The Portland Trail Blazers and Dallas Mavericks cap the first day of the 2011 NBA playoffs on Saturday as they hit the court at 6:30 p.m. for game one. With a late-surge, Portland secured the No. 6 seed in the Western Conference, avoiding the Los Angeles Lakers in the opening round. Instead, the Blazers drew the Dallas Mavericks, a team they split the season series with, dropping the first two games and winning the final two.
Schedule: The Blazers and Mavericks get started at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday. Game two is Tuesday at 6:30 p.m., game three is Thursday at 6:30 p.m. and game four is next Saturday at 2 p.m. The rest of the schedule can be found over at Blazers Edge.
Preview and breakdown: Blazers Edge also put together an extensive preview of the series, comparing team statistics to form an opinion of how the series may go. On the offensive end, the following quote stood out.
Dallas will have the advantage if the game is pretty and contact-free. Portland will have the advantage if it gets gritty and depends on brute force. The onus is on the Blazers to force the Mavericks out of their game because Portland won't come close to winning in a straight-up shooting contest
TV coverage: Game one will be shown on ESPN, live at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday. Games two, three and four will each be broadcast on TNT.
More information and coverage: For everything Blazers, head on over to SB Nation's Blazers Edge. For more on the Mavs, check out Mavs Moneyball. For live coverage throughout, visit SB Nation's NBA hub.
Check back with our NBA playoffs StoryStream for more on the games, including schedules for Saturday's matchup.
The NBA playoffs get underway on Saturday as eight teams take the court in first round matchups. From the stars of the Miami Heat to teams that may not belong, the NBA playoffs have a little bit of everything. On Saturday, the No. 1 overall seed, the Chicago Bulls, begin their run to the finals as they take-on the Indiana Pacers, a playoff team despite a record under-.500. It's wall-to-wall action, , beginning bright and early on Saturday morning.
Here's the relevant information for Saturday's games.
TV Coverage: ESPN and ABC have the combined coverage, with ABC picking up one game on the day -- the Miami Heat, of course. Here's a look at the schedule.
10:00 a.m.: Pacers vs. Bulls, ESPN 12:30 p.m.: Heat vs. 76ers, ABC 4:00 p.m.: Magic vs. Hawks, ESPN 6:30 p.m.: Mavericks vs. Blazers, ESPN
Bracket: If you thought the NCAA Tournament had the market on brackets cornered, think again. You can find your own NBA printable bracket at SB Nation. It will be updated throughout the playoffs, making it an easy reference for those following along at home.
For more on the playoffs, check back with this StoryStream or head over the SB Nation's NBA hub for live coverage of every game.