Both the top-seeded Chicago Bulls and the second-seeded Miami Heat struggled to get going early on as they began the NBA postseason Saturday afternoon, but eventually each squad overcame their problems to post Game 1 victories.
View Current NBA Playoffs Odds
The NBA Playoffs began with the Chicago Bulls hosting the Indiana Pacers at the United Center with much of the money on the Bulls, who were an 11.5-point favorite according to online sports book Sportsbook.com. But after one half of play, Chicago trailed 55-51 and then fell behiind by eight points at the conclusion of the third quarter.
Most Valuable Player candidate Derrick Rose, who finished with 39 points as well as six assists and six rebounds, sprang to life in the fourth quarter to help Chicago outscore Indiana 33-20 over the last 12 minutes to post a 104-99 victory.
In the case of the Miami Heat, it was really only a lackluster first quarter that did them in. Miami looked none the part of the 10.5-point favorite it was over the Philadelphia 76ers as the visitors stormed out to a 31-19 lead after one quarter.
The Heat rebounded nicely, however, to outscore Philadelphia 35-18 in the second quarter and kept control of things thereafter. LeBron James completed the day with 21 points, 14 rebounds, and five assists to lead Miami to the victory.
Chicago hosts Indiana in Game 2 Tuesday night at 9:30PM EST on TNT, while the Heat are home again that same night as the first part of the doubleheader with a 7:00PM EST start against Philadelphia.