"The Stack" 4-17-18

It was vintage Dwyane Wade night in Philadelphia Monday night. Wade scored 28 points as the Heat took down the 76ers 113-103 to even the series 1-1.

The Stack is back on this Tuesday and last night saw some teams get right back into their series on both the court and the ice. Let’s get to a little reaction to all of last night’s playoff games in “the stack” for today, Tuesday, April 17th:

Heat even series with 76ers, Warriors take 2-0 lead on Spurs

Boy did Dwyane Wade turn back the clock last night or what? Wade turned in 28 points off the bench and helped the Heat tear apart the Philadelphia 76ers in the second quarter. They outscored the 76ers 34-13 to take a 56-42 halftime lead. The 76ers couldn’t get much closer. Wade was spectacular. The Heat were also good from the foul line going 24-for-30. The 76ers had 17 offensive rebounds, but overall this was not their best shooting night. They couldn’t buy a shot from beyond the arc going 7-for-36. Credit Miami to a degree, but this was certainly not the 76ers best game they could have played. I still believe they will win this series, but it may take a little longer than five games.

In Oakland, it looked like the San Antonio Spurs were going to take game two, at least for the first half, but that is why they play four quarters and not just two. The Golden State Warriors came out in the second half and dominated, outscoring the Spurs by 21 points in route to their 116-101 victory. Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant were great scoring 31 and 32 points respectively. They are stepping up when they need to in the playoffs. LaMarcus Aldridge did what he could to help the Spurs get the upset as he dropped in 34 points, but it wasn’t enough. This series should be over in no more than five games.

Tuesday’s NBA Playoff games

Washington Wizards @ Toronto Raptors 7 PM ET NBA TV (Raptors lead series 1-0)

Milwaukee Bucks @ Boston Celtics 8 PM ET TNT (Celtics lead series 1-0)

New Orleans Pelicans @ Portland Trailblazers 10:30 PM ET TNT (Pelicans lead series 1-0)

Home teams win every NHL playoff game Monday night

Game threes are incredibly important for teams who find themselves trailing 2-0 in series and having to come back home certainly brings some relief. So it should come as no surprise then (okay I am surprised) that all four home teams won their respective NHL Playoff games last night. In Toronto, the Maple Leafs and Boston Bruins found themselves tied 2-2 with just under six minutes to go in the second period before Auston Matthews broke the tie with his first goal of the series. The Maple Leafs would tally another goal in the third and win 4-2. Boston certainly had their chances. They peppered Maple Leafs goalie Frederik Andersen with 42 shots, but Andersen stood tall stopping 40 of them including all 18 shots on goal in the third period. Solid game by him and a big win for the Maple Leafs.

New Jersey also got a similar boost from playing at home. The Devils scored the final four goals of the game after Steven Stamkos scored a power play goal to put the Tampa Bay Lightning up 2-1. A power play goal, an even strength goal and a shorthanded goal were all a part of the scoring onslaught. There is no love lost between these two teams. Man were there a lot of penalties and fights, especially in the third period. Are the Lightning sending a message that they will be ready in game four? Or were the Devils letting it be known that they will not go quietly? There were what, 68 penalty minutes for the Lightning and 64 for the Devils I believe. We’ll see what carries over to game four.

The Colorado Avalanche have played much better in their series with the Nashville Predators than I thought they would yet still found themselves in a 2-0 series hole. Nathan McKinnon and company were determined not to make it 3-0. The Avalanche star scored two goals and the Avalanche scored the first four goals, chasing Predators goalie Pekka Rinne out of net. The Avalanche would go on to win 5-3. The Predators certainly played harder it looked like after that happened as head coach Peter Laviolette sent a message to the team by taking Rinne out of net, but they couldn’t complete the comeback. I think Nashville will play better in game four, but with the way the Avalanche have looked in this series, don’t be surprised if we go back to Nashville tied 2-2.

The Pacific Division appears like they have two sweeps on their hands. Vegas can sweep the Kings tonight. The San Jose Sharks are on the verge of sweeping the Anaheim Ducks following their 8-1 rout Monday night. It was tied 1-1 after one. The Sharks scored the final seven goals. Two goals in the first four minutes of the second quarter set the tone and then their power play went to work. As the Ducks kept taking penalties, the Sharks kept making them pay. Their final four goals were all scored via the power play. Simply tremendous. The Sharks are proving something here. The Ducks just can’t overcome these injuries.

Tuesday’s NHL Playoff games

Washington Capitals @ Columbus Blue Jackets 7:30 PM ET NBCSN (Blue Jackets lead series 2-0)

Winnipeg Jets @ Minnesota Wild 8 PM ET CNBC (Jets lead series 2-1)

Vegas Golden Knights @ Los Angeles Kings 10:30 PM ET NBCSN (Golden Knights lead series 3-0)

Coming up Wednesday: Reaction to Tuesday’s NHL and NBA Playoff games