After defeating their higher-seeded opponents in Round 1 of the NBA Playoffs, the New York Knicks and the Miami Heat will be competing in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.
Here’s how the Knicks and the Heat entered the Eastern Conference Semifinals, both in just five games, and what to know ahead of their semifinal matchup:
The Knicks defeat the Cavaliers
After storming into their first NBA Playoffs since 2018, the Cleveland Cavaliers were unable to extend their appearance after suffering a 106-95 defeat to the New York Knicks.
Apart from losing Game 2 to the Cavs, the Knicks were relatively in control of the entire first round series. And in Game 5 today, the same story was true.
With Jalen Brunson leading the charge with 23 points, and RJ Barrett adding 21, the Knicks overpowered the Cavaliers throughout the game to take the win and advance to the semifinals of the NBA Playoffs.
The Heat stun the Bucks
The Heat has become the first team in the NBA to advance to the semifinals after eliminating the Bucks, ending the series 4-1 in Milwaukee.
Throughout the first three quarters of Game 5, Milwaukee looked like they had enough fuel in the tank to keep the series alive, even coming into the final quarter with a 16-point lead.
However, when they began to struggle offensively, the Heat managed to take advantage to tie it at 111-111.
The Bucks managed to retake a two-point lead with eight seconds left to go. But, a game-tying shot in the last couple of seconds remaining by Butler sent the game into overtime.
The action on the court continued for another period, with both teams looking level with one another. Less than 30 seconds left, the Heat were in the lead by two points. However, after failing to convert their last two attempts, the Bucks were ultimately unable to bring themselves back.
With the victory, the Miami Heat will advance to the semifinals of the 2023 NBA Playoffs, where they will face the New York Knicks.
Knicks vs. Heat — here’s what to know:
The New York Knicks and the Miami Heat competing the semifinals of the Eastern Conference Finals feels an ode to their historic rivalry from the 90s and early 2000s. The last time the two faced off in the Playoffs was in 2012.
Their head-to-head record from the regular season has the Knicks with the advantage, 3-1. They also entered the Playoffs as the fifth seed in the East to the Heat’s seventh.
Thus, with how well their players have been performing offensively and defensively, New York will come into the semis as the favorites to win.
However, Jimmy Butler has been having an outstanding postseason so far, and has proven to be a tough presence to deal with, especially late in the game, as shown in Game 5. The Knicks will have to work hard to slow him down if they want the odds to work in their favor.
Which team has your bet?