Day 1 of the NBA Playoffs proved a disaster for favourite backers and not much better for SBM members. Three of the four favourites were beaten and displayed the fine line between these teams this year-apart from one in the West.
The Warriors were stunning in their defeat of the Clippers (104-121) in a fiery contest which promised to erupt on more than one accession.
Again, the Warriors covered the spread and gave their home court followers plenty to cheer about.
In the first match Joel Embiid played after being listed Doubtful but his presence was not enough to get the Sixers home against the Nets (111-102).
With the Sixers poor road record and their struggles against the Nets they are now staring down the barrel of an early exit from the play-offs.
Game 2 saw the Magic grind out a last gasp win over the Raptors in Toronto (104-101) with the home side choking in the play-off opener at home again. Kyle Lowry put up 15 shots and did not score, including two from the stripe-need I say anymore.
The final game and the guile of Coach Gregg Popovich and the experience of the Spurs was enough for them to lead all the night and beat the Nuggets in Denver (101-96).
The common factor has been the teams that have been playing tough basketball to qualify for the play-offs and not resting players and tanking were too battle hardened for their more fancied rivals.
For the past fortnight the Warriors have been playing almost all their stars and still winning games against lesser teams.
Coach Steve Kerr has been down this road too many times and timed their preparation perfectly.
The Nets and Magic have been rolling and were too on their game for their more highly fancies rivals, with the play-off experience of the Spurs and Popovich there to see.
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