With the NBA down to the last four teams in this years playoff finals, the remaining sides know there is no margin for error at this stage of the competition as they bid for the ultimate glory. We take a look at the action from the opening matches in the Eastern and Western conference.
The first match of this season's conference finals came from the East where the first and second seeds go head-to head in a series challenging for a place in the NBA final.
It was the home court advantage which helped the Indiana Pacers secure an opening game victory, as they saw off LeBron James and the Miami Heat 107-96 on Sunday night at the Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
Paul George hit 24 points with four rebounds and he was adequately backed up by David West who added 19 points and seven rebounds for the Pacers who put in a dominant performance that saw them win the first three quarters to put them ahead going into the fourth.
Despite Miami edging the fourth and LeBron finishing with 25 points and 10 rebounds they could not scrape back the deficit which had built up against them and the Pacers take a 1-0 series lead into Game 2, a first for them in this year's playoffs.
In the Western Conference, MVP Kevin Durant led his team mates to San Antonio where they faced a fired up Spurs, and despite Durant top scoring in the match, he could not stop the home side from racing to an early series lead.
Tim Duncan was the main scorer for the Spurs at the AT&T Center, adding 27 and nine rebounds, whilst notable mention went to Manu Ginobili who scored 18 off the bench on the night.
Serge Ibaka was a notable absentee from the Thunder line up and the hosts exploited the hole he left behind time and again, although in Russell Westbrook and Durant, OKC have players who can snatch a game at any time, and they threatened to do just that.
With the Spurs up 67-59 at half time they increased the lead by three more just into the third, however Westbrook and Durant started a comeback and within seven minutes they had turned the tide and the Thunder led 76-75.
The visitors defence though could not match their attacking power and San Antonio took back the control to lead 89-92 as the fourth quarter began, and they didn't look back from there. A strong last period saw them end up 122-105 winners and more importantly 1-0 leaders in the series ahead of Game 2 on Wednesday night.
Write for GiveMeSport! Sign-up to the GMS Writing Academy here: http://gms.to/1a2u3KU