INDIANAPOLIS – Jeff Teague scored a playoff career-high 28 points and Paul Millsap added 25 as eighth-seeded Atlanta rolled past top-seeded Indiana 101-93 on Saturday, taking a 1-0 lead in the best-of-seven Eastern Conference first-round series.
The Hawks ended an eight-game road losing streak in the playoffs, which dated to May 2011. Game 2 is Tuesday in Indianapolis.
Indiana, which spent the regular season working to get home-court advantage in the playoffs, wasted no time in giving it right back with a dismal third quarter. Paul George finished with 24 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Pacers.
“It’s frustrating. It’s frustrating, but it’s a long series,” said George before explaining he believes the Pacers can regain the upper hand — if they figure out how to defend better. “It’s just one game and that’s the way we have to look at it.”
Atlanta opened the third quarter on an 8-0 run, snapping a 50-50 tie, then pulled away when Teague scored nine points in a 14-0 run that made it 74-58 with 4:08 left in the quarter.
Indiana couldn’t get closer than eight points the rest of the way.
It was a fitting twist to open the series.
Indiana looked fast and energetic in the first half, playing more like the team that was so good over the first half of the season. Then in the second half, the Pacers reverted to their recent script of being unable to make shots and get defensive stops when they needed them most.
The Pacers were 5 of 19 from the field in the third quarter and were 15 of 41 in the second half.
Warriors 109, at Clippers 105
Klay Thompson, a former Washington State standout, scored 22 points to help Golden State beat Los Angeles in the opener of their first-round Western Conference series.
David Lee had 20 points and 13 rebounds for the Warriors.
Chris Paul led the Clippers with 28 points, and J.J. Redick added 22 points in 30 minutes. Jamal Crawford, a graduate of Rainier Beach High School in Seattle, scored nine points on 2-for-11 shooting from the field; the Clippers were outscored by 15 points during the time Crawford was on the court.
Draymond Green made two free throws with 24 seconds left to give the Warriors a 107-105 lead.
Nets 94, at Raptors 87
Deron Williams and Joe Johnson each scored 24 points, Paul Pierce had nine of his 15 points in the final quarter and Brooklyn beat Toronto in Game 1 of their first-round East series.
Kyle Lowry scored 22 points and Jonas Valanciunas had 17 points and 18 rebounds for Toronto.
Raptors general manager Masai Ujiri let loose a profanity about Brooklyn during a pregame address meant to pump up a group of fans outside Air Canada Centre before the game. Ujiri, the league’s reigning executive of the year, apologized in a brief news conference at halftime, saying he made the “wrong choice of words” and was “just trying to get our fans going.”
Nets coach Jason Kidd claimed not to have heard about either the profane comment or Ujiri. “I don’t even know who the GM is,” Kidd said.
At Thunder 100, Grizzlies 86
Kevin Durant scored 13 of his 33 points in the fourth quarter to help Oklahoma City beat Memphis in Game 1 of their West first-round series.
Russell Westbrook added 23 points and 10 rebounds for the Thunder.
Zach Randolph led Memphis with 21 points and 11 rebounds, but he made a mere 7 of 21 shots and got into foul trouble in the second half.