NBA Daily Roundup
An NBA daily recap of 2014-15 NBA season games, all on one page. Bookmark this NBA game roundup page and hit it daily. Also read nba game previews and daily stat leaders, and watch daily NBA video highlights.
NBA DAILY FOR SATURDAY, APRIL 25
Recaps of NBA games played Friday
James Harden, Dwight Howard notch career playoff bests; Rockets up 3-0
The AP reports: DALLAS -- James Harden deferred to Dwight Howard and his role players when Houston swept two games at home to open a first-round series against Dallas.
The MVP candidate took over in the game that put the Rockets on the verge of Harden's first postseason series victory with Howard in their second season together -- even interrupting his big man on a question about the best rebounding game of the center's playoff career.
Harden scored a playoff career-high 42 points, Howard had his postseason best with 26 rebounds and the Rockets beat the Mavericks 130-128 on Friday night for a 3-0 lead in their first-round series... The high-scoring game was Dallas' first without effectively banished point guard Rajon Rondo, and Monta Ellis had a playoff career-high 34 points to match Dirk Nowitzki.
But Ellis missed a potential tying jumper just before the buzzer, leaving Dallas to face a fourth straight year without winning a postseason series since taking the franchise's first championship.
John Wall, Paul Pierce help Wiz hold off Raptors, take 3-0 lead
The AP reports: WASHINGTON -- John Wall drew choruses of "M-V-P!" from the crowd by producing 19 points and 15 assists, 37-year-old Paul Pierce hit two key late 3-pointers, and the Washington Wizards closed in on a first-round playoff sweep by beating the Toronto Raptors 106-99 on Friday night.
Six Wizards scored in double figures, including Marcin Gortat, who had 24 points and 13 rebounds. Pierce's 18 points were highlighted by one 3 that capped a 10-2 run with 2 minutes left, and another with 16.3 seconds remaining after Toronto got within three points.
After the second, Pierce turned to the stands with arms aloft, nodded and yelled, "That's why I'm here!" ... Paced by DeMar DeRozan, who scored a team playoff-record 20 points in the first quarter and 32 overall, Toronto led by as many as 10 points early. But the Raptors were too inconsistent, just as they have been all series.
Spurs dominate Clippers, 100-73
The AP reports: SAN ANTONIO -- Kawhi Leonard has a passion for playing defense, but the San Antonio Spurs forward does not want to be regarded a one-dimensional player. So, a day after earning NBA defensive player of the year honors, Leonard had an offensive outburst to help San Antonio break the Los Angeles Clippers' "spirit" in a blowout victory. Leonard had a postseason career-high 32 points, and the Spurs never trailed in dominating the Clippers 100-73 on Friday night to take a 2-1 lead in their first-round series... The Clippers scored a franchise postseason low, and their 11 points in the third were their fewest in any quarter this season. Los Angeles shot 34 percent from the field and 26 percent from 3-point range.
InsideHoops.com notes: The Spurs shot 52.6%, the Clippers just 34.1%. The Spurs had 25 assists, the Clippers 14. In the win, Kawhi Leonard shot 13-of-18 for 32 points, and had three steals and two blocks. Boris Diaw scored 15 off the bench. Danny Green added 11. In the loss, Blake Griffin had 14 points (but on 15 shots), 10 rebounds and five assists. Austin Rivers scored 11 off the bench -- but on 11 shots. DeAndre Jordan scored 10. Chris Paul had a miserable outing, shooting 3-of-11 for seven points, four assists and six turnovers. The Spurs now lead the series 2-1.
NBA DAILY FOR FRIDAY, APRIL 24
Recaps of NBA games played Thursday
James scores 31, Cavs beat Celts 103-95 for 3-0 series lead
The AP reports: BOSTON -- LeBron James got to the arena early. When he left the Cleveland Cavaliers had a chance to put an early end to the series.
James scored 31 points in his first playoff game in Boston since a masterful performance in the 2012 postseason. And Cleveland moved one win away from a sweep in its first playoff series in five years with a 103-95 victory Thursday night... [J.R.] Smith had his best game of the series with 15 points... Kevin Love added 23 points for Cleveland, none bigger than two 3-pointers after Boston cut the lead to 95-92 on Evan Turner's 3-pointer with 2:45 left. Those shots put Cleveland up 101-93 with 26 seconds to go... Turner had 19 points and Avery Bradley added 18 for Boston while Isaiah Thomas managed just five points and missed seven of nine shots after scoring 22 in the first two games.
Rose scores 34, Bulls hold off Bucks 113-106 in double OT
The AP reports: MILWAUKEE -- Jimmy Butler intercepted the errant pass and darted the other way for a fastbreak basket.
Finally, the Chicago Bulls were able to shake free from the pesky Milwaukee Bucks.
Derrick Rose scored 34 points, and Butler added 24 in the Bulls' 113-106 double-overtime victory Thursday night to take a 3-0 lead in their Eastern Conference playoff series.
Butler got the second overtime off to a rousing start, converting the bad pass from Giannis Antetokounmpo into a dunk that started an 8-0 run that gave Chicago a 109-101 lead with 2:44 left. It was one of four steals in the final period for Chicago... Antetokounmpo had 25 points and Khris Middleton added 18 for Milwaukee, which went scoreless for more than 6 minutes between the first and second overtimes... [Rose] finished 12 of 23 from the field and 5 of 9 from 3-point range, adding eight assists and five rebounds.
Warriors erase 20-point hole, beat Pelicans 123-119 in OT
The AP reports: NEW ORLEANS -- Stephen Curry scored 40 points, including a 3-pointer in the final seconds of regulation to complete a 20-point, fourth-quarter comeback, and the Golden State Warriors beat New Orleans 123-119 in overtime Thursday night to take a 3-0 lead in their first-round playoff series.
Curry hit seven 3s in all, including one to start overtime that gave the Warriors the lead for good.
Klay Thompson had 28 points for the Warriors, who trailed 89-69 after three quarters, then outscored New Orleans 39-19 over the next 12 minutes.
Anthony Davis had 29 points and 15 rebounds for the Pelicans, but his missed free throw with 9.6 seconds left - as the crowd chanted "M-V-P!" - allowed Curry's late 3 to tie it.
NBA DAILY FOR THURSDAY, APRIL 23
Recaps of NBA games played Wednesday
Millsap scores 19, Hawks hold off Nets 96-91 for 2-0 lead
The AP reports: ATLANTA -- Paul Millsap answered all those questions about his shoulder. Al Horford didn't let a dislocated finger slow him down.
As for the Hawks, they've yet to show the form that carried them to the top of the Eastern Conference.
No. 1-seeded Atlanta again survived a tougher-than-expected test from the Brooklyn Nets, holding on for a 96-91 victory and a 2-0 lead in their playoff series Wednesday night... Millsap, who missed five games near the end of the season with a sprained right shoulder, ditched a pad that he felt restricted his shooting motion. He responded by hitting 7 of 11 shots and finished with 19 points.
Horford also looked fine, scoring 14 points while leading the Hawks with 13 rebounds and seven assists. He did it all with his right hand taped, after dislocating his pinky finger in Game 1... It went down to the wire. Deron Williams missed an open 15-foot jumper that would've tied it with about 10 seconds to go. Korver rebounded, was fouled and made two free throws to clinch Atlanta's win.
Grizzlies take 2-0 series lead, beating Trail Blazers 97-82
The AP reports: MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Known for pounding opponents inside with Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph, the Memphis Grizzlies are showing they can be just as effective outside the paint.
Hey, they can even shoot 3-pointers.
Mike Conley and Courtney Lee each scored 18 points, and the Grizzlies beat Portland 97-82 Wednesday night to grab the franchise's first 2-0 lead in a playoff series... Gasol had 15 points, and Randolph and Beno Udrih added 10 apiece.
LaMarcus Aldridge led Portland with 24 points and 14 rebounds, and he also had four blocks with two steals. Damian Lillard added 18 points but the Trail Blazers lost their first two playoff games for the first time since 2011, when they fell in six games to Dallas.
Duncan and Leonard help Spurs beat Clippers 111-107 in OT
The AP reports: LOS ANGELES -- Three days from his 39th birthday, Tim Duncan keeps getting better with age. He smartly stayed on the court while playing the last eight minutes with five fouls, and recovered from a woeful fourth quarter to steady the Spurs in overtime.
Duncan scored 28 points and fellow NBA Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard added 23 to help San Antonio beat the Los Angeles Clippers 111-107 on Wednesday night, tying their Western Conference playoff series at 1-1... Duncan apologized to his teammates after going 1 of 5 in the fourth, when Manu Ginobili fouled out and Tony Parker was already gone with a right Achilles' injury... Duncan made up for it in overtime, scoring four straight points, and Patty Mills had eight of his 18 off the bench to give the Spurs a road split... Blake Griffin had his first career playoff triple-double of 29 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists, but had a costly turnover with 11 seconds left in regulation... DeAndre Jordan had 20 points and 15 rebounds for the Clippers, but he was just 4 of 12 from the line in the fourth. Los Angeles missed 17 free throws and had 11 turnovers in the game.
NBA DAILY FOR WEDNESDAY, APRIL 22
Recaps of NBA games played Tuesday
LeBron James, Kyrie Irving take over to hold off C's, give Cavs 2-0 lead
The AP reports: CLEVELAND -- The Celtics wouldn't go away, and then LeBron James showed them the door.
James scored 30 points -- 15 in the fourth quarter -- and Kyrie Irving added 26 as the Cleveland Cavaliers finally shook off Boston for a 99-91 victory Tuesday night to take a 2-0 lead in their opening-round series.
James moved past Hall of Famer Jerry West on the career playoff scoring list and made sure the Cavs didn't slip up at home. He took over the game down the stretch, and he and Irving, playing in just his second postseason game, combined for all of Cleveland's 24 points in the final period and the Cavs' final 28 over the last 17:29... Timofey Mozgov added 16 points, Kevin Love had 13 and Tristan Thompson had 11 rebounds for Cleveland, which has had a tougher time than expected with a young Boston team.
Isaiah Thomas scored 22 points for the Celtics, who scrapped and clawed until the final minutes. Boston's bench outscored Cleveland's 51-7, but the Celtics couldn't stop James and Irving when it mattered most.
John Wall has 26 points, 17 assists to power Wizards over Raptors
The AP reports: TORONTO -- John Wall had 26 points and 17 assists, Bradley Beal scored 28 points and the Washington Wizards beat the Toronto Raptors 117-106 on Tuesday night to take a 2-0 lead in their first-round playoff series.
Marcin Gortat scored 16 points, Otto Porter had 15 and Paul Pierce added 10 for the Wizards, who host Game 3 on Friday night.
Jonas Valanciunas had 15 points and 10 rebounds and Sixth Man Award winner Lou Williams scored 20 points for the Raptors, who have lost four straight playoff games over the past two seasons... DeMar DeRozan scored 20 points, Patrick Patterson had 15 and Amir Johnson added 10 for Toronto, which has won just one playoff series in six previous postseason appearances.
All-Star guard Kyle Lowry, who fouled out of Game 1 with seven points after missing eight of 10 shots, struggled again. Lowry limped to the locker room midway through the fourth quarter and did not return. He finished with six points on 3-of-10 shooting.
Howard and Harden lead Rockets over Mavericks 111-99
The AP reports: HOUSTON -- Dwight Howard scored 28 points and James Harden added 24 to help the Houston Rockets coast to a 111-99 victory over the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday night to take a 2-0 lead in the Western Conference playoff series.
Howard and childhood friend Josh Smith dominated early in the fourth quarter to help the Rockets pull away.
The Mavericks scored the first four points of the fourth quarter to take a three-point lead. But with Harden on the bench, Houston scored the next 11 points, powered by three alley-oop passes from Smith to Howard, to take a 92-84 lead with about 8 minutes left.
Smith, who connected with Howard on six alley-oop passes, finished with 15 points, nine assists and eight rebounds.
NBA DAILY FOR TUESDAY, APRIL 21
Recaps of NBA games played Monday
Butler scores 31, Bulls beat Bucks 91-82 to go up 2-0
The AP reports: CHICAGO -- Jimmy Butler was simply following orders from Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah.
He kept shooting and the ball kept going in.
Butler set a playoff career-high for the second straight game with 31 points, and the Chicago Bulls beat the Milwaukee Bucks 91-82 on Monday night to take a 2-0 lead in their first-round series.
After scoring 25 points in Game 1, Butler trumped that with another terrific performance. He was at his best down the stretch, scoring 14 points in the fourth quarter... Rose scored all of his 15 points in the second half after dominating in the series opener.
Pau Gasol added 11 points, 16 rebounds and four blocks. Mike Dunleavy Jr. scored 12 points. Noah grabbed 19 rebounds and the third-seeded Bulls dominated on the glass 64-48 while taking a commanding lead in the series... Khris Middleton led the sixth-seeded Bucks with 22 points, and Michael Carter-Williams scored 12.
Warriors beat Pelicans 97-87 to take 2-0 series lead
The AP reports: OAKLAND, Calif. -- Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr likes to say his team teeters on "explosive and careless" basketball, pulling off an astonishing play one moment and a perplexing one the next.
Kerr saw both extremes Monday night.
And the better half was just good enough to defend home court.
Klay Thompson scored 26 points, Stephen Curry had 22 points and six assists and the Warriors regrouped from an early deficit to beat the New Orleans Pelicans 97-87 and take a 2-0 lead in their first-round playoff series... Davis had 26 points and 10 rebounds, and Gordon scored 23 points for a Pelicans team that played with more poise and passion than it did in the series opener... The Pelicans still pulled within one in the final minutes before Draymond Green and center Andrew Bogut - Golden State's defensive stoppers - helped the Warriors shut down Davis and New Orleans again. Green finished with 14 points, 12 rebounds and five assists.
NBA DAILY FOR MONDAY, APRIL 20
Recaps of NBA games played Sunday
LeBron James, Kyrie Irving lead way as Cavs drop Celtics in postseason return
The AP reports: CLEVELAND -- More than hour after his first playoff game with LeBron James and Kevin Love, Kyrie Irving made a statement more profound than anything he did on the floor.
"We," Irving said, "are the Big 3. We have really great players on this team, but we set the tone." Tone set. Irving scored 30 points in his playoff debut, James added 20 in his first postseason game with Cleveland in five years and Love shook off a slow start to record a double-double, leading the Cavaliers to a 113-100 victory in Game 1 over the Boston Celtics on Sunday.
Irving made five 3-pointers and Love, another postseason rookie, added 19 points -- 13 in the second half -- and 12 rebounds... Isaiah Thomas scored 22 points to lead the seventh-seeded Celtics. They will try to even the best-of-7 series in Game 2 on Tuesday night.
Hawks thwart Nets' comeback attempts to take series opener
The AP reports: ATLANTA -- Banged up and bruised, the Atlanta Hawks survived their first test as the top seed in the Eastern Conference.
They were just good enough against the Brooklyn Nets. Leading nearly the entire game but struggling to put the No. 8 seed away, the Hawks got 21 points from Kyle Korver and shook off another injury to beat Brooklyn 99-92 in Game 1 of the opening-round playoff series Sunday night.
All-Star center Al Horford dislocated his right pinkie finger going for a rebound early in the fourth quarter. X-rays were negative, and he finished the game with his shooting hand heavily taped, giving Atlanta another concern on top of forward Paul Millsap, who looked out of sorts after missing five games late in the season with a sprained right shoulder. He managed just six points on 2-of-11 shooting... Brooklyn finished 22 games behind the Hawks and slipped into the playoffs on the final day. But with Joe Johnson and Brook Lopez each scoring 17 points, they didn't look overmatched by a team that won the season series 4-0 and earned a No. 1 seed for the first time since 1994.
Beno Udrih's 20 off bench lead Grizzlies' rout of Blazers in Game 1
The AP reports: MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Beno Udrih is doing his best to make sure the Memphis Grizzlies can ease Mike Conley and Tony Allen back into the lineup from their injuries.
Udrih scored 20 points in the best playoff game of his career, and the Grizzlies never trailed in routing the Portland Trail Blazers 100-86 on Sunday night in Game 1 of the Western Conference first-round series... In his 44th career playoff game, Udrih finished with seven assists and seven rebounds -- the first reserve to do that in the postseason since Nick Van Exel in May 10, 2003, for Dallas at Sacramento... Randolph had 16 points and 11 rebounds, and Marc Gasol added 15 points and 11 rebounds. Mike Conley finished with 16 points and didn't play the fourth quarter. Jeff Green had 11.
LaMarcus Aldridge led Portland with 32 points while taking more shots than anyone had ever taken against Memphis in the postseason, going 13 of 34. Damian Lillard added 14 points, shooting 5 of 21 overall and 0 of 6 beyond the arc. Nicolas Batum had 15 points. The Trail Blazers have lost five straight overall.
Griffin, CP3 lead Clippers past Spurs in Game 1
The AP reports: LOS ANGELES -- Blake Griffin accelerated through the paint and threw down a vicious dunk right on Aron Baynes' head in the third quarter. A few minutes later, Griffin did it again to the same poor San Antonio center. After three years of early-round failures, the Los Angeles Clippers are hungry for their first major taste of postseason success. As Griffin proved, they'll jump all over the defending champion Spurs as many times as necessary to advance. Chris Paul scored 32 points, Griffin added 26 points and 12 rebounds, and the Clippers surged in the second half for a 107-92 victory Sunday night in their first-round series opener. Jamal Crawford added 17 points as the Clippers stayed comfortably ahead down the stretch, meeting the defending champs' challenge to start off a difficult postseason-opening matchup for two powerful teams.
NBA DAILY FOR SUNDAY, APRIL 19
Recaps of NBA games played Saturday
Pierce leads Wizards past Raptors in OT in Game 1
The AP reports: TORONTO -- Paul Pierce beat the Raptors with a veteran mix of brains and baskets.
Pierce scored five of his 20 points in overtime, Nene had 12 points and 13 rebounds, and the Washington Wizards beat Toronto 93-86 on Saturday in Game 1 of their first-round playoff series... Bradley Beal scored 16, while John Wall and Kevin Seraphin each had 10 for the Wizards.
Amir Johnson scored 18 points and DeMar DeRozan had 15 points and 11 rebounds for the Raptors, who have yet to win the opening game of a first-round series in seven postseason appearances... DeRozan, Lowry and Terrence Ross shot a combined 11 for 41, including a 0-for-11 performance from 3-point range.
Curry scores 34, Warriors beat Pelicans 106-99 in Game 1
The AP reports: OAKLAND, Calif. -- Stephen Curry carried the Golden State Warriors to a huge lead, waving his arms and flexing his muscles with one acrobatic shot after another.
Every time the New Orleans Pelicans pulled closer, Curry came back even better.
Curry scored 34 points with an MVP-worthy performance, and the Warriors went up big before holding off the Pelicans 106-99 in their playoff opener Saturday... Klay Thompson added 21 points, and Draymond Green and Andrew Bogut dominated down low as the Warriors looked every bit like the NBA's top seed - at least for three quarters. They smothered Anthony Davis and the Pelicans early on with the league's best defense, thrilling a gold shirt-wearing sellout crowd of 19,596 that rocked and roared most of the afternoon... Davis did his best to bring the Pelicans back, shooting 13 of 23 from the floor and grabbing seven rebounds in his playoff debut. Quincy Pondexter scored 20 points and Eric Gordon added 16 for the Pelicans, who shot 42.2 percent and looked overwhelmed by the moment until the final quarter.
Rose scores 23, Bulls beat Bucks 103-91
The AP reports: CHICAGO -- Through three long years of knee surgeries and recoveries, the Chicago Bulls waited for this. And when the moment arrived, here is what Derrick Rose did.
He attacked. He played like an MVP, and if he keeps it up, the Bulls will be a tough team to knock out.
Rose had 23 points and seven assists in his first postseason game in three years, Jimmy Butler scored 25 points, and Chicago opened the playoffs with a 103-91 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday night.
Rose was at his fearless best, driving hard to the rim early and mixing in three 3-pointers in the second half. He shot 9 of 16 and got serenaded with "MVP! MVP!" chants... Khris Middleton scored 18 points and Zaza Pachulia had 15. Michael Carter-Williams finished with nine on 4-of-13 shooting, and the sixth-seeded Bucks came up short after jumping from 15 wins to 41 this season.
Harden has 24 points, Rockets beat Mavs 118-108 in Game 1
The AP reports: HOUSTON -- James Harden had 24 points and Corey Brewer scored 13 of his 15 points in the fourth quarter to lead the Houston Rockets to a 118-108 victory over the Dallas Mavericks on Saturday night in Game 1 of their Western Conference series.
Brewer made three 3-pointers in about 3 minutes in the fourth to keep the Mavericks at bay. He added another three points when he made a layup and a free throw to give Houston a 109-95 lead with 3 minutes left.
Houston won the opener in the best-of-seven series after losing both home games last season in a first-round loss to Portland. Game 2 is Tuesday night in Houston... Dirk Nowitzki had 24 points for the Mavericks. They are in the playoffs for the 14th time in the last 15 seasons.
Houston outlasted Dallas with a balanced scoring effort that featured seven players in double figures. Dwight Howard had 11 points, five rebounds and five blocks.