies 87
Manu Ginobili played, and to hear Sean Elliott tell it, it was the second coming of the flu game. In reality, he had 17 points on 13 shots, seven rebounds, four assists and five turnovers. Good enough for the win, but not a legendary performance. Of course, according to Sean Elliott, Steve Novak making a free throw to push the lead from 34 to 35 would be the San Antonio equivalent of Michael Jordan’s last shot.
Los Angeles Lakers 87, New Orleans Hornets 78
A much needed win for Los Angeles, who held the Hornets to a miniscule 90 points per 100 possessions. Sure, the Lakers only put up 101 per 100, but that defensive improvement was the key to their win. Next step, somehow convincing Pau Gasol to score more than eight points in a game. Good luck.