Philadelphia 76ers 86, Miami Heat 82
Yesterday at my in-laws’ Easter celebration, my wife’s cousin’s husband went upstairs to get something to drink when there were about two minutes left in this game and the Heat were up by six. Maybe 10 minutes later, after extracting himself from the kind of conversations you get in to when a bunch of relatives get together, he ended up back downstairs and said, “Guess I picked a bad time to leave that Heat game, huh?” That’s what a 12-point swing in 95 seconds will make you say, I guess. Crazy ending.
Boston Celtics 101, New York Knicks 89
So ends the Knicks’ season. A sixth seed that finished two games above .500, played one good game and one great game in the playoffs, then got blown out at home twice to end their first trip to the playoffs in seven years. Now they’re left with a team that owes $43 million next year to Amar’e Stoudemire, Carmelo Anthony, Ronny Turiaf, Renaldo Balkman, Toney Douglas and Bill Walker in an offseason that will surely see the salary cap shrink. They’ve got options on Chauncey Billups and Landry Fields, but that’s a pretty brutal team when adding players is about to become pretty tough. Wonder if Knicks fans think it’s worth it.
Atlanta Hawks 88, Orlando Magic 85
The Hawks are on the verge of pulling off an upset that I’m not sure how I feel about. On one hand, it would be a No. 5 over a No. 4, which is hardly a big deal. On the other hand, the Magic seemed like a lot better team than the Hawks in the regular season. Kinda confusing, at least for me. Nonetheless, Orlando really stinks right now, failing to shoot better than the .459 league-average field goal percentage mark in every game of this series, despite Dwight Howard’s playoff-leading .667 rate. Make some shots, other guys.
New Orleans Hornets 93, Los Angeles Lakers 88
Another great game for Chris Paul — 27 points, 15 assists and 13 rebounds — who is probably this week’s best point guard in the NBA. Another great win for the Hornets, who tied up this series and guaranteed a third playoff game in New Orleans. However, you get the feeling that the Lakers are still just waiting for the second round. This series feels too much like last year’s matchup with the Thunder, where Los Angeles kind of sleep-walked through their games until needing to get some wins. But if the Hornets can steal another win on the road, it’s a different story. Should be interesting.