Miami Eases Past Bucks
Miami — LeBron James has never taken fewer shots in a playoff game than he did last night, which at first glance might seem like a good thing for the Milwaukee Bucks.
It was not.
James scored 27 points on 9 for 11 shooting — finishing two assists shy of a triple-double — while Ray Allen scored 20 off the bench and the defending champion Heat picked up where they left off in the NBA playoffs a year ago, never trailing on the way to beating the Bucks 110-87 in Game 1 of an Eastern Conference first-round series.
Dwyane Wade scored 16, Chris Bosh added 15 and Chris Andersen finished with 10 on 4 for 4 shooting for the Heat, who opened their title defense by holding Milwaukee to 42 percent shooting and outrebounding the Bucks 46-31.
Brandon Jennings scored 26 points and Monta Ellis added 22 for the Bucks, who have not won the opening game of a playoff series since May 2001.
Game 2 is tomorrow in Miami.
James had taken only 11 shots in a playoff game twice before, and his postseason per-game average entering Sunday was just under 21 tries. But with the way he controlled the game Sunday, he didn’t exactly need to shoot.
That’s probably not the best of signs for the Bucks, who came into the series with Jennings predicting his team would oust the reigning champions in six games.
Spurs 91, Lakers 79
San Antonio — Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker scored 18 points each and San Antonio beat Los Angeles in Game 1 of their Western Conference first-round series.
Tim Duncan added 17 points and 10 rebounds, Matt Bonner had 10 points and Kawhi Leonard had eight points and 11 rebounds for San Antonio.
Dwight Howard had 20 points and 15 rebounds, Steve Nash scored 16 points and Pau Gasol added 16 points and 16 rebounds for Los Angeles.
Despite the double-doubles from Howard and Gasol, the Lakers failed to take full advantage of their inside presence, much to the consternation of the Kobe Bryant, who watched the national broadcast.
Pacers 107, Hawks 90
Indianapolis — Paul George scored 23 points and recorded his first playoff triple double, leading Indiana past Atlanta for a 1-0 lead in the Eastern Conference series.
George made just 3 of 13 shots but was 17 of 18 from the free-throw line, had 11 rebounds and 12 assists. George Hill added 18 points despite playing with a left groin injury. It’s the first time since 2006 that the Pacers have opened a playoff series with a win.
The best-of-seven series resumes Wednesday at Indy.
On Sunday, the Central Division champs played more like the team that was contending for the No. 2 seed rather than the one stumbling to five losses in its previous seven games.
Atlanta was led by Jeff Teague with 21 points and Josh Smith with 15.