|Written by Michael|
Bet on the NBAIn Tuesday night's NBA Playoffs matchups, it was all about the favorites – none of the underdogs managed to pull out a victory.
The Mavericks rolled over the Trail Blazers, the Celtics fended off the Knicks, and the Magic evened the series against the Hawks. With these series now moving to the lower seeds' home courts, let's look at how last night's games played out.
In the sole Western Conference game played Tuesday, the Dallas Mavericks played a close game against the Portland Trail Blazers through three quarters. But in the fourth, the Blazers only scored 17 points to the Mavs' 28, leading to a 101-89 victory. Dirk Nowitzki closed the game out with 11 points for Dallas in the final minutes of the game, sealing it for the Mavericks and giving them the 2-0 series lead.
In the Eastern Conference, the Boston Celtics took until the final seconds of the game to put it away against the New York Knicks. With another game winning shot (this time from Kevin Garnett), the Celtics went up and went on to win 96-93. Carmelo Anthony had 42 points for New York, but the loss of Chauncey Billups really hurt the team, as Boston's offense was more fluid. A 30-point third quarter put the game just out of reach.
The Orlando Magic got another huge game out of Dwight Howard, and this time it was enough to beat the Atlanta Hawks. Howard scored 33 points and got 19 rebounds as the Magic went on to win 88-82, evening the series at one game each. The Hawks had no real answer after being outscored 32-20 in the second quarter and putting up only 12 points in the third. With the next game in Atlanta, the Hawks will try to bounce back and take the lead in the series.
So far, the 2011 NBA Playoffs are coming out just as expected, with only a couple of exceptions in Los Angeles and San Antonio. While some of the top teams are not playing as well as anticipated, such as Chicago, the top seeds are still winning their games at home. After a few more second games tonight, most of the series will move on to Game Three by Thursday night and this weekend, where the underdogs will attempt to use home-court advantage to pull off some upsets.