PHOENIX (AP) — Deandre Ayton scored 25 points, Devin Booker added 23 and the top-seeded Phoenix Suns rolled to a 121-114 win over the Dallas Mavericks on Monday night in Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinals.
The Suns never trailed, jumping to a 9-0 lead in the opening minutes and rarely let off the gas. They shot 50.5% from the field, won the rebounding edge 51-36 and beat the Mavericks for the 10th straight time, counting regular season games.
Luka Doncic led the Mavericks with 45 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists. It’s the first time Dallas has advanced to the postseason’s second round in Doncic’s four-year NBA career.
Doncic and Maxi Kleber looked ready for the challenge but the rest of the Mavs didn’t do much until it was too late. Kleber finished with 19 points.
Game 2 is on Wednesday in Phoenix.
HEAT 106, 76ERS 92
MIAMI (AP) — Tyler Herro scored 25 points, Bam Adebayo finished with 24 points and 12 rebounds, and the Heat topped the shorthanded 76ers in the opener of their Eastern Conference semifinal series.
Jimmy Butler added 15 points for the top-seeded Heat, who got 10 from Gabe Vincent and P.J. Tucker.
The 76ers were without Joel Embiid, the MVP finalist who isn’t even in Miami while recovering from an orbital fracture and concussion — injuries suffered in Philadelphia’s first-round-clinching win at Toronto. He’s not expected to play in Game 2.
And as would be expected, he was missed. Tobias Harris scored 27 points for Philadelphia, which got 19 from Tyrese Maxey and 16 points, nine rebounds and five assists from James Harden.
Game 2 is Wednesday in Miami.