What a fun NBA night we had, a lot of grit and grind but every single favorite won it at the end.
The Pacers played an unbelievable game of basketball until the fourth quarter where a lot of young mistakes cost them the game, meanwhile the Pistons rallied to keep it close but couldn’t end up containing Giannis in the end. The Jazz look utterly defeated in their game against the Rockets.
All that and more as SportsTips.com have got you covered on our key takeaways from the game!
Boston Celtics vs Indiana Pacers (2-0)
The Pacers came in to Boston looking to bounce back after their tough loss last game and things looked good for them early. The Pacers came in scorching hot going on a 33 – 29 run in the first quarter thanks to big shots by Bogdanovic.
The Celtics were not to be counted out though, Kyrie Irving, Mr. Playoffs himself was simply unstoppable as the Pacers had no answer for him. Despite his great iso-plays, he played as a great facilitator to help other key players off the bench to have good nights which will be the key for the Celtics to go further. They got great contribution from Hayward with his 13 points off the bench and Tatum was unleashed with 26 points.
The Pacers game plan of the Sabonis and Bogdanovic pick and roll worked great for them all night, but things went sour in the 4th quarter. Despite going on a great run to allow them to go up by 2 in the last minute and a half, the Pacers looked like they had their blinders on as they only shot threes shooting zero 2-point shots in the fourth. Things went from sour to downright horrible when Tatum hit a three late to allow the Celtics to go up by 2 and after a time out to advance the ball with 10 seconds left, Wesley Matthews throws the ball to nobody leading to a turn over giving the Celtics a win.
Celtics Win 99 – 91
Top Scorer: Kyrie Irving – 36 Points
Top Assists: Kyrie Irving – 7 Assists
Top Rebounds: Al Horford – 10 Rebounds
Milwaukee Bucks vs Detroit Pistons (2-0)
Blake Griffin was confirmed out despite his probable status, but we don’t think he would of helped the demolition that occurred in the second half. The Pistons started out strong, the play to get Thon Maker to guard Giannis looked like a great move as he limited him to 10 points in the 1st half.
Young Luke Kennard is showing that he’s ready to take the leap in the playoffs leading the pack with his scoring outside, allowing some easy buckets for Drummond and Reggie Jackson from the space he created. Giannis couldn’t be stopped for long though, he got his gears started in the 3rd quarter, pushing the bucks to a 35-17 run.
The Bucks depth and power to score really shined here though with Pat Connaughton dropping 18 points off the bench and 20+ points from their starters in Middleton and Bledsoe.
Bucks Win 120 – 99
Top Scorer: Eric Bledsoe – 27 Points
Top Assists: TIED – Khris Middleton & Reggie Jackson – 8 Assists
Top Rebounds: Andre Drummond – 16 Rebounds
Houston Rockets vs Utah Jazz (2-0)
Not much to say about this one, but every single team that feared the Rockets (I’m looking at you Denver Nuggets) was right to fear them. The Rockets look unstoppable and the Jazz just look clearly outmatched in every single way.
We expected Snyder to make the defensive adjustments to slow down the pace of the game but Mike D’Antoni out played him here as he limited Joe Ingles touches and forcing Mitchell to play the point role. This was hard and against the grain of the whole new Jazz style where they look for Ingles to make plays. Gobert was limited as he became a liability defensively where Harden just simply danced on him all night on the easy switch.
The Jazz need Mitchell to take the reigns and become the hero in the series if the Jazz want to stay competitive, but both Rubio and Ingles can’t make a big difference in this series unless they start knocking threes down.
Rockets Win 118 – 98
Top Scorer: James Harden – 32 Points
Top Assists: James Harden – 10 Assists
Top Rebounds: James Harden – 13 Rebounds
Player of the Night: James Harden
Most Disappointing Team Performance: Indiana Pacers
Best Team Performance: Milwaukee Bucks