Kyrie Irving goes for a handshake from former teammate LeBron James.

Opening night of the NBA season is always filled with surprises, as you never know what to expect. This although, can be good and bad. For the Celtics, the night did not go as planned as SF Gordon Hayward suffered a fractured tibia and dislocated ankle injury which was a gruesome injury that no athlete should have to go through. His status is still unknown, but it is likely he will miss the remainder of the season.

The Warriors/Rockets game kept everyone at the edge of their seats as it was an extremely fast paced game, and ended with an upset. Here’s my analysis of both games:

Celtics at Cavaliers

Amidst Hayward’s injury in the first quarter, the Celtics had the lead and were hoping to upset the favored Cavaliers; but came up short losing 99-102. Forward Jaylen Brown was 11-23 from the FG with 25 points while PG Kyrie Irving had 10 assists and put up 22 points. The Cavaliers on the other hand probably didn’t expect to only win by 3 points as both teams were playing solid defense. With a stacked lineup of many veteran players, The Cavs are definitely a threat in the East this season. Age never seems to be a problem for LeBron James, who at first, was uncertain if he would play due to an ankle injury, but still came out and put up some big numbers. He was 12-19 from the FG with 9 assists and 29 points. Other key contributors for the were Kevin Love who had 15 points, and former Derrick Rose had 2 assists and 14 points. Dwayne Wade had 8 points in his debut for the Cavs. While both teams have a lot of young guys on their bench, it’ll be a work in progress, and the Celtics will have to push through without Hayward.

Rockets at Warriors

An insanely fast paced game is what we saw in the Western Conference as the Rockets upset the Warriors 122-121 on Tuesday. It was initially mistaken at first that Kevin Durant’s shot went in as confetti began to fall and fans were cheering, but the play was reviewed by officials and it was ruled that it Durant’s shot was after the buzzer. With 2:09 remaining in the fourth, the Rockets were trying to tie the game up or get close to it. Forward Trevor Ariza hit a 3 pointer that put Houston within 119-118. Then, SG Patrick McCaw hit a baseline jumper as soon as the Warriors timeout was over, followed by a layup and 2 free throws made by James Harden and P.J. Tucker, respectively. All this resulted in Houston bringing the game to 122-121, which is what the final score ended up being. Now, how does a dominant team like the Warriors, a team which at one point had a 73 game win streak two seasons ago lose on opening night? The answer is simple: Houston played a better game. They were much more consistent with their shots, played more aggressively, and took advantage of driving up the lane. Golden State was the exact opposite as they were sloppy, and getting tired out by the perplexity of Houston’s fast paced offense and defense. Knowing that this is Golden State, they’ll come back even stronger in their next game as they face off against the Pelicans, who actually lost their season opener against the Grizzlies 91-103.

ERIK BENSON is a blogger for The Vidette. He can be reached at esbenso@ilstu.edu. Follow him on Twitter @erik_b001.

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