Cavaliers shun Pacers, Spurs kick Grizzlies in NBA playoff openers

Los Angeles (AFP) – The NBA champion Cleveland Cavaliers transient with a 109-108 feat over a Indiana Pacers on Saturday in a opening diversion of a 2017 playoffs.

Indiana’s C.J. Miles missed a wide-open burst shot during a buzzer after a Cavaliers, as they mostly did in a loss stages of a regular-season, let a diversion get difficult toward a end.

“It doesn’t matter how we get a win in a playoffs. We’re one-up,” pronounced Cavs luminary LeBron James, who led all scorers with 32 points and also handed out 13 assists and pulled down 6 rebounds.

Elsewhere on Saturday, Kawhi Leonard equalled his career playoff high with 32 points as a San Antonio Spurs seized control in a third entertain en track to a 111-82 feat over a Memphis Grizzlies in diversion one of their first-round Western Conference series.

James has now won 18 playoff openers, though he and a Cavs cut it tighten in this one.

James missed a three-pointer with 20 seconds left and a Pacers had a turn entrance out of a timeout.

Miles got loose, though his bid bounced off a rim.

Pacers star Paul George finished with 29 points. His three-pointer with 4 seconds left had cut a Cavs’ lead to one point, environment a theatre for Miles’s try during a game-winner.

George complained after a diversion that he should have been a one to try a diversion winner.

“Situations like that, we gotta get a final shot,” George said.

Kyrie Irving scored 23 points and Kevin Love combined 17, 15 of them in a initial half for Cleveland, who led by 12 points late in a third entertain and were adult by 10 with 9:04 remaining before a Pacers rallied.

Jeff Teague’s three-pointer with 3:31 to play put a Pacers adult by dual — after 6 true dull security for a Cavs.

But James immediately responded with a pushing asperse and a Pacers wouldn’t get brazen again.

In San Antonio, a Spurs led 74-64 with only underneath dual mins to play in a third entertain though sealed a entertain on a 10-0 run. The Spurs combined a initial 9 points of a fourth entertain to accumulate 93-64 lead.

Leonard seized control in a third quarter, pumping in 15 points — a same volume as a whole Memphis group — before sitting out a fourth with a diversion already in hand.

The Spurs are creation their 20th true post-season appearance, tied for third all-time.

Game dual of a best-of-seven array is Monday in San Antonio.

In Toronto, Giannis Antetokounmpo tallied 28 points and 8 rebounds as a Milwaukee Bucks manhandled a Toronto Raptors 97-83 to open their Eastern Conference series.

Malcolm Brogdon delivered 16 points for a Bucks, Greg Monroe finished with 14 points and 15 rebounds, Tony Snell and Matthew Dellavedova combined 11 points any for a Bucks.

DeMar DeRozan led a Raptors with 27 points and grabbed 9 rebounds, Serge Ibaka combined 19 points and 14 rebounds, and Jonas Valanciunas had 9 points and 9 rebounds.

The Raptors’ first-game woes continued as they fell to 0-9 in openers of initial turn playoff series. They are a gloomy 1-10 altogether in diversion ones.

– Johnson strikes final blow –

In Los Angeles, Joe Johnson strike a purchase leader as time expired, lifting a Utah Jazz to a 97-95 feat over a Los Angeles Clippers during Staples Center.

Jazz star centre Rudy Gobert went down clutching his left knee reduction than 20 seconds into a competition after bumping knees with Clippers brazen Luc Mbah a Moute.

Gobert, who had to be helped off a justice and carried into a locker room, is approaching to bear a captivating inflection imaging (MRI) indicate Saturday night to establish a astringency of a injury.

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