words // Nick DePaula:
With two evenly matched opening games on deck last night as the 2nd Round of the NBA Playoffs gets rolling, we saw the shorthanded Cavaliers host the hungry Chicago Bulls out East, and the CP-less Clippers take on the Rockets in Houston without missing a beat.
The Bulls executed all game long and led from start to finish — the first time in LeBron James’ 85 home playoff games that his team never once held a lead. With an attacking DRose hitting in the lane and from the field, Pau Gasol helping to stretch the floor with his mid-range jumper, and Jimmy Butler and Joakim Noah making all of the hustle plays and key stops throughout the night, the Bulls took Game 1 on the road in convincing fashion.
In Houston, perhaps the Rockets underestimated the Clippers’ collective confidence without Chris Paul on the floor. They managed to turn the ball over a disastrous 23 times, and could never get James Harden or Josh Smith flowing on offense. Blake Griffin took on leadership, playmaking and scoring duties with ease, putting together a monster 26 point, 14 rebound and 13 assist triple double in 40 minutes. He did his damage all night in the new Jordan Super.Fly 3 PO, and it was perhaps the best playoff game of his young career.
Check out all of the key players in action from both games last night, and let us know your favorite Kicks On Court below in the comments section.
CAVS vs BULLS:
LeBron James — Nike LeBron 12 Elite
Derrick Rose — adidas DRose 5 Boost
Mike Dunleavy Jr. — Nike Kobe X Low iD
Jimmy Butler — Air Jordan XX9
Kirk Hinrich — adidas Crazy Light Boost 2014 Low
James Jones — Nike Hyperfuse 2013 “Finals”
Kyrie Irving — Nike Kyrie 1
Mike Miller — Nike LeBron Ambassador 7
Pau Gasol — Nike Hyperdunk 2014 PE
Joakim Noah — adidas DRose 5 Boost
Iman Shumpert — adidas Crazy Ghost 2
Tristan Thompson — Nike Zoom Soldier 8
Taj Gibson — adidas DRose 5 Boost
Aaron Brooks — Nike KD Trey5 II