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It’s time to recap the 2015 NBA Playoffs 2nd Round with the Rebounds & Blocks. Thanks to NBA.com & ESPN.com for help in this article:
- The Rockets come back from 3-1 down to beat the Clippers– The Houston Rockets are heading to the Western Conference finals for the first time in 18 years after overcoming a 3-1 series deficit to eliminate the Los Angeles Clippers.”It’s the ultimate confidence-booster,” James Harden said. “There’s only a handful of teams that’s done that. We fought back. We fought three really hard games and came away with it.”
Harden scored 31 points, Dwight Howard had 16 points and 15 rebounds and the Rockets never trailed in a 113-100 victory over the Clippers on Sunday, sending them to the conference finals for the first time since 1997.
It’s the ninth time in NBA history that a team has overcome a 3-1 series deficit to win a playoff series.
The Rockets overcame a 19-point third-quarter deficit in Game 6 on Thursday night to stay alive. No such heroics were needed Sunday when they were up by 17 after three and Howard opened the fourth quarter with a 3-point play to push it to 88-68.
“When you’re down 19 on the road, it’s easy to give in and just say, ‘Maybe next year,’ ” Harden said. “But I think the injuries throughout the entire year kind of made us fight through adversity no matter what. We always find a way to fight, and another case was being down 3-1.” Every fan in the arena was given a red shirt emblazoned with the words “Clutch City” in yellow letters, bringing back the moniker of the 1994 and ’95 teams that won back-to-back titles. These Rockets lived up to the nickname, winning their third straight game to become the first team to win a playoff series after trailing 3-1 since the Phoenix Suns did it in 2006 against the Lakers.
- The Warriors continue to roll, this time over the Grizzlies– Stephen Curry practices tough shots every day. The MVP came up with a third-quarter buzzer-beater his coach calls the play of the game.For Golden State, rank it among the Warriors’ best shots in decades, and it helped put them in their first Western Conference finals since 1976.
Curry scored 32 points with that 62-footer among eight 3-pointers, and the Warriors beat the Memphis Grizzlies a third straight game, 108-95, on Friday night.
“In a closeout game like that, that’s a big turning point and the moment’s magnified,” said Curry, the NBA’s MVP. “I made one in college like that. That’s the last I made anywhere past half court and same kind of shot: loose ball, grab it, throw it up and knock it down.”
First-year coach Steve Kerr called this a beautiful team win and a big moment for the Warriors. He said Curry was amazing, especially with that shot as the Grizzlies tried to make a run in the third quarter.
“It wasn’t quite a closeout shot, but it was the play of the game,” Kerr said.
The Warriors advanced with some of the best shooting in the NBA postseason since 1985, becoming the first team since that year to hit 14 or more 3s in three consecutive playoff games. Curry was 8-of-13 from beyond the arc as the Warriors knocked down their playoff-best 15 3-pointers.
Curry, who had 10 assists for his first double-double this postseason, hit the shot of the night after Andre Iguodala blocked Jeff Green’s shot near midcourt. Curry grabbed the loose ball and beat the buzzer from the Grizzlies’ 3-point line for a 76-68 lead.
Klay Thompson had 20 points for Golden State, and Draymond Green added 16,Harrison Barnes 13 and Shaun Livingston 10.
- The Cavs overcome the Bulls in 6– No dominant performance by LeBron James. Not much from Kyrie Irving, either.Somehow, the Cleveland Cavaliers still found a way to advance to the Eastern Conference finals.
James struggled to score 15 points, Irving limped off the court and the Cavaliers still beat the Chicago Bulls 94-73 on Thursday night to clinch their semifinal series in six games.
Matthew Dellavedova scored 19 points, and Tristan Thompson added 13 points and 17 rebounds to help the Cavaliers advance to the conference finals for the first time since 2009 even though their superstar played like a mere mortal and their All-Star point guard hobbled to the locker room in the first half.
Despite all that, Cleveland is right where it expected to be after James decided to come home from Miami and return to his first team. The Cavaliers didn’t expect to get there like this, though — with Kevin Love suffering a season-ending shoulder injury in the opening round and Irving trying to gut through problems with both legs.
According to ESPN Stats & Information, it was the Bulls’ worst-ever loss at home in an elimination game and second only to a 23-point loss on the road to the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1968 division semifinals.
Irving scored six points in 12 minutes before twisting his left knee when he came down on Thompson’s foot early in the second quarter. The score was 35-all, and he did not return.
James had 11 assists and nine rebounds but hardly looked like the superhuman who carried Cleveland in Game 5 with 38 points, 12 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 steals and 3 blocks. He shot 7-of-23 from the field and missed all four 3-point attempts in this game. But the Cavaliers had more than enough to get by, setting up a meeting with Atlanta.
- The Clippers Meltdown– The Clippers went into Game 5 of their Series vs. the Houston Rockets up 3-1 & looked unstoppable at times & in a series that every win was by over 12 points except Game 2, but Coach Kevin McHale had inserted Josh Smith in the Starting lineup & the Clippers couldn’t hit shot & players that had stepped up earlier in the playoffs got small including Jamal Crawford, Austin Rivers & JJ Reddick. From Game 5-7 FG% of Crawford(Game 5; Played 27 Mins & FG% was .200, Game 6; Played 24 Mins & FG% was .307, Game 7; Played 26 Mins & FG% was .333) Rivers(Game 5; Played 21 Mins & FG% was .272, Game 6; Played 14 Mins & FG% was .250, Game 7; Played 15 Mins & FG% was .250) & Reddick(Game 5; Played 37 Mins & FG% was .250, Game 6; Played 36 Mins & FG% was .307, Game 7; Played 41 Mins & FG% was .333). The Clippers 3 Point Pct went down also from Game 5-7, Game 5- 25.7%, Game 6- 23.3% & Game 7- 25.0%. I do believe these stats show a main part of the Clipper Meltdown.
- Where was NeNe??– NeNe in the 2015 NBA Playoffs for the Washington Wizards was missing at best, only Game 3 vs. the Hawks which NeNe had 17 points with no turnovers, but during this series vs. the Hawks NeNe had no points in Game 1, 2 points in Game 2, 12 points in Game 4, 9 Points in Game 5 & 5 Points in Game 6. NeNe during the playoffs for the Wizards Played in 10 Games, Averaged 25.7 Minutes, .447 FG%, .478 FT%, 7.9 Points, 6.6 Rebs, 1.5 Assists & 3.2 Fouls. Just below average number for a player getting $13 Million from the Wiz this season.
So to update each Series win in the 2nd Round
1 Atlanta Hawks(60-22) defeats 5 Washington Wizards(46-36) in 6 Games
2 Cleveland Cavaliers(53-29) defeats 3 Chicago Bulls(50-32) in 6 Games
1 Golden State Warriors(66-15) defeats 5 Memphis Grizzlies(55-27) in 6 Games
2 Houston Rockets(56-26) defeats 3 LA Clippers(56-26) in 7 Games
2015 Eastern Conference Finals
1 Atlanta Hawks(60-22) vs. 2 Cleveland Cavaliers(53-29)
2015 Western Conference Finals
1 Golden State Warriors(66-15) vs. 2 Houston Rockets(56-26)