While the top seeds in the East and West will be in action Wednesday night, it's the 4-5 matchup that holds the most intrigue. Charlotte will have to battle to keep afloat against Miami, and San Antonio is in control of Dallas. There could be pandemonium in Houston.
Charlotte Bobcats vs. Miami Heat, Game 2
7 p.m. ET (TNT)
Charlotte battled the reigning two-time champs fiercely Sunday for three quarters. Kemba Walker showed he was ready for the playoff spotlight, amassing 20 points, six assists and five rebounds. Charlotte used its three-point attack to stay in the game, knocking down eight treys to stick tight to the Heat. Then LeBron James hit a three-pointer to end the third quarter, and things fell apart.
The Heat shut down the Bobcats, dominating them on the defensive end of the floor. Then they went berserk from beyond the arc, going 4-of-5 on three-pointers to take charge of the fourth quarter. Charlotte will have trouble with Miami all series while Al Jefferson deals with aggravated plantar fasciitis, which is severely limiting his mobility. The Heat have a chance to grab a 2-0 lead Wednesday night. The Bobcats will need everything they have to tie the series.
Dallas Mavericks vs. San Antonio Spurs, Game 2
8 p.m. ET (NBATV)
Dallas didn't look like it belonged on the same court as San Antonio in Game 1. The Mavericks were inefficient shooting the ball, with both Dirk Nowitzki and Monta Ellis going just 4-of-14 from the field. Dallas succeeded in stopping San Antonio from the three-point line, but failed just about everywhere else. San Antonio dominated on the glass and shot nine more free throws to grab a 90-85 win.
Although the Mavericks challenged from the beginning, there was never a sense that the Spurs weren't in control. Though Dallas shut down San Antonio from the three-point line, they gave up the lane to Tony Parker and couldn't muster a counter. If there's any team that's been cruising through the regular season, waiting for the playoffs to start, it's the Spurs. They just happened to finish with the best record in the NBA. They currently have Dallas on the ropes early with a 1-0 lead going into Wednesday.
Portland Trail Blazers vs. Houston Rockets, Game 2
9:30 p.m. ET (TNT)
All Portland had to do to beat Houston on Sunday was match a feat that hadn't been done in more than two decades. The Blazers' LaMarcus Aldridge scored 46 points, and guard Damian Lillard scored 31, making them the first duo in the NBA playoffs to score at least 45 and 30 since Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen did it in 1992.
Houston played its game, but couldn't capitalize on its heavy offensive rebounding advantage enough to sustain a lead. Portland used Houston's own weapon against it, dominating on the fast break. Both teams battled through inconsistent officiating that gave Houston zero free throws in the first half but a whopping 40 in the second half and overtime. Questionable calls aside, both teams played out of their mind in one of the most exciting first games of the NBA playoffs. The Rockets have to stop the Trail Blazers' offense if they want to go back to Portland on Friday with the series tied, 1-1.