DALLAS – One game does not a series make.
But priorities must shift, game plans must be changed and certain things become reality. All that res the Lakers were planning on getting after they swept the Hornets is gone now that they’ve lost home court advantage.
Same goes for the Spurs, now that the Hang Time Grizzlies have exorcised the playoff demon that had dogged the franchise since its inception. (They snapped the longest losing streak in the history of the NBA playoffs at 12 games, by the way.)
The Celtics and Thunder survived Game 1 scares, each of them winning thrillers on their home floors against opponents that had every right to believe they would exit those respective buildings on top, based on how well they played into the final minute (and even seconds) of those games.
Sunday’s action looked much like what we saw Saturday, games that were much closer and much more competitive in most cases, than we could have imagined.
The playoff mantra for all involved should now be changed simply to survive and advance. The higher seeds can take nothing for granted since the lower seeds in every series seems unwilling to concede any ground.
Normally the 4-5 matchup provides the most intrigue, the obvious reason being the fact they’re the most closely linked teams based on regular season performance. But the top two teams in the mighty Western Conference getting popped in Games 1 just hours apart …
Just so we are clear about how crazy a weekend this was, the Thunder rallying from double-digit deficit made them the fifth team during the opening weekend to do so (joining the Bulls, Heat, Grizzlies and Celtics), per Elias Sports. In all of the 82 games played in last year’s playoffs there were only 11 games in which the winning team overcame a deficit of 10- or-more points.
Survive and advance, folks.
Survive and advance!