National team captain Dennis Schröder won the spectacular start of the playoff series against the Golden State Warriors with the Los Angeles Lakers.
In San Francisco, the NBA record champion scored 117:112 and benefited from a strong defensive performance by the 29-year-old from Braunschweig and 19 points from him. The dominating basketball player of the game was his teammate Anthony Davis with 30 points and 23 rebounds against the team around Steph Curry and Klay Thompson.
"No lead is safe against those who can overheat at any moment. It's a confidence boost for us, but we know what this team is capable of," Davis said of the defending champion. "We haven't done anything yet."
The Lakers initially pulled away in the third quarter and temporarily extended their lead to 14 points in the last quarter before the Warriors equalized with a 14-0 run to 112:112. In the last 98 seconds of the game, however, only the Lakers scored, two converted free throws by Schröder to 117:112 sealed the Lakers' important victory.
The Warriors are already under pressure before the second game in the best-of-seven series on Friday night. A team needs four wins to advance to the Western Conference Finals.
New York Knicks equalize against Miami Heat
Previously, the New York Knicks had leveled against the Miami Heat in their semifinals series in the Eastern Conference. After the loss at the start, the Knicks won 111:105. The German Isaiah Hartenstein contributed nine rebounds and three points to the important success before the two upcoming away games in Miami. The best pitcher of the game was Knicks pro Jalen Brunson with 30 points, teammate Julius Randle had 25 points. The Miami Heat were without Jimmy Butler, who was sidelined.