Ben Simmons ’ s 34.2 percentage free-throw shoot ( 25 for 73 ) in the playoffs was the second lowest in league history for players who attempted at least 50 complimentary throws. only Detroit ’ s Ben Wallace ( 18 for 66 in 2005-6 ) shoot bad ( 27.3 percentage ) .
The Houston Rockets had just a 52.1 percentage chance of landing a top-four pick in last workweek ’ s gulp lottery. The Rockets, to their great easing, wound up at No. 2 when they could have fallen all the way to No. 18 had they dropped out of the top four — courtesy of the pick-swap provisions of their 2019 trade with Oklahoma City to acquire Russell Westbrook for Chris Paul. Those provisions would have enabled the Thunder to stick Houston with Miami ’ s first-round clean, since they besides control the Heat ’ s No. 18 selection through a distinguish trade. Oklahoma City prioritized rest and injury recovery for its best players after a 20-27 start and finished the season on a 2-23 slide, then ended up slipping to No. 6 in a draft many scouts say features a clear-cut top four. Cleveland ( No. 3 ) and Toronto ( No. 4 ) jumped into the top four to knock the Thunder down .
Charlotte and New Orleans are the only two franchises left in the 30-team N.B.A. that have even to reach the league finals after the Los Angeles Clippers did thus this class in their 51st temper in Los Angeles, San Diego and Buffalo. The Atlanta Hawks, in the conference finals for merely the irregular time in the club ’ s Atlanta history, besides originated in Buffalo. The Hawks exhausted less than 40 days of their inaugural address season in what was known as the National Basketball League in 1946-47 as the Buffalo Bisons.
Paul George ’ s 41 points in Game 5 of the western Conference finals established a career playoff high. Yet in the Clippers ’ Game 4 home loss, George shot 0 for 6 from the floor in the fourth quarter on field-goal attempts that either could have tied the game or given his team the lead. Utah ’ s Donovan Mitchell, who endured a similar 0-for-6 finish in a 2019 playoff loss to Houston, is the alone other musician to do thus since the 1997 playoffs, according to Stathead. Digitized play-by-play data for all games in an N.B.A. season was introduced in 1996-97.
The Hawks lost home-court advantage in the Eastern Conference finals by dropping Game 3 at home plate to Milwaukee, but Coach Nate McMillan hush sports a 36-17 phonograph record ( playoffs included ) since replacing Lloyd Pierce on March 1. McMillan steered fifth-seeded Atlanta to upsets of the No. 4 Knicks and No. 1 Philadelphia in the foremost two rounds of the playoffs after failing to win a series in four consecutive trips to the playoffs with Indiana. Three of McMillan ’ s four Pacers teams got swept in Round 1. Hit me up anytime on Twitter ( @ TheSteinLine ) or Facebook ( @ MarcSteinNBA ) or Instagram ( @ thesteinline ) .
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