Paul’s big 4th helps Thunder force Game 7 vs. Rockets

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) — Chris Paul gave the Oklahoma City Thunder at least one more game in the bubble, scoring 15 of his 28 points in the fourth quarter for a 104-100 victory over the Houston Rockets on Monday night in Game 6 of a Western Conference first-round series.

Paul made two free throws with 13.1 seconds left and the game tied at 100, and Danilo Gallinari added two more after a turnover by Russell Westbrook to finish it off.

Game 7 will be Wednesday night, with the winner advancing to face the top-seeded Los Angeles Lakers.

It gives the West two Game 7s, with Denver and Utah set to play theirs on Tuesday.

Gallinari added 25 points.

James Harden had 32 points, eight rebounds and seven assists for the Rockets, while Robert Covington had 18 points and Westbrook scored 17 in his second game back from a right quadriceps strain.

HEAT 115, BUCKS 104

Jimmy Butler scored a playoff career-high 40 points, Goran Dragic added 27 and Miami clamped down defensively in the final three quarters to beat Milwaukee in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series.

Bam Adebayo had 12 points, 17 rebounds and six assists for the fifth-seeded Heat, who are 3-1 overall against the top-seeded Bucks this season. Tyler Herro added 11 points for Miami, which improved to 5-0 in the postseason.

Khris Middleton scored 28 points for Milwaukee, which also dropped Game 1 of its first-round series against Orlando. Brook Lopez had 24 points on 8 for 10 shooting, and Giannis Antetokounmpo had 18 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists for the Bucks.

But Antetokounmpo’s night will likely be best remembered by what he did at the foul line: The reigning MVP went 4 for 12 from the stripe, the worst performance by anyone with at least 12 free-throw attempts in a playoff game since Andre Roberson went 2 for 12 for Oklahoma City on April 23, 2017 against Houston.

Kyle Korver added 11 for the Bucks, who scored 40 points in the first quarter and managed 64 the rest of the way.

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