by Harry Porter | In my new column, I will be recapping the playoff action around the NBA to keep the Beehive State up to date on all of the games. Monday was exciting and filled with key turning points for each series. After losing the opening game of the playoffs, both the Bucks and Lakers have won three straight games to take commanding lead of their respective series. OKC evened out the series 2-2 against the Rockets and the Heat completed their sweep of the Pacers.
#1 Milwaukee Bucks vs. #8 Orlando Magic, Game 4: 121-106, MIL (MIL leads 3-1)
After a disappointing game 1 loss, the Bucks have answered early critics and bounced back with three straight wins. The Bucks took a 58-52 lead into halftime and never looked back. The Bucks forced 16 turnovers and shot 41.5% from three-point land. Giannis Antetokounpo(31p/15r/8a) and Nikola Vucevic (31p/11r/7a) tied for a game-high 31 points each. The Bucks will look to close out the series in game 5.
#4 Houston Rockets vs. #5 Oklahoma City Thunder, Game 4: 117-114 OKC (Series tied 2-2)
The Rockets continue to fight without Russell Westbrook who is nursing a quad injury. The Harden-led Rockets took a 93-92 lead into the fourth quarter and couldn’t hold on for the win. OKC fought to even the series out 2-2 behind strong performances from Dennis Schroder (30p/1r/3a), Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (18p/12r/6a) and Chris Paul (26p/6r/3a). James Harden (32p/8r/15a) will look to take the series lead in game 5 with a Rockets win.
#4 Indiana Pacers vs. #5 Miami Heat, Game 4: 99-87, MIA (MIA wins 4-0)
The Heat closed out the Indiana Pacers in game 4 behind a stifling defense effort led by Andre Iguodala’s 4 steals and 1 block. Indiana finished the 1st quarter with a one-point lead and would relinquish for the rest of the game by half time. The Heat were lead by Bam Adebayo (14p/19r/6a), Goran Dragic (23p/5r/3a) and Tyler Herro (16p/5r/4a). The Heat held the Pacers to under 42% shooting from the field and put the finishing touches on a dominating series. The Heat will face either the Bucks or the Magic in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.
#1 Los Angeles Lakers vs. #8 Portland Trailblazers, Game 4: 135-115 LAL (LAL leads 3-1)
The Lakers took a commanding 3-1 series lead in a 20-point victory over the Blazers in game 4. The emotional triumph on Kobe Day (8/24) was extremely meaningful for the Lakers to honor Kobe’s legacy. Lebron James (30p/6r/10a), Anthony Davis (18p/5r/5a/2b) and Kyle Kuzma (18p/2r/2a) carried the Lakers to a dominant performance from the opening tipoff. Weber State Alumn and Blazers’ star Damian Lillard (11p/1r/4a) played below his usual standards and the main reason can be attributed to his dislocated finger from game 3. The Blazers will need Dame Time performing at full health in game 5 to prevent the Lakers from winning the series with four consecutive wins.
Tomorrow’s slate of games features the Clippers squaring off against the Mavericks in a series tied 2-2, and our Jazz will be looking to close out the Nuggets with a 3-1 lead heading into game 5.
Featured image via Yahoo News.