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"The Stack" 5-4-16

Draymond Green had a double-double and Klay Thompson added 27 as the Golden State Warriors overcame an eleven point 4th quarter deficit to beat the Portland Trailblazers 110-99 and take a 2-0 series lead. Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
Draymond Green had a double-double and Klay Thompson added 27 as the Golden State Warriors overcame an eleven point 4th quarter deficit to beat the Portland Trailblazers 110-99 and take a 2-0 series lead.
Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
There was plenty to celebrate for the St. Louis Blues and their fans Tuesday night as the Blues whooped the Dallas Stars 6-1 to take a 2-1 series lead.
Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

More playoff talk in “the stack” on this Wednesday.  Apparently it is Star Wars Day so May the Fourth be with you.  The Stack is here not to talk Star Wars, but NBA and Stanley Cup playoff talk so let’s get right to “the stack” for today, Wednesday, May 4th:

 

Warriors battle back, take down Blazers

 

Down 17 early, it seemed like this could be the game that the Warriors drop to the Portland Trailblazers which would then raise the topic of playing Steph Curry in game three even more.  Maybe if the Trailblazers had that 17 point lead in the fourth quarter they would have won.  Alas it was not meant to be.  The Trailblazers did have an eleven point lead in the fourth quarter and the Warriors did not have their first lead of the game until past the halfway point in the fourth quarter when Klay Thompson hit a three.  The Warriors would not look back and Golden State wound up winning 110-99.  Make no mistake about it this was a difficult game for the Warriors.  Portland was ready and they played well, but this game showed that the Warriors are a difficult team to beat with or without Curry.  I feel like we knew that already, but this game proved it.  The Warriors have a 2-0 series lead now and we won’t see them play again until Saturday.  Let the “will/should Steph Curry play?” questions begin.

 

Heat take game one in Toronto

 

Despite a half court prayer that forced overtime by Kyle Lowry, the Toronto Raptors failed to capitalize on it.  The Miami Heat scored the first eight points of overtime and held off the Raptors for a 102-96 win.  The Raptors have lost homecourt advantage.  Not saying that they can’t go down to Miami and win a game, but if Chris Bosh does come back (and the NBPA is meeting with the Heat to see what the deal is), I don’t think Toronto stands a chance.  They have to hold serve at home and they did not.  Goran Dragic and Dwyane Wade scored 26 and 24 points respectfully.  Not a good way to carry the momentum from that game seven home win against Indiana and the first playoff series won since 2001 if you’re Toronto.  Wednesday’s NBA Playoff Schedule is as follows:

 

Atlanta Hawks @ Cleveland Cavaliers 8 PM ET TNT (Cavaliers lead series 1-0)

 

Lightning score late, early in OT, take game 3 from Islanders

 

Game one the New York Islanders dominated.  Game two the Tampa Bay Lightning dominated.  Game three of course then would go back and forth.  Whenever one team would score, the other team would respond.  The Islanders scored on a power play early in the third period only to see the Lightning score less than a minute later.  It certainly looked like the Islanders were going to win the game 4-3 when the Lightning pulled goalie Ben Bishop, but the Lightning turned on the attack and scored with 38 seconds left to force overtime.  Nikita Kucherov, who scored the goal, now leads all players with seven goals in the playoffs this year.  The momentum for the Lightning carried over to overtime where Brian Boyle scored just under three minutes into the extra period to net the Lightning a 5-4 victory and a 2-1 series lead.  This series just feels like it is going to go seven games.  Hope game four on Friday is just as entertaining and hopefully the Islanders can even the series up.

 

Western Conference blowout games

 

While the Lightning-Islanders game was close the entire way, both western conference series’ games were not.  The San Jose Sharks scored the first goal against Nashville and the Predators responded with the final four goals of the game to win 4-1 and get right back in this series.  They now trail 2-1.  Predators goalie Pekka Rinne struggled in San Jose, but he was on his game back home Tuesday night stopping 26 of 27 shots faced.  If he can do that the rest of the series, the Predators will win.

 

Meanwhile in St. Louis, the Dallas Stars were the ones singing the Blues as the Blues laid a beatdown on the Stars 6-1.  Like the Predators, the Blues gave up the first goal of the game and scored all of the remaining goals in the game.  Colton Sceviour scored for the Stars to put them up 1-0 and after that it was all Blues.  They would their third goal early in the second period forcing Stars head coach Lindy Ruff to make a change in net, taking out Anti Niemi and putting in Kari Lehtonen.  It didn’t matter.  The Blues kept pouring it on after that.  They now have a 2-1 series lead.  Have to hope that the Stars show up for game four or the Blues will make quick work of them in this series.  Wednesday’s Stanley Cup Playoffs schedule is as follows:

 

Washington Capitals @ Pittsburgh Penguins 8 PM ET NBCSN (Penguins lead series 2-1)

 

Coming up Thursday: NBA & NHL Playoff reaction plus other top stories in sports

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