Mills, Sim­mons fall short


AUS­TRALIA’S Patty Mills scored 21 points but it was not enough as the San An­to­nio Spurs fell again to the reign­ing NBA cham­pion Golden State War­riors.

The War­riors won 116-101 in Oak­land yes­ter­day to take a 2-0 lead in the best- of-seven play­off se­ries with Kevin Dur- ant lead­ing the way with 32 points. Game three will be in San An­to­nio to­mor­row and game four on Mon­day.

Mills’ 21 points was a per­sonal play­off record and a re­turn to form af­ter the strug­gles he suf­fered in game one on Sun­day. He was again given the dif­fi­cult de­fen­sive task to guard the taller Klay Thomp­son, who had 31 points in­clud­ing con­nect­ing on five of his eight three-point at­tempts.

LaMar­cus Aldridge was the best for the Spurs with 34 points and 12 re­bounds.

In Philadel­phia Ben Sim­mons and his high-fly­ing 76ers crashed back to earth with a 113-103 loss to the Mi­ami Heat in game two of their play­off se­ries.

The 76ers en­tered Mon­day’s game in Philadel­phia on a 17-game win streak and ap­peared set to rally from a 16point fourth quar­ter deficit to win. With Sim­mons push­ing the ball and the 76ers’ shoot­ers start­ing to hit their mark they cut the deficit to two with four min­utes to go, but it was Heat veteran Dwyane Wade who came off the bench, stead­ied the Heat and hit clutch bas­kets.

The Heat’s vic­tory lev­els the best-of-seven se­ries 1-1.

Sim­mons flirted with an­other triple-dou­ble with 24 points, eight as­sists and eight re­bounds. The 36-year-old Wade top-scored with 28 points.

The Heat game plan was to be more ag­gres­sive com­pared to their lop­sided loss in game one on Sun­day, with spe­cial at­ten­tion and a ro­ta­tion of play­ers, in­clud­ing Wade guard­ing Sim­mons.

Wade was im­pressed with the 21-year-old from Mel­bourne.

“That kid is not even a kid,” Wade said. “He’s a bas­ket­ball player, man. He’s great.

“He does so many dif­fer­ent things for his team.”

Philadel­phia coach Brett Brown said the Heat’s ag­gres­sion was the de­cid­ing fac­tor, par­tic­u­larly by pres­sur­ing Sim­mons when he brought the ball up the court.

“I thought the phys­i­cal­ity of the game, I give them credit,” Brown said. “They were bend­ing us back­wards.”

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