After few remaining games in the NBA, at last the official NBA Playoff Schedule has finally been determined together with the NBA Playoff bracket for NBA fans to know which teams would battle for the best of seven format as the 2011 NBA Playoffs kicks off on Saturday April 16, 2011.
The best of seven format in the NBA Playoffs will once again feature 8 basketball teams coming from each of the two conferences. Typically, the 3 NBA division winners are automatically qualified together with 5 other teams with the most victories from each of the two conferences. The seedings are based on each team’s record. However, a division winner is guaranteed to be ranked at least fourth, regardless of their record and their winnings.
For the Western Conference this 2011. San Antonio Spurs ranks number 1. They are followed by defending champion, Los Angeles, then Dallas and Oklahoma City. The bottom half is composed of Denver, Portland, New Orleans and Memphis.
For the Eastern Conference this 2011, Chicago is the top seed. Meanwhile, Boston, Miami and Orlando follows them respectively. The bottom half of the seed are Atlanta, New York, Philadelphia and Indiana.
As of now, the 2011 NBA Playoffs Schedule is not yet complete. The final schedule and official roster of the 2011 NBA Playoff will be announced on April 14, at 3:00 PM ET. Basketball fans can watch the 2011 NBA Playoffs live stream through the coverage broadcast of ESPN, ABC and TNT.
Stay tuned to us as we report the NBA Playoffs Schedule 2011 as well as the NBA Playoffs 2011 Bracket:
There are big expectations in New York this season for the Knicks, especially with the acquisition of Carmelo Anthony. But the Knicks are now 6-3 since picking up Anthony (and the injured Chauncey Billups) from Denver, and he showed why the Knicks are improving with a nail-biting win (on the NBA spread too) in Memphis on Wednesday.
Anthony scored a game-high 31 points, including the game-winner with 0.5 seconds remaining, in a 110-108 victory over the Grizzlies, and he added six assists, five boards and a couple of steals, which made up for six turnovers. Amare Stoudemire chipped in with 26 points for the Knicks, who shot 53.4% from the field and hit 12 of their 24 three-point attempts.
Anthony has settled into his role on the team very quickly, and last night proved that the Knicks are going to be a force to be reckoned with on the offensive end of the floor as they’ve now won three straight games.
But it wasn’t all good for the Knicks, who allowed the Grizzlies to shoot 53.7% from the floor, but that’s not really surprising because no one will ever mistake the Knicks for Boston when it comes to defense.
A bigger worry is that the Grizzlies outscored them 26-14 in the fourth quarter to make this game closer than it should have been, and the Knicks were also outscored 52-28 in the paint.
Stoudemire and Ronny Turiaf are the Knicks’ only legitimate big men, and Stoudemire isn’t known for being a defensive stopper.
That the Knicks had to name Jared Jeffries as their starting center for the rest of the season shows how badly New York needs a big man before they can become a legitimate title contender.
But with that being said, the Knicks have two weapons to make sure they’ll never out of a game.
Kevin Martin of the Houston Rockets has stepped it up further after losing former teammates Aaron Brooks and Shane Battier to player trades. On Sunday night, Martin came up with another good offensive game, scoring 33 points to help the Rockets overcome the New Orleans Hornets 91-89 despite trailing by 16 points in the second half.
Martin gave the Rockets a 90-87 lead when he sank two free throws with 18 seconds to play. The Hornets failed to tie the score when Willie Green missed on a three-point attempt. Courtney Lee grabbed the defensive rebound and was fouled with five ticks left, making one of two free throws for the final count.
The Hornets led 55-40 at halftime and even led by 16 at one point. They were held to 34 points in the second half against the Rockets’ 51 points.
The Rockets now have won four consecutive games.
Starting point guard Kyle Lowry finished the game with 18 points. Goran Dragic, who was acquired in a trade with the Phoenix Suns for Brooks, did not see action due to flu-like symptoms.
The Los Angeles Lakers moved further away from the Oklahoma City Thunder in the Western Conference standings by beating the Thunder 90-87 on Sunday. The Lakers’ starting big men finished with double-doubles to keep their firm hold of third spot and moving four and a half games ahead of Oklahoma City.
The Thunder had the chance to tie the game in the final seconds when Lamar Odom missed two free throws but Kevin Durant and James Harden missed their three-point attempts.
Pau Gasol had 18 points and 11 rebounds while Andrew Bynum finished with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Kobe Bryant finished with 17 points and seven assists for the Lakers.
New Thunder acquisition Kendrick Perkins form the Boston Celtics has not seen action due to a sprained knee but he could provide the interior muscle in the playoffs.
Russell Westbrook paced the Thunder with 22 points while Durant finished the game with 21 points. Thabo Sefolosha scored 10 points while Harden had 14 points off the bench.
Channing Frye nailed a long jumper at the buzzer, lifting the Phoenix Suns to a 110-108 overtime win against the Indiana Pacers on Sunday.
He made up for an earlier foul he committed on Josh McRoberts that resulted to a three-point play that allowed the Pacers to tie 108-108 in the final 24 seconds of overtime. Phoenix called timeout with 3.5 ticks to go in the game and found Frye open for the shot.
Frye had 14 points, making 5 of 11 shots from the field and 3 of 7 from three-point area. Grant Hill led all Phoenix scorers with 34 points, his season-high, along with 9 rebounds and 4 assists. Hill scored the Suns’ first seven points in overtime but the Pacers came back to tie the score in the dying seconds.
Steve Nash had 10 points and 13 assists for the Suns. Marcin Gortat had 17 points while Jared Dudley scored 15 points off the bench.
Danny Granger led the Pacers with 25 points. Brandon rush had 11 points and 8 rebounds.
The new-look Houston Rockets beat the New Jersey Nets and Deron Williams 123-108 on Saturday. Since losing Aaron Brooks and Shane Battier to trades, they won their first game behind big games from Kevin Martin, Chase Budinger and Luis Scola.
Martin had 30 points, six rebounds and four assists. Budinger, who took the starting spot from Battier who has been traded to the Memphis Grizzlies, scored 27 points by going 8-for-11 from the field and 3 out of 4 from the three-point area. Scola finished with 23 points and seven rebounds for the Rockets.
Williams paced the Nets with 15 points and a season-high 17 assists. Brook Lopez led the Nets in scoring with 21 points. Kris Humphries contributed 13 points and 11 rebounds for the Nets.
The Rockets acquired Goran Dragic from the Phoenix Suns for Brooks while Battier was shipped to Memphis for center Hasheem Thabeet. Dragic scored 6 points and issued an assist in his first game as a Rocket. Thabeet saw brief action but was hardly a factor. It may take some more time for Houston head coach Rick Adelman how Thabeet fits in the team.
The Atlanta Hawks made some moves before the trade deadline, sending veterans Mike Bibby, Maurice Evans, rookie Jordan Crawford and a first-round pick for Kirk Hinrich and Hilton Armstrong of the Washington Wizards.
The Hawks are currently at fifth-place in the Eastern Conference but the sixth-place New York Knicks are making a push after the All-Star break following the acquisition of Carmelo Anthony from the Denver Nuggets.
Bibby at age 32 has slowed down on the defensive end of the court and the Hawks may be better off with the entry of versatile guard Hinrich in their lineup. He can play both guard positions, play solid defense, pop from long-range and feed his teammates with timely assists.
The Hawks are giving up experienced players in Bibby and Evans but they are hoping that Hinrich would be an upgrade to the roster especially in the backcourt. The entry of Armstrong adds inside muscle to Atlanta given their size disadvantage when playing against bigger teams.
The Houston Rockets leaned on Patrick Patterson to pull off a 108-100 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Tuesday. The rookie forward scored 20 points with 11 of them coming in the fourth quarter to push the Rockets ahead for good after several lead exchanges.
Patterson scored seven straight points in a crucial stretch in the final quarter. His tip-in basket gave the Rockets a 95-94 lead. Patterson’s three-point play and two free throws gave Houston a six-point lead with less than three minutes to play.
Kevin Martin, the only starter to score more than ten points, scored 16 points. Luis Scola had 8 points and 9 rebounds while Chuck Hayes had 8 points and 8 rebounds. Chase Budinger scored 10 points off the bench.
Will Bynum came off the bench to score 21 points for Detroit. Starters Rodney Stuckey had 19 points, Greg Monroe finished with 12 while former Rocket Tracy McGrady had 10 points. Ben Gordon had 15 points off the bench.
The 2011 NBA All-Star Weekend culminates with the All-Star Game featuring the East and West teams on Sunday night at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. All-Star activities such as the Rookie Challenge, Skills Competition, Three-Point Shootout and Slam-Dunk Contest have provided great entertainment so far leading to the All-Star Game.
Former Kentucky teammates John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins teamed up as the Rookies beat the Sophomores for the second straight year, 148-140, in the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge. Wall had 22 assists to earn MVP honors while Cousins had 33 points and 14 rebounds.
In the Taco Bell Skills Challenge, Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors beat Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder in the finals to capture this year’s title. He overcame a strong field of highly skilled competitors such as Derrick Rose of Chicago, John Wall of Washington and Chris Paul of New Orleans.
James Jones of the Miami Heat won the Foot Locker Three-Point Shootout, beating out Paul Pierce and Ray Allen of the Boston Celtics. Jones scored 20 points, hitting all but one colored ball worth two points, in the final round against 18 by Pierce and 15 by Allen.
In the Sprite Slam-Dunk Competition, rookie sensation Blair Griffin made two-handed slam over a Kia Optima to win the contest against Javale McGee of the Washington Wizards. Early favorite DeMar DeRozan of the Toronto Raptors and Serge Ibaka did not make it past the elimination round.
The All-Star Game on Sunday is seen as Kobe Bryant’s stand against the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat. Four players from Boston and three from Miami, Eastern Conference rivals, will play together against Bryant who is playing his final All-Star Game at home.
The Boston Celtics leaned on Rajon Rondo to win 85-82 against Eastern Conference rival Miami Heat on Sunday. Rondo came up with a triple-double performance, finishing with 11 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists.
LeBron James missed a free throw in the final seconds that helped the Celtics escape with the victory. James had 22 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists for Miami. Chris Bosh had 24 points and 10 rebounds while Dwayne Wade had 16 points for the Heat. The Big Three of Miami scored all but 20 of the team’s total output.
The Celtics are now at the top spot of the East and have a 3-0 edge over the Heat this season. Miami has a chance to salvage a season sweep when they meet Boston again in April.
Kevin Garnett led the Celtics in scoring with 19 points. Paul Pierce managed to score just a single point on a bad shooting night but Kendrick Perkins made up with 15 points. Ray Allen finished with 13 points, Glen Davis had 16 and Von Wafer had 10 off the bench.