For a Monday night, there are only two games scheduled for the NBA Playoffs and we have a quick preview, tip times, and TV info for you. Check it all out below.
Tip Off @ 6:00 p.m. MST
Thunder lead series 1-0
After a horrible start to the game, the Memphis Grizzlies surged a comeback to start the second half in game one against the Okahoma City Thunder, but it wasn’t quite enough. The Thunder ended up pulling it out late thanks to a great defensive effort. Tonight, the defensive effort needs to be there all game if they want to head to Memphis up two games.
The Grizzlies have two bigs that really can control the game in Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph. Between the two of them in game one, they helped orchestrate the comeback that helped outscore the Thunder by 18 points in the third quarter. Randolph finished the game with 21 points and 11 rebounds, while Gasol finished with 16 points and 6 rebounds. On the Thunder side of things, Serge Ibaka had a great game and finished with 17 points, 9 rebounds, and 4 blocks.
In the first half when the Thunder opened up a huge lead, it was due to their two headed monster of Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant. The two combined to score 33 points in the first half. They ended up finishing the game combined with 56 points. The Thunder are more than likely going to win this series, but they can’t have a collapse on defense like they had in the third quarter. When they get to the next round, whether they play the Clippers or the Warriors, a defensive collapse in one quarter will hurt them to where they might not be able to fight their way back. As far as this game tonight goes, I think the Thunder will be a lot more focused on that issue and will pull out a win.
Prediction : Thunder lead 2-0
Tip Off @ 8:30 p.m. MST
Warriors lead series 1-0
The Clippers got upset at home after starting the game on a 12-1 run. The Warriors also got one of their best defenders, Andre Iguodala, into early foul trouble that made him a bit timid to start the game. The Warriors fought back to pull even with the Clippers and it was a close contest throughout the game.
The Clippers also had their own foul trouble when their big man, Blake Griffin, only ended up playing 19 minutes and fouling out of the game. The entire game was reffed extremely tight, and it could possibly be as a result of the comments from Warriors guard, Klay Thompson, prior to the game. Thompson talked about how Griffin flopped a lot and he couldn’t understand how “someone of that size can flop that easily.” Griffin, as well as everyone else on the court, didn’t get away with a lot.
Headed to game two, both teams have something to come out and prove. The Warriors are looking to prove that they can capitalize off of a strong game one performance and can head back to Oakland with a huge 2-0 lead on the series. The Clippers are looking to bounce back and try to retake control of the series. Since Chris Paul came over to the Clippers, they haven’t lost game one of a first round series, so Saturday afternoon was a first for them. It will also be interesting to see which coach has his guys ready to go more. Will Doc Rivers, who is an unbelievable coach, get his guys back on track, or will the unconventional style of Mark Jackson steal another one on the road?
Prediction: Series tied 1-1
Be sure to check back tomorrow as we recap all the action from tonight with video highlights as well as a quick recap. Also, we look ahead to Tuesday night in the NBA Playoffs, and we also bring you our “Morning Jazz” segment. Keep up with Purple and Blues for all your daily basketball info.