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NBA Playoffs Day Five: Hornets at Heat, Pistons at Cavs, Blazers at Clippers

Three games on tonight's slate. After tonight, all series will be through two games.

Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

Hey! There's actual basketball happening!  I almost forgot in the wake of the Wolves news today, but we do have actual games we can watch while we think about Thibs pacing the sidelines at Target Center next season.

Hornets at Heat (Heat up 1-0)
6 pm CDT

The Heat dominated the first game of this series behind a huge game from Luol Deng, fantastic shooting, and defense that took away just about everything from Charlotte except Nicolas Batum. The Heat were best in nearly every category, and the Hornets looked strangely unready to play. Hopefully that changes tonight, because this is an evenly matched series that could be the best first round match up if both teams are playing their best ball.

Pistons at Cavs
7:00 pm CDT

The Pistons shot it great in game one and managed to keep it close, but two late threes by Kevin Love, and big plays by Kyrie Irving and LeBron James were too much as the Cavs' talent won out in the end. Love was fantastic, which was great to see, and Irving had a tremendous third quarter to overcome 15-29 shooting from three for the Pistons.

Detroit is unlikely to shoot that well again, and game one might have been their best chance to steal on this series, but in any event they cannot continue to lose both the rebounding and turnover battles to the Cavs. That's a recipe for a sweep.

Blazers at Clippers
9:30 pm CDT

The Blazers were a bit of a trendy upset pick before the playoffs started, but the Clippers took care of game one handily, with Chris Paul dominating to the tune of 28 and 11 assists while Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan took turns dunking all over the Blazers.  The Clips shot nearly 54% from the field in game one, which the Blazers have no chance to overcome.

The problem is it's not clear the Blazers have the size or defensive chops to do much about it. The Blazers will probably have better shooting nights in this series than they did in game one, but if they can't slow down the Clippers it may not matter.

Enjoy the games chat here.