Great NBA Playoff Highlights

Great NBA Playoff Highlights

The just concluded NBA playoff semifinals were filled with a lot of great games, especially during the past weekend, when some of the teams were facing elimination. Some teams were able to rise to the occasion, while others wilted under the pressure. Here are the NBA playoff highlights and NBA playoff scores from this past weekend.

Cleveland Cavaliers vs Chicago Bulls

The Chicago Bulls had a chance to force a game six when they played the Cavaliers over the weekend, because they were playing at home, and had Pau Gasol back in the lineup, after he was forced to miss the previous two games due to a hamstring injury. Unfortunately for Chicago, they couldn’t get anything going, despite LeBron James having a terrible shooting night, Jimmy Butler shot 8-22 and finished with 20 points, while Derrick Rose, the only other Chicago player in double figures added 14 points on 7-16 shooting. The Bulls blew a great opportunity to force game 7, and were eliminated in front of their home crowd.

Atlanta Hawks vs Washington Wizards

The Hawks are happy to be moving on to the Eastern Conference Finals to face the Cleveland Cavaliers, after suffering a big scare against the Washington Wizards. They had a chance to eliminate the Wizards in game 6, but the game was played in D.C., where they had struggled during the series, with their only win coming in a game that Washington All Star, John Wall, missed. They came out strong in the first three quarters of the game, and had an eight point lead going into the fourth quarter, but the Wizards rallied back, and almost sent the game into overtime, but Paul Pierce’s last second three pointer to tie the game was waived off, because the ball was still on his fingertips when the time expired.

Golden State Warriors vs. Memphis Grizzlies

At the beginning, it looked like Memphis had a legitimate chance of defeating the Warriors, and making it to the Western Conference Finals, especially when the series was tied at 2-2. Unfortunately for the Grizzlies, they lost their best perimeter defender, which changed to series from a close one to a much easier series for the Warriors, because their guards could operate more freely without Tony Allen disrupting their rhythm. Allen was back in the lineup in game six, but it was apparent that he was still bothered by the hamstring injury, and was ineffective in the game. The lack of a defender to slow down Golden State’s All Star back court and their lack of offense, ended up doing in the Grizzlies, who couldn’t keep up with the high scoring Warriors at the end.

Houston Rockets vs Los Angeles Clippers

This was by far the most entertaining series in the second round of the playoffs, and one that will haunt the Clippers for a very long time. The series started with Chris Paul missing the first two games due to a hamstring injury, but the Clippers were able to split the first two games with the Rockets. The Series shifted back to Los Angeles, and the Clippers had Chris Paul back in the lineup, which helped them win the next two games, giving them a commanding 3-1 series lead. In game 5, the Rockets were able to blow out the Clippers and force a game 6, which most people expected the Clippers to win. True to expectations, the Clippers dominated most of game 6, which was played in Los Angeles, and at one point, had a 19 point lead in the second half. The Rockets were able to chip away at the lead and went into the 4th quarter down by 13. In the 4th quarter, Houston went on a 40-15 run, and ended up with a 119-107 win, forcing a game 7 in Houston on Sunday.

By the time game 7 started, the momentum had shifted to the Rockets, and they quickly took the lead. The Clippers didn’t help themselves out much, because they turned the ball over 18 times, and didn’t shoot the ball particularly well. Despite their struggles, the Clippers finally made a run with about five minutes left in the 4th quarter, and came within eight points of the Rockets, but Trevor Ariza hit a couple of timely threes, to put the game away for good, and he finished with 22 points, making 6-12 three pointers.

Now that the semifinals are over, it is time to look ahead to the Conference Finals, which begin on Tuesday, and more NBA playoff highlights and betting lines.

Eastern Conference Finals

Cleveland Cavaliers vs Atlanta Hawks

The Hawks won three of the four meetings between the two teams during the regular season, but so far during the playoffs, they have not been as dominant as they were during the regular season, which is why online sportsbooks are currently favoring the Cavaliers to win the series. The Cavaliers might be favored to win the series, but they have some issues that they are also dealing with, All Star forward Kevin Love, is expected to miss the rest of the playoffs, and point guard Kyrie Irvin is also dealing with foot injuries. Tristan Thompson played well in Love’s absence against the Bulls, but the Cavaliers cannot afford to lose Irvin to injury in this series.

Western Conference Finals

Houston Rockets vs Golden State Warriors

The Rockets will be hoping that their momentum from the Clippers series carries over into the Western Conference Finals, as they battle the team that had the best record in the NBA this season, and the league MVP. James Harden, who finished second in the MVP voting will likely be trying to prove that the voters got it wrong, so watch out for a dominant performance from him. During the regular season, the Warriors swept the four game series between the two teams, and will try to continue their dominance over Houston this season. Both teams are also very healthy right now, which should make this an exciting series with a chance of going all seven games. Right now, the Warriors are overwhelming favorites to win the series, with a money line of -800, and +500 for Houston to win, so the NBA betting trends are moving towards the Warriors to win the series.

 
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