The second weekend of the 2012 NBA Playoffs wraps up on Sunday with another full slate of four games, three of which can lead to crucial swings in their respective series. The Chicago Bulls and Philadelphia 76ers start the day at 1:00 p.m. ET at the Wells Fargo Center. The No. 8-seed Sixers have a shot to take a commanding 3-1 series lead against the No. 1 Bulls, who were already playing without Derrick Rose and will most likely be without Joakim Noah for the rest of the series. Noah badly rolled his ankle in Game 3 and, while X-rays on Noah's ankle were negative, head coach Tom Thibodeau said he's doubtful for the rest of the series. The Sixers will look to take advantage and push the Bulls to the brink on Sunday afternoon.
The second game of the day features a team already on the brink, the New York Knicks. The Miami Heat will try to finish off a first-round sweep at Madison Square Garden, with tip scheduled for 3:30 p.m. ET. The Knicks looked overmatched through the first three games, and things became even more difficult when Amare Stoudemire went off on a fire extinguisher. New York set a new NBA postseason record with their 13th straight postseason loss in Game 3 on Thursday. While the series is almost certainly out of reach, they'll try to stop that ugly streak on Sunday. Stoudemire, who went through a full practice on Saturday, is remarkably a game-time decision.
TNT will pick up the evening doubleheader, with the Celtics and Hawks leading it off at 7:00 p.m. ET. The Celtics are another team with a shot to take a 3-1 lead in a series that's been evenly matched throughout the first three games. Both Rajon Rondo and Ray Allen returned for Game 3 at TD Garden, and the Celtics eked out a six-point win in overtime.
The nightcap will feature Game 4 between the Nuggets and Lakers, with tip set for 9:30 p.m. ET at the Pepsi Center. Denver clawed back into the series on Friday night with a 15-point win over Los Angeles, but they'll need another huge game from their frontcourt combination of Javale McGee, Timofey Mozgov, and Kenneth Faried in Game 4 if they want to even it up at 2-2. Faried and McGee were incredibly productive on Friday, but the Lakers will certainly be determined to send things back to LA with a chance to close it out.
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