There was a possibility that four teams would advance to the second round of the 2012 NBA Playoffs on Tuesday night, but that was apparently easier said than done. The Indiana Pacers were able to eliminate the Orlando Magic, but three other teams were able to force a Game 6 in their series.
The game between the Pacers and Orlando began the night's action in Indiana, as the Magic tried to force another game in the series. But without Dwight Howard, that was a rather tall task. Danny Granger and Darren Collison both stepped up big to eliminate the Magic on the way to a 105-87 final score as Jameer Nelson's 27 points in defeat just weren't enough to overcome the odds.
The Atlanta Hawks were more successful in their endeavor to stay alive, mostly due to the fact that their All-Star center returned to the starting lineup after a long injury layoff -- though they nearly blew it in the waning seconds. Al Horford scored 19 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, though, to keep the Hawks alive with an 87-86 victory. Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett scored 16 points apiece in the Boston Celtics' loss, but the offense sputtered too much at inopportune times for their contributions to make too much of a difference.
Chicago was the site of the night's worst game, aesthetically speaking, as the Chicago Bulls staved off elimination with a 77-69 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers. The Bulls played without Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah, but Luol Deng and Carlos Boozer combined for 38 points to force a sixth game in the seven-game series. Jrue Holiday scored 16 points to lead the Sixers in the loss.
Tuesday evening's nightcap gave the Los Angeles Lakers a chance to eliminate the Denver Nuggets, but JaVale McGee was just too much (no, I didn't think I'd ever type that sentence in a playoff recap either) as Denver forced a Game 6 after pulling out a 102-99 victory. McGee scored 21 points and grabbed 14 rebounds after beginning the game on the bench, fellow reserve Andre Miller scored a team-high 24 and Kobe Bryant's impressive 43 points were all for naught.
For more on Tuesday night's action, be sure to visit this StoryStream for all of the gifs, recaps and reaction from around the internet.