Day 1 of the 2014 NBA playoffs is in the books, and it's set the stage for 39 more nights of epic postseason action.
There were exciting, down-to-the-wire showdowns, blowouts that turned into barnburners and unexpected finishes across the board during the four-game Saturday slate.
It was a good day for road teams, as three of the four games ended with the visiting squads retaking home-court advantage. It took until after midnight Sunday morning for a home team to win when the Thunder outlasted the Grizzlies.
Will the road teams continue to have success in Day 2?
Let's break down all of the results from Saturday, and how to catch Sunday's games.
|Away Team||Home Team||Time (ET)||TV|
|Dallas Mavericks||San Antonio Spurs||1 p.m.||TNT|
|Charlotte Bobcats||Miami Heat||3:30 p.m.||ABC|
|Washington Wizards||Chicago Bulls||7 p.m.||TNT|
|Portland Trailblazers||Houston Rockets||9:30 p.m.||TNT|
|Team 1||Team 2|
|No. 1 Indiana Pacers: 0||No. 8 Atlanta Hawks: 1|
|No. 2 Miami Heat: 0||No. 7 Charlotte Bobcats: 0|
|No. 3 Toronto Raptors: 0||No. 6 Brooklyn Nets: 1|
|No. 4 Chicago Bulls: 0||No. 5 Washington Wizards: 0|
|No. 1 San Antonio Spurs: 0||No. 8 Dallas Mavericks: 0|
|No. 2 Oklahoma City Thunder: 1||No. 7 Memphis Grizzlies: 0|
|No. 3 Los Angeles Clippers: 0||No. 6 Golden State Warriors: 1|
|No. 4 Houston Rockets: 0||No. 5 Portland Trailblazers: 0|
Day 1 Results
Nets 94, Raptors 87: Brooklyn Takes 1-0 Lead
The talk leading up to Game 1 of the Raptors-Nets series was about Raptors vs. dinosaurs, but the elder Nets saw their experience shine through in the clutch moments of Game 1 and it led to a 94-87 Brooklyn victory.
Nets star Paul Pierce was quiet for much of Game 1 and had an off night shooting, but he turned it on in the fourth quarter.
He scored nine of his 15 points in the final frame, including a number of contested jumpers to put the win on ice.
VIDEO: Paul Pierce yells "that's why they got me here!" after clutch jumper vs. Raptors http://t.co/BzV0hucRas— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) April 20, 2014
Brooklyn point guard Deron Williams showed his worth as a star, scoring 24 points, and Joe Johnson added 24 more. That was enough to shake off an off night from long range, as the Nets went 4-of-24 from beyond the arc.
The Raptors were constantly in the game, fueled by their raucous crowd and energized by Kyle Lowry's leadership. He scored 22 points and Jonas Valanciunas was a force in the inside with 18 rebounds, but it wasn't enough.
Heading into Game 2, the Nets now have the advantage as they have gained home court. Picking up another win in Game 2 would allow Brooklyn to put a stranglehold on the series heading back home.
Warriors 109, Clippers 105: Golden State Takes 1-0 Lead
The Warriors-Clippers series has all the makings of a classic, and it lived up to the hype in Game 1 as Golden State gutted out a tight, 109-105 victory in Los Angeles.
It didn't look good for the road team early. The Clippers started out much hotter and Golden State struggled to find its footing in its 2014 playoff debut, but eventually things got tight down the stretch and it ended in a Warriors victory.
David Lee had his hands full in the frontcourt but still finished with a solid performance as he scored 20 points and grabbed 13 rebounds. Klay Thompson added 22 points, including 4-of-7 from long range.
The Warriors didn't get a huge performance from Stephen Curry, who only scored 14 and turned the ball over seven times. But they didn't need it with five players scoring in double figures.
Chris Paul scored 28 for the Clippers, but it wasn't enough for L.A. to defend its home court and now the Warriors take that crucial advantage.
Hawks 101, Pacers 93: Atlanta Takes 1-0 Lead
As the regular season concluded, no team was the subject of more negative talk than the Indiana Pacers. And, well, their postseason debut didn't do much to change that.
The Atlanta Hawks used a dominating second half to oust the hapless Pacers, 101-93, in Indiana and assumed home-court advantage for their series.
The two sides were tied at 50 apiece heading into the halftime break. Then, the Hawks jumped out to an 18-point lead in the third quarter, and the Pacers couldn't get it to within single digits until the game had been decided.
Paul George scored 24 points and Lance Stephenson added 19 for the East's top seed, but they still got run out of the gym by a 38-44 Hawks team that squeaked into the postseason.
George was quick to dismiss the notion that the Pacers were doomed, per the team's official Twitter:
Paul George: "It's frustrating but it's one game. It's a long series. Just need to better prepare for the next one."— Indiana Pacers (@Pacers) April 20, 2014
Indiana's young star has a point—you can't look too much into this one game. But the thing is, it's not just one game for the Pacers. They entered the playoffs playing poorly, and it hasn't changed now, which should be alarming for Indiana fans.
One game certainly doesn't win or lose a series, and neither will two. But if the Pacers don't pick themselves up and win convincingly in Game 2, it could be the beginning of the end of Indiana's season.
Thunder 100, Grizzlies 86: Oklahoma City Takes 1-0 Lead
It wasn't as easy as initially advertised, but the Thunder took a 1-0 series lead over the pesky Grizzlies with a 100-86 victory.
The playoff atmosphere in Oklahoma City was electric early on, and it fueled the Thunder to success early on. They led by 22 heading into the halftime break and were shutting down Memphis' offense at an impeccable pace.
The Grizzlies then bounced back and got right back in the thick of things, outscoring Oklahoma City 31-13 in a dominating third quarter. It was anyone's game heading into the fourth quarter, and that was when Kevin Durant and Co. put things on lockdown.
After Mike Miller hit a three to cut OKC's lead to two early in the fourth quarter, the Thunder went on a 13-1 run. When that was done, they were up more than a dozen with a few minutes left and only needing a few possessions to ice the game.
Durant had a big day as usual, finishing with 33 points, seven assists and eight rebounds to go with Russell Westbrook's 23 points. Not too many of those points came in the second half, but the cushion they built early on and a strong fourth quarter was enough to secure Game 1.
The Grizzlies will certainly be feeling confident heading into Game 2 after battling back into a game they had no business being in. But this win could do wonders for the mentality of Oklahoma City, a team that ground out a win over a team that has built its reputation on grinding.