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Sunday, 20 April 2008 22:56
NBA Headline News

 SCOREBOARD
Monday, April 21
Utah at Houston (9:30 p.m. EDT). The Jazz will attempt to win their third straight playoff game in Houston in Game 2 of their first-round series.

STARS
Sunday
-Pau Gasol, Lakers, scored 36 points with eight assists and 16 rebounds in a 128-114 win over the Denver Nuggets in Game 1 of their first-round series.
-Dwight Howard, Magic, had 25 points and 22 rebounds in a 114-100 win over the Toronto Raptors in Game 1 of their first-round series.

STUNNER
Andre Miller scored 20 points and Willie Green had a career playoff-high 17, helping the Philadelphia 76ers stun the Detroit Pistons 90-86 Sunday in Game 1 of the first-round series. The Eastern Conference's second-seeded team was expected to beat the seventh-seeded Sixers by double digits and did lead by 15 midway through the third quarter. Both teams will get two days off before Detroit hosts Game 2 on Wednesday night.

DOMINANCE
Pau Gasol established playoff highs with 36 points and eight assists and had 16 rebounds as well Sunday as the Los Angeles Lakers took command early in the third quarter and beat the Denver Nuggets 128-114. Gasol, a 27-year-old forward/center acquired from Memphis on Feb. 1 after spending 6 1/2 seasons with the Grizzlies, was 0-12 in three previous postseasons. Game 2 will be played Wednesday night at Staples Center before the best-of-seven series shifts to Denver for the third and fourth games.

OPENERS
Dwight Howard had 25 points and 22 rebounds, and Jameer Nelson scored 24 points, and the Orlando Magic defeated the Toronto Raptors 114-100 Sunday in the opener of their first-round series. ... Ray Allen scored 18 points and Kevin Garnett had 16 as the two newcomers who led the Boston Celtics to the NBA's best record also sparked them to a 104-81 win in their playoff opener against the Atlanta Hawks. The second game of the best-of-seven series will be in Boston on Wednesday night.

STRONG IN DEFEAT
Denver's Carmelo Anthony had 30 points and 12 rebounds in a 128-114 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 1 of their first-round series on Sunday.

SPEAKING
``I'm going to put this on me. There's no excuses. ... The last bunny, that was a bucket I should've made. I'm going to take this one on the chin.'' - Detroit's Rasheed Wallace, who missed a shot near the basket that would have tied the game late in the seventh-seeded Sixers' 90-86 win over the second-seeded Pistons on Sunday night in Game 1 of their first-round series.
 

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