What happened to the last 5 NBA teams to give up 20-point leads in a playoff game

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After leading by as many as 25 points in the first half of Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals, the San Antonio Spurs held a 20-point advantage over the Golden State Warriors at halftime.

However, disaster struck for San Antonio when star forward Kawhi Leonard went down with an ankle injury early in the third quarter.

From there, the Warriors climbed all the way back into the game and eventually ended up winning 113-111, leaving the Spurs searching for answers ahead of Game 2 on Tuesday.

Unfortunately for coach Gregg Popovich's crew, history isn't favorable to teams that blow such large leads in the postseason - as those squads almost always go on to lose that series.

Here's a look back at the last five teams to blow leads of 20 or more points in the playoffs and how they fared after their devastating losses.

2017 Indiana Pacers

Earlier this postseason, Paul George and the Pacers led 74-49 at halftime of Game 3 of their first-round series against the Cleveland Cavaliers.

However, as we all know, LeBron James put the Cavs on his back and refused to let his team lose, scoring 41 points, grabbing 13 rebounds and dishing out 12 assists even as Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love sat for most of the fourth quarter.

That impressive 119-114 comeback victory gave Cleveland a 3-0 series lead. LeBron and the Cavs would go on to win Game 4 to complete the first-round sweep.

2012 Memphis Grizzlies

The Grizzlies didn't get off to a great start in the 2012 postseason, blowing a 27-point lead to the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 1 of their first-round series.

Clippers star Chris Paul hit two free throws with 23 seconds left to seal the win for Los Angeles and finished the game with 14 points in the 99-98 victory.

Memphis rebounded from the devastating loss nicely, forcing the series to go seven games before the Clippers ultimately prevailed.

2012 Los Angeles Clippers

As noted above, the Clippers got their 2012 postseason run off to a great start by erasing a 27-point deficit in Game 1 of their first-round series against the Grizzlies.

However, Chris Paul and company got a taste of their own medicine in the Western Conference semifinals. In Game 3 against the San Antonio Spurs, the Clippers led by as many as 24 points before eventually losing 96-86.

That gave the Spurs a 3-0 series lead, and they'd go on to win Game 4 102-99 to advance to the conference finals, sending the Clippers home to think about what could have been.

2011 Dallas Mavericks

Thankfully for this year's Spurs' team, this list isn't completely filled with stories of doom and gloom.

In fact, the 2011 Dallas Mavericks rebounded from blowing a 23-point lead in Game 4 of their first-round series against the Portland Trail Blazers to eliminate their foes in six games en route to an eventual victory over the Miami Heat in the NBA Finals.

Dirk Nowitzki and the Mavs managed to knock off the Heat in six games in the Finals, sending the first LeBron James-Dwyane Wade-Chris Bosh Miami squad home empty-handed.

2008 Los Angeles Lakers

The Lakers met the Boston Celtics - their biggest rivals - in the 2008 NBA Finals and, trailing 2-1 in the best-of-seven series, held a 24-point lead in the first half of Game 4.

However, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo led the Celtics to a come-from-behind 97-91 victory to take a commanding 3-1 series lead.

Though the Lakers bounced back to win Game 5 at home, the Celtics clinched their record 17th NBA championship in Game 6 in Boston.

San Antonio Spurs
Southwest Division
Western Conference
Chris Paul
L.A. Clippers
Pacific Division
LeBron James
Cleveland Cavaliers
Central Division
Eastern Conference
Kobe Bryant
L.A. Lakers

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