Apr 29, 2012; San Antonio, TX, USA; San Antonio Spurs guard Tony Parker (9) talks with head coach Gregg Popovich against the Utah Jazz during the first half of game one in the Western Conference quarterfinals of the 2012 NBA Playoffs at the AT

NBA Playoffs 2012: Spurs, Lakers cruise to Game 1 wins at home


Soobum Im-US PRESSWIRE

The San Antonio looked like the best team in the league today. And they might really be just that.

The Spurs won Game 1 at home against the Utah Jazz 106-91 Sunday.

Tony Parker led the Spurs with 28 points and eight assists and looked like the MVP-candidate he became this season.

The Spurs are just so fun to watch and play such perfect basketball. Now, they have a great offense this year and their matchup against Utah is a good one since Utah has the worst defense among playoff teams.

Every single player knows their exact role for the Spurs and today they all executed seemingly perfect.

Tim Duncan had a nice throwback game with 17 points, 11 rebounds and five assists.

Every possession has so much purpose for this team and unless Utah is going to play their very best basketball, the Spurs will win every game in this series.

They should be considered the favorite to win the NBA title right now. They won’t be though and that’s how they like it.

 

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-US PRESSWIRE

Andrew Bynum recorded a triple-double as the Los Angeles Lakers beat the Denver Nuggets 103-88.

Bynum scored 10 points to go with 13 rebounds and 10 blocks. The size of the Lakers’ bigs was just too much for the Nuggets to handle today.

Denver was fine beating their defenders off the dribble but with Bynum and Pau Gasol waiting for them they could not capitalize. The Lakers had 15 blocks as a team and held Denver to 35.6 percent field goal shooting.

If Denver is ever able to dictate the pace and tempo of a game against the Lakers they can win but the Lakers’ style is closer to what we always see in the playoffs so don’t expect that to happen enough for the Nuggets to have a real shot.

The Lakers know their identity and while the Nuggets do too to an extent, they don’t have the same kind of talent to execute their game plan well enough.

Kobe Bryant scored 31 points and Gasol had 13 points, eight assists and eight rebounds.

Denver is overmatched in this series and the Lakers should easily move on but they are known for being kind of “out of it” now and then so the series may still go six.

 

Richard Rowe-US PRESSWIRE

The Oklahoma City had the toughest time winning their first playoff game of the top three seeds in the West.

But the Thunder are matched up with the defending champion Dallas Mavericks who looked like just that last night.

Kevin Durant’s heroics have been the best part of the playoffs so far but hopefully for the Thunder, they will not need to rely on that to get by the Mavericks in this series.

Assuming Oklahoma City does advance, San Antonio still looks like by far their toughest potential matchup. The Spurs played great in the regular season against the Thunder and have been great overall of late and today.

The way that the Thunder turned up their defense in the fourth quarter tonight is a really good sign though. If Russell Westbrook can play the kind of defense he did last night on Jason Terry for the rest of the playoffs, then the Thunder are looking pretty good.

The Lakers’ weakness of giving up dribble penetration is not an issue against Denver but if they plan Oklahoma City in Round 2, the Thunder will be able to make Los Angeles pay.

The Thunder will play Game 2 at home against the Mavericks tomorrow night at 9:30 p.m. EST on TNT.

 

Head on over to Air Alamo and Lake Show Life for FanSided’s coverage on the Spurs and Lakers.

Tags: Andrew Bynum Denver Nuggets Game 1 Game Winner Kevin Durant Kobe Bryant Los Angeles Lakers MVP NBA Playoffs Pau Gasol San Antonio Spurs Tim Duncan Tony Parker Utah Jazz