Kings, Pistons, Heat win opening playoff games
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — After finishing the regular season with an ugly collapse, the Sacramento Kings looked awfully good in their playoff opener.
Peja Stojakovic scored 28 points and Chris Webber added 26 points and 12 rebounds, propelling the Kings to a 116-105 victory over the Dallas Mavericks in Game 1 of the best-of-7 playoff series Sunday.
The Kings made a franchise-record 11 of their 21 3-pointers, including five by Stojakovic to tie Sacramento’s individual playoff best.
Dirk Nowitzki had 32 points and 13 rebounds but battled foul trouble for the Mavericks, who have never won a playoff series opener on the road.
Game 2 is Tuesday night in Sacramento, with Game 3 on Saturday in Dallas.
Pistons 108, Bucks 82 — In Auburn Hills, Mich., Richard Hamilton scored 21 points and the Detroit Pistons set a team playoff record with 14 steals in Game 1 of their first-round series.
Detroit forced 24 turnovers and had eight blocks. The constant defensive pressure had the Bucks scrambling just to get their shots off.
Game 2 in the best-of-7 series is Wednesday in Detroit.
Desmond Mason led the Bucks with 16 points. Their leading scorer, Michael Redd, scored just 11 points — nearly 12 below his average — and went more than 18 minutes without scoring in the second and third quarters.
Rasheed Wallace had 17 points and 10 rebounds, Ben Wallace had 17 points, 14 rebounds and three blocks, and Tayshaun Prince added 14 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks.
Heat 81, Hornets 79 — In Miami, Dwyane Wade sank a 7-foot jumper with 1.3 seconds left, and the Heat stayed hot in Game 1.
The Heat earned their first playoff berth in three years with a 17-4 finish, and they finished strong against the Hornets despite some shaky moments in the fourth quarter.
New Orleans trailed 77-65 midway through the period, but rallied to tie the game on P.J. Brown’s jumper with 54 seconds left.
Miami’s third consecutive turnover gave the Hornets a chance to take the lead, but Lamar Odom stymied Baron Davis on a drive, leading to a shot clock violation with 11 seconds to go.
Following a timeout, Wade went to work from the point. He drove past Davis into the lane, then threw up a shot over 6-foot-11 Jamaal Magloire that put the Heat ahead.