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- NBA-Highlights of Saturday's NBA playoff games (Reuters) April 20, 2014(Adds late game) April 19 (The Sports Xchange) - Highlights of Saturday's National Basketball Association playoff games: - - - Warriors 109, Clippers 105 Guard Klay Thompson scored 22 points and forward David Lee added 20 points and 13 rebounds, and the Golden State Warriors surprised the Los Angeles Clippers in the opening round of the Western Conference quarter-finals. Guard Stephen Curry and forward Harrison Barnes had 14 apiece as the Warriors grabbed a 1-0 lead in the best-of-seven series. The Warriors prevailed despite blowing a double-digit lead in the fourth quarter. ...
- Hawks swoop for win over top-seeded pacers (AFP) April 20, 2014Toronto (Canada) (AFP) - The Atlanta Hawks surprised the top-seeded Indiana Pacers 101-93 in the opening game of their NBA Eastern Conference first-round playoff series. Atlanta's Jeff Teague, an Indianapolis native, scored 28 points and handed out five assists to lead the Hawks to a victory and a 1-0 lead in the best-of-seven series. The other Eastern Conference game on the opening day of the post-season also saw the visitors come out on top. Paul Pierce found his form in the final minutes, sparking the Brooklyn Nets to a 94-87 victory over the Raptors in Toronto.
- Raptors drop expletive and game to Nets in playoff opener (Reuters) April 19, 2014By Steve Keating TORONTO (Reuters) - Sparked by a stinging expletive the NBA playoffs got off to an explosive start as the Brooklyn Nets landed the first blow in a suddenly bitter Eastern Conference first round match-up with a 94-87 win over the Toronto Raptors on Saturday. Out of the playoffs since 2008, Toronto's return to the postseason was both eventful and controversial, upping the ante in the best-of-seven series. With A list celebrities, including rappers Drake, Jay-Z and Beyonce, occupying courtside seats, an embarrassing technical malfunction and a jaw-dropping expletive delivered by Raptors general manager Masai Ujiri to thousands of frenzied supporters at a pre-game pep rally, the first game of the NBA postseason offered a little bit over everything. A super-charged atmosphere greeted players and fans after allegations that the experienced Nets had tanked their final few regular season games to get a preferred match-up with the youthful Raptors rather than face the Chicago Bulls.
- Nets pull away from Raptors (The SportsXchange) April 19, 2014TORONTO -- Playoff experience is supposed to give the Brooklyn Nets an advantage over the Toronto Raptors. The Nets have it, the Raptors do not. Veteran forward Paul Pierce showed just what experience can mean on Saturday. He scored nine of his 15 points in the final three minutes of the game and the Nets took the opener of their playoff series with the Raptors 94-87.
- Raptors exec apologizes for crude dig at Nets (AFP) April 19, 2014Toronto (Canada) (AFP) - Toronto general manager Masai Ujiri apologized Saturday for a foul-mouthed, fan-baiting speech at a rally prior to the Raptors' NBA playoff opener against the Brooklyn Nets. Ujiri, a Nigerian who was the first African-born general manager in the NBA and earned GM of the Year honors while with Denver, said he was trying to whip up the crowd outside the Air Canada Centre prior to Saturday's Eastern Conference clash when he concluded his remarks by shouting "F--- Brooklyn!"
- Taunts Fly in Toronto, but Nets Get Last Word April 20, 2014The Toronto Raptors’ general manager, Masai Ujiri, directed an expletive toward the Nets before Game 1 began, but the Nets came away with the victory.
- Nets Enter Playoffs With Toughness Spawned by Last Year’s Exit April 19, 2014After an early exit from last year’s playoffs, the Nets retooled this season, bringing in players like Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce in hopes of making a title run.
- After Stellar Season, a Seasoned Foe Awaits April 19, 2014The Nets’ starters, who include Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett, have combined for 381 playoff starts; no starter on the third-seeded Raptors has even one.
- Nets Get 6th Seed and Will Face Raptors April 17, 2014The Nets lost to the Cavaliers, 114-85, allowing the Wizards to pass them for the Eastern Conference’s fifth seed. Washington will face the Bulls in the first round of the playoffs while the Nets will travel to Toronto.
- Woodson Is Looking to Next Season, but Others’ Eyes Are on Him April 17, 2014Before the Knicks’ season finale, a 95-92 win over Toronto, Coach Mike Woodson gave his players advice for the off-season, even though his future was uncertain.