“I just wanted to get up the floor as quick as possible and find a shot.”
–Kevin Durant

A couple of things I’m here for in this series: game-winning shots, comeback runs, and Kendrick Perkins and Zach Randolph going at it. KD’s Sunday game-winner with 11 seconds left only adds to the resume he’s building as one of the best around, and his ability to step up with the loss of Russell Westbrook and take over when the Thunder needed him most is why he’s considered the second most valuable player in the league. He can’t score all the points these series, though. Serge Ibaka, Perkins, and Thabo Sefolosha have to pull their weight as well if the Thunder plan on escaping with another win. Sidenote: This is yet another year where Derek Fisher can laugh at the Lakers sitting at home. Shout out to him.

“I’ll take that vote.”
– Carmelo Anthony

I read a crazy stat floating around Twitter that Carmelo Anthony missed more shots in Game 1 on Sunday (22) than LeBron James has missed the entire playoffs so far (18). LBJ is the most obvious choice for MVP, and whether or not Dan LeBatard has a vote, voted for Melo, or is possibly trolling us all, his performance this season is deserving of all of the accolades headed his way. Remember when everyone hated LeBron? Feels like another era. In any case, the return of Pacers vs. Knicks is always welcome in the Cox household, although lacking the heated rivalry of old. Sure, Reggie Miller footage is great but I missed Chris Childs’ scorpion tattoo. Also lacking, the Knicks ability as a team to make shots and Melo‘s presence on the court for parts of the second half due to foul trouble. The Pacers might not break too much of a sweat in this series, especially if they come up with another well-rounded effort.

“I’ll remember this for the rest of my life.”
–Joakim Noah

What is it about this Bulls team? Battered and bruised, they were able to come into Brooklyn and win Game 7 Saturday, 99-93 to advance to the second round, with what seems like the healthiest person on the squad wearing a suit (<cough> D. Rose <cough>). Noah played 41 minutes ailed by the same plantar fasciitis that has tried to hold him back, but no dice. The Bulls won with the likes of Jimmy Butler playing the entire game, and what has to be considered a phenomenal coaching job by Tom Thibodeau in keeping this team focused, prepared, and now through a very challenging first round. The bad news? They play the Miami Heat Monday night, in what will be the ultimate underdog story if they have any chance against a Heat team that has thoroughly dominated this season.