Pacers forward David West and Hawks center Pero Antic received double technical fouls following a nose-to-nose confrontation during the third quarter of Game 1.
Paul Pierce absolutely took over down the stretch for the Nets, scoring nine points over four consecutive possessions in the game’s final three minutes to help deliver a 94-87 road victory over the Raptors in Game 1 of a first-round playoff series.
After sinking the fourth shot, a mid-range jumper over Patrick Patterson that gave Brooklyn a nine-point lead with less than one minute to play, Pierce stared down the Air Canada Centre crowd and thumped his chest on the way to the huddle.
“That’s why they got me here,” a mic’d up Paul could be heard saying. “That’s why I’m in here. That’s what I do. Best in the business. That’s what I do.”
After fouling out of a 109-105 Game 1 to the Warriors, Clippers forward Blake Griffin spilled water on a Warriors fan seated courtside as he reacted to a JumboTron replay of his sixth foul.
With the 2014 NBA playoffs tipping off with a quadruple-header Saturday, The Point Forward is bringing you coverage of all four games: Nets-Raptors, Clippers-Warriors, Pacers-Hawks and Thunder-Grizzlies. Check back throughout the day for analysis, highlights and more.
Hawks 101, Pacers 93
By Matt Dollinger
• The Pacers’ free fall from bona fide contender to blue-and-gold dumpster fire has been more abrupt than a Gregg Popovich interview. Did Evan Turner and Andrew Bynum throw off the team’s peerless chemistry? Did the players’ newfound success get to their heads? Did a team reliant on teamwork become selfish to a fault? Yes, yes and yes. Indiana came unhinged with an 8-10 March, and the Pacers have yet to recover. We gave them the benefit of the doubt and assumed that the slumbering No. 1 seed would wake up come playoff time, but Saturday’s Game 1 loss to the Hawks proved that the team’s issues are alive and well — unlike its title hopes.
Rapper Drake couldn’t resist diving into the ongoing war of words that has unfolded between the Raptors and Nets.
Appointed “Global Ambassador” of the Raptors last fall, Drake joined the TSN broadcast of Game 1 on Saturday, firing off a one-liner in the direction of rapper Jay-Z, who used to be a minority owner of the Nets.
“Jay-Z is somewhere eating a fondue plate,” Drake said. “It’s our time. We’ve got to keep it competitive. This is an ironic match-up.”