Nets 123, Celtics 109
Suns 115, Lakers 85
Nuggets 147, Trail Blazers 140
What went down
Dame Time is fun no matter when it happens, but Playoff Dame Time is truly marvelous. In any other game against any other opponent, the Denver Nuggets’ four-point lead with less than a minute to go would have been enough to comfortably seal Game 5.
But this is Damian Lillard, the 100 emoji come to life who doesn't care about the odds.
The Portland Trail Blazers have long ridden on Lillard's back to some incredible playoff moments. Game 5 might have been his masterpiece. Later on, Lillard would drill another triple to send the game to a second overtime, proving that Dame Time cares not for our scheduled lunches or meetings. We have no choice but to watch.
🚨 DAME DOES IT AGAIN!! ARE YOU KIDDING!!??— NBA (@NBA) June 2, 2021
LILLARD BURIES IT TO GET TO 50 POINTS AND FORCE DOUBLE OT ON NBA TV! 🚨 pic.twitter.com/z4fnJXSRGE
The most incredible fact from this is how the Nuggets still won. Lillard dropped 55 points and a playoff record 12 3s. Denver grabbed Game 5 and drew closer to the Western Conference semifinals. Damian Lillard will rightly draw all the headlines and appreciation tweets, although Denver deserves the same appreciation just for surviving it.
Amidst all the playoff hype from their New York neighbors, the Brooklyn Nets low-key dominated their series against the Boston Celtics. In the series-clinching Game 5, it was James Harden's turn to slightly outshine his two fellow superstars, dropping a 34-10-10 triple-double.
The Nets move on to face the Milwaukee Bucks in the second round. Given how their trio almost nonchalantly cruised past the Celtics, the Nets should have the upper hand against Giannis and the Bucks.
What he said
The defending champs are on the ropes. Without Anthony Davis, the Los Angeles Lakers suffered a 30-point romping against the Phoenix Suns. The game was never close. LeBron James, no stranger to being down 2-3 in the playoffs, is keeping a calm façade while everything seems to be burning around him.
LeBron James: "We got our ass kicked ... it's that simple.”— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) June 2, 2021
Expanded on tonight’s game: "They’re kicking our ass, but at the end of the day it’s 1 game … they held serve at home, we go home with the opportunity to (return serve)."
Did you see that?
There’s a good chance that you, the reader of an article from NBA dot com, has never had to guard anyone like Damian Lillard.
This reaction from Austin Rivers is as close as we can get to understanding the feeling. When your closeout isn't working, it's probably time to open your heart to the Lord.