Sunday's NBA Playoff Capsules
Monday, April 25, 2011
NEW YORK (AP) — Kevin Garnett had 26 points and 10 rebounds, Rajon Rondo added 21 points and 12 assists, and the Boston Celtics swept their way into the Eastern Conference semifinals, holding on for a 101-89 victory over the New York Knicks on Sunday.
Ray Allen and reserve Glen Davis each added 14 points for the Celtics, the first team into the second round after sweeping a series for the first time since a 3-0 victory over Indiana in 1992, the last series victory for their old Big Three before Larry Bird retired.
They had a 23-point lead cut to four in the fourth quarter, but pulled away again behind Garnett, who scored 20 after halftime.
The current Big Three of Garnett, Allen and Paul Pierce twice was extended to seven games in the first round, but this one was far easier than expected against the injury-weakened Knicks. The Celtics could now have a week off while they wait for likely second-round opponent Miami, which was forced to a fifth game earlier Sunday after a late rally by Philadelphia.
The Celtics almost faced the same scenario, but a Knicks comeback attempt stalled in the final minutes.
Carmelo Anthony had 32 points and nine rebounds, and Amare Stoudemire, who decided to play after his back felt better, finished with 19 points and 12 boards but shot only 5 of 20 from the field.
The Knicks shot 34 percent and were quickly dispatched in their first playoff appearance since 2004, when they were also swept in the first round. They haven’t won a playoff game in 10 years.
76ers 86, Heat 82
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Lou Williams hit a 3-pointer with 8.1 seconds left to lead Philadelphia over Miami and avoid a sweep.
Miami was 95 seconds away from winning Game 4, holding an 82-76 lead.
LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and the rest of the Heat didn’t score again.
Jrue Holiday made a 3 with 46.6 seconds left that sliced the deficit to one. Williams followed with a 3 from the top of the arc for an 84-82 lead that sent the nearly 20,000 fans into a frenzy.
Game 5 is Wednesday in Miami.
Williams and Evan Turner led the Sixers with 17 points each. Andre Iguodala added 16 points and Elton Brand had 15 points and 11 rebounds.
James scored 31 points for the Heat and Wade 22. Bosh scored 12 points and had two blocks late in the game that seemed to seal the win for the Heat.
Hawks 88, Magic 85
ATLANTA (AP) — Jamal Crawford scored 25 points and Joe Johnson hit four big free throws in the final 20 seconds after Atlanta struggled most of the night at the line, leading the Hawks to a victory over the Magic and a 3-1 lead in their Eastern Conference playoff series.
The Hawks will try to wrap up the best-of-seven series Tuesday night in Orlando.
Atlanta made only 12 of 20 free throws, but Johnson came through when the Magic were forced to foul. Orlando had a last chance to tie it up, but Al Horford knocked the ball away from Hedo Turkoglu as he tried to get loose for a 3-pointer.
Turkoglu got the ball back with only enough time to force one up. It missed badly, and the Hawks celebrated a commanding lead in the series.
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