The 2013 NBA Playoffs were filled with excitement, resulting in a championship for the Miami Heat.
The incredible passion that literally every player showed was hard to overlook. There were many games in which fans were panting hard, looking for their water or some oxygen, and there a lot of other games where you had to shake your head. For example, every single Laker game was like that. No offense to the Lakers, but they had a horrifying season, which was really summed up by the playoffs. It was suiting that Dwight Howard was ejected in Game 4, which wasn’t even close at the time.
With that being said, to take away distraction from the Lakers, here are the best games of the 2013 playoffs, in order.
1. NBA Finals: Heat vs Spurs, Game 6:
I’ve never seen such an exhilerating game in my life. The Heat were down by five points with 28.2 seconds left, and if you’re a Heat “fan,”your hope begins to fade.
LeBron James hits a three, okay, no big deal right?
Well as Kawhi Leonard found out, free throws are the game’s most important aspect. He split them, and it was only a three point game.
Ray Allen, on the other end, hit the most clutch shot of his career to tie the game, send it to overtime, and the Heat won 103-100 there. Earlier in the game, Allen had two 4-point plays that pulled the Heat within striking distance. He hit some big shots in overtime, and the Heat tied the series 3-3.
Game MVP: Ray Allen
2. Eastern Conference Quarterfinals: Bulls vs Nets, Game 4:
It would be insanity if a game that went to three overtime periods didn’t make it on this list. By far, this was one of the best games I’ve seen in a while, not just in the playoffs.
In the first overtime, Nate Robinson, who finished with 32 points, drilled a floater off glass to give the Bulls a two-point lead. On the other end, Mr. Clutch, Joe Johnson scored a floater to send the game to double-overtime.
After a few foulouts and clutch shots, the game was still tied after the second overtime period. Finally, the Bulls exploded in the third overtime to outscore the Nets 15-7, taking the Series lead at 3-1. They were able to win the series in seven games.
Game MVP: Nate Robinson
3. Western Conference Semifinals: Warriors vs Spurs, Game 1:
It would have been a heartbreaking loss for both teams. This game was absolute insane.
With four minutes left in the fourth quarter, the Warriors had a solid lead at 16 points. Then, the biggest whistle of the night came: the one that fouled Klay Thompson out. The Warriors were still feeling good about themselves, but the Spurs went on to a huge run, and were able to tie the game, sending it to overtime.
They had the momentum, but the Warriors kept battling, then found themselves in a stalemate in double overtime. Suddenly, Kent Bazemore (who?) got a breakaway layup to give the Warriors the lead with 3.9 seconds left.
Unfortunately for the Warriors, they were missing their best perimeter defender, and Manu Ginobli nailed a three, the eventual game-winner. Finally, everyone was able to take a breath.
Game MVP: Manu Ginobli
4. Eastern Conference Finals: Heat vs Pacers, Game 1:
LeBron James put daggers in everyone’s hearts in Pacer Nation.
It was a close game the whole time, but the Heat had a slight edge in the fourth quarter. Towards the end of the game, the Pacers had nothing going, but were down by three points. Suddenly, Paul George nailed a 30-foot shot, and the game was sent to overtime.
In overtime, however, the Heat came through. This time, the Pacers had the late lead, but couldn’t consolidate. Down by just one with under three seconds left, James caught the ball, drove to the basket, and finished with an even more wide-open layup than in shoot-around.
That happened because Roy Hibbert, the Pacers’ leading shot-blocker, was taken off the floor. Who knows why?
Game MVP: LeBron James
5. Western Conference Finals: Thunder vs Grizzlies, Game 1:
Unfortunately for the Thunder, they let the Grizzlies get the best of them in just five games, but were still able to provide us with some entertainment.
Without their superstar point guard, Russell Westbrook, they barely battled past the Grizzlies in Game 1. The reason that this game was on the list is because the brilliance of Kevin Durant, leading the Thunder to a win as they were able to score on the last possession, putting the Grizzlies away.
Game MVP: Kevin Durant