Conference semifinals stuff!
#8 PHILADELPHIA 76ERS 82 @ #4 BOSTON CELTICS 81
EAST Semifinals * Game 2 * Series is tied, 1-1
The final score alone tells the story on how unpretty it was. But it was really the middle part of the game that was horrible to watch. Particularly for the Celtics. The Celtics only scored a total of 24 points in the second and third quarter (13 and 11, respectively).
The Sixers snapped out of their own scoring slump by rattling off 14 straight points at the end of the third quarter. But the Celtics snapped out of it themselves with Kevin Garnett waking up and back-to-back threes from Mickael Pietrus.
The Sixers and Celtics traded threes and leads before Evan Turner converted a go-ahead lay-up with 40 seconds left (ain’t nothing but a heartache!). Celtics had opportunities to take back the lead and later tie it but missed shots and critical turnovers cost Boston. Philadelphia made enough freethrows to keep the Celtics away and ultimately tie the series.
Not a pretty game but suddenly, Boston has their hands full. Philadelphia has some pretty damn good defense, too, and I’m sure these are the type of contests they expected to compete in. Basically, whoever scores 80 first wins the game.
Jrue Holiday finished with 18 points. Ray Allen came off the bench to score 17 points while KG had 15 points and 12 boards.
#3 LOS ANGELES LAKERS 90 @ #2 OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER 119
WEST Semifinals * Game 2 * Thunder LEAD series, 1-0
The Lakers looked like they were game against the Thunder. Metta World Peace/Ron Artest made a couple of threes and Andrew Bynum had a fast start. The Lakers led, 18-14, halfway through the first quarter.
Then all hell broke loose. They couldn’t seem to stop the Thunder blitz from all angles and players. Oklahoma City led by 15 by halftime and it ballooned to as many as 35 points. There were no Memphis miracles here; the Thunder kept pouring it on and on until the final buzzer. A statement was definitely made by the young and hungry Thunder.
The Thunder are pretty reckless with the ball… but the Lakers are terrible in forcing turnovers. OKC only had four turnovers all game.
Kobe Bryant and Andrew Bynum had 20 points each. Russell Westbrook scored 27 points while the scoring champion, Kevin Durant, scored 25. Kendrick Perkins… >=( …reaggravated his hip injury but should be okay next game. Ramon Sessions, in addition to already having a not-so-stellar postseason, sprained his ankle in the second quarter.
If there were any encouraging news from the Lakers’ side, Pau Gasol and Bynum stayed a good few minutes on their bench after the final buzzer sounded. They really seem to be taking this loss seriously… and after some no-shows in the Denver series, that was a good sign.
PHOTO CREDIT: 1) Charles Krupa/AP. 2) Sue Ogrocki/AP (photos edited by Payton Wales).