* Jimmy Butler scored 35 points for the Miami Heat, helping them beat top-seeded Milwaukee Bucks 130-117 on Sunday in an Eastern Conference playoff opener. The Bucks lost Giannis Antetokounmpo to a lower back bruise early in the second quarter, and Miami’s Tyler Herro broke his right hand later in the period.
* In the Western Conference playoffs, Rui Hachimura scored a playoff career-best 29 points, including 21 in the second half, and LeBron James added 21 points and 11 rebounds as the seventh-seeded LA Lakers beat the No 2 seed Memphis Grizzlies 128-112 on Sunday in the opening game of their series.
* The Los Angeles Clippers defeated the Phoenix Suns with a 115-110 win in their Western Conference playoff series opener on Sunday. Kawhi Leonard scored 38 points, including two late three-pointers, while Russell Westbrook shot just 3 of 19 from the field, but finished with nine points, 10 rebounds, eight assists, three blocks and two steals.
* Jamal Murray scored 24 points with eight assists to bring the top-seeded Denver Nuggets to victory against the Minnesota Timberwolves 109-80 Sunday night. Nikola Jokic added 13 points, 14 rebounds and a half dozen assists in 28 minutes and Michael Porter Jr scored 18 points. For Minnesota, Anthony Edwards led with 18 points, while Karl-Anthony Towns missed 10 of his first 12 shots, finishing with 11 points.
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