What an intriguing weekend and Monday it has been in the NBA Playoffs, with all eight series now underway, with three games playing their second game last night in what proved to be a hugely intriguing trio of games.
With the Atlanta Hawks and New Orleans Pelicans both earning surprise road wins over the Cleveland Cavaliers and Los Angeles Clippers respectively to earn the eighth seed spots in the Western and Eastern Conferences, the playoffs began in earnest on Saturday and Sunday, with the first three second match in the series taking place Monday.
Before we go into what happened on Monday, let’s first recap how things stand after the first game in each of the NBA Finals games that took place over the weekend.
NBA Finals – First Round (best of 7)
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 18: Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors shoots over Aaron Gordon #50 of the Denver Nuggets in the second half during Game Two of the Western Conference First Round NBA Playoffs at Chase Center on April 18, 2022 in San Francisco, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Utah Jazz 99-93 Dallas Mavericks
Minnesota Timberwolves 130-117 Memphis Grizzlies
Toronto Raptors 111-131 Philadelphia 76ers
Denver Nuggets 107-123 Golden State Warriors
Atlanta Hawks 91-115 Miami Heat
Brooklyn Nets 114-115 Boston Celtics
Chicago Bulls 86-93 Milwaukee Bucks
New Orleans Pelicans 99-110 Phoenix Suns
The big surprise came in the second game on that list when the second seed in the West, the Memphis Grizzlies went down to a heavy home court defeat to the Minnesota Timberwolves with Anthony Edwards top scoring with 36 points and Karl Anthony Towns adding 29 more as the Wolves claimed what could be a very important win on the road.
Steph Curry’s timely return from injury inspired the Golden State Warriors to a solid win over the Denver Nuggets, while the Philadelphia 76ers produced a fine display to thrash the Toronto Raptors by 20 points in their opener.
There were wins for the top seed in each of the two conferences with the Miami Heat and Phoenix Suns landing wins over the Atlanta Hawks and New Orleans Pelicans respectively.
NBA Finals – First Round – Game 2 Results
Toronto Raptors 97-112 Philadelphia 76ers (76ers lead 2-0)
Utah Jazz 104-110 Dallas Mavericks (Series tied 1-1)
Denver Nuggets 106-126 Golden State Warriors (Warriors lead 2-0)
The Philadelphia 76ers moved into a commanding 2-0 lead in their series with the Toronto Raptors last night, with Joel Embiid hitting 31 points and Tyrese Maxey having another big game as he netted 23 points.
It was another solid win for the 76ers although they will be hoping for more from James Harden, who collected just 14 points in over 40 minutes of play in the game.
Utah Jazz passed up the chance to go 2-0 up on the road against the Dallas Mavericks, who are still without their star man Luka Doncic. However, Jalen Brunson stepped up to the mark hitting 41 points and 8 rebounds as he led the team to a come from behind 110-104 victory to tie the series before the teams make their way to Utah.
Then in the final game of the night, Steph Curry got the better of Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets with Curry confirming his return from injury with 34 points, leading his Golden State Warriors team to a fine 20-point victory over the Nuggets who will hope they can find some better form on their home court.
Tonight we see Atlanta and Miami, Minnesota and Memphis and New Orleans and Phoenix all meet in their second game of their respective series
It promises to be another exciting night of NBA action as we head towards the two home court games for the lower ranked seeds in the playoffs.
FEATURED IMAGE – PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA – APRIL 18: Pascal Siakam #43 of the Toronto Raptors and Joel Embiid #21 of the Philadelphia 76ers challenge for the ball during the fourth quarter of Game Two of the Eastern Conference First Round at Wells Fargo Center on April 18, 2022 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)