Kobe Bryant scored 31 points, Andrew Bynum posted the Lakers' first playoff triple-double in 21 years with an NBA postseason record-tying 10 blocked shots, and Los Angeles controlled the tempo in a playoff-opening 103-88 victory over the visiting Denver Nuggets on Sunday.
Bynum, the Lakers' all-star center coming off his best regular season, also had 10 points and 13 rebounds while blocking 11 percent of the Nuggets' 90 shots.
While Bynum had the Lakers' first playoff triple-double since Magic Johnson in the 1991 NBA Finals, fellow 7-footer Pau Gasol added 13 points, eight rebounds, and eight assists for the playoff-tested Lakers, who never trailed while forcing the NBA's highest-scoring team to play Los Angeles' preferred half-court style.
Hot Spurs blast Jazz
Tony Parker scored 28 points and the Spurs won their first playoff opener in four years, beating the Utah Jazz, 106-91, in Game 1 of their first-round series in San Antonio, Texas.
Tim Duncan added 17 points and 11 rebounds, helping the Spurs dodge another early playoff letdown. Despite holding the No. 1 seed again, San Antonio hadn't won a Game 1 in its last six postseason series - including the one that began a shocking first-round ouster last year.
Paul Millsap led Utah with 20 points. The Jazz hung close until the third, when the NBA's top three-point-shooting team began burying Utah with three in a two-minute burst to finish the quarter.
The Spurs have won 11 in a row.
Hawks soar, Celts crash
In Atlanta, Josh Smith scored 22 points and grabbed 18 rebounds, leading the Hawks to an 83-74 victory over Boston in the teams' playoff opener. The final minute turned ugly when Celtics star Rajon Rondo was ejected for bumping a referee.
The Hawks, who led by as many as 19 in the first half, were clinging to a four-point lead when Rondo lost his cool with 41 seconds remaining.
Brandon Bass was called for a foul against Smith while tussling for a loose ball. Rondo screamed at official Marc Davis, who quickly called a technical. Rondo then bumped Davis with his chest and was tossed out. A suspension also could be coming for the Celtics' floor leader.
Rondo finished with 20 points and dished out 11 assists.
Thunder steal opener
Kevin Durant was determined to not let the Oklahoma City Thunder lose another playoff game at home to Dallas.
He scored 25 points and hit the winning jumper from the foul line with 1.5 seconds remaining to give the Thunder a 99-98 victory over the Mavericks on Saturday night in Game 1 of their first-round playoff series - a rematch of last year's Western Conference finals.
The Thunder trailed by seven with 21/2 minutes left before rallying to take the first step toward avenging a four-games-to-one series loss a year ago.
Dallas' Dirk Nowitzki scored 11 of his 25 points in the final five minutes, going on a personal 7-1 run that made it 92-85 with 3 minutes, 23 seconds to go, but it wasn't enough.
- Associated Press