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Nuggets top Jazz in overtime; Raptors, Celtics take 1-0 series leads

Toronto Raptors forward Pascal Siakam (L) shoots over defending Brooklyn Nets center Jarrett Allen (R) during the third quarter of a first-round playoff game Monday at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando, Fla. Photo by John G. Mabanglo/EPA-EFE
Toronto Raptors forward Pascal Siakam (L) shoots over defending Brooklyn Nets center Jarrett Allen (R) during the third quarter of a first-round playoff game Monday at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando, Fla. Photo by John G. Mabanglo/EPA-EFE

Aug. 17 (UPI) -- The Denver Nuggets edged the Utah Jazz in overtime and the Toronto Raptors and Boston Celtics each took 1-0 series leads as the NBA playoffs kicked off Monday.

The Nuggets overcame a 57-point outing from Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell to open the postseason with a 135-125 win inside the league's bubble in Orlando, Fla. Mitchell's 57 points were the most in Jazz postseason history and the third-highest total in an NBA playoff game, trailing only Michael Jordan (63) and Elgin Baylor (61).

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Nuggets guard Jamal Murray had a team-high 36 points -- 10 of those in overtime -- to counter Mitchell's offensive explosion. Star big man Nikola Jokic finished with 29 points and 10 rebounds for Denver.

Jazz sharpshooter Joe Ingles scored 19 points, and Rudy Gobert had 17 points, seven rebounds and four blocks.

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Game 2 is set for Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the defending NBA champion Raptors earned a dominant 134-110 win over the short-handed Brooklyn Nets in the second game of the day.

Raptors guard Fred VanVleet had a team-best 30 points on 8-of-10 shooting from 3-point range and 11 assists. Pascal Siakam recorded a double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds.

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All-Star guard Kyle Lowry had 16 points, seven boards and six assists. Serge Ibaka dropped 22 points in 26 minutes off the bench.

The Nets, playing without injured stars Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, were led by Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot, who scored a team-high 26 points in 33 minutes off the bench. Caris LeVert had 15 points and 15 assists, while Joe Harris scored 19 points on 8-of-14 shooting.

Game 2 in the best-of-seven series is scheduled for Wednesday afternoon.

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In the third game of the opening round of the playoffs, the Celtics held off the Philadelphia 76ers 109-101 to grab the series lead.

Jayson Tatum had career playoff highs of 32 points and 13 rebounds, and Jaylen Brown notched 29 points, six rebounds, four assists and three steals. Brown scored 15 of his 29 points in the fourth quarter.

Kemba Walker added 19 points for the Celtics. Gordon Hayward, who appeared to injure his ankle in the final quarter and limped off the court, finished with 12 points.

Joel Embiid led the 76ers with 26 points and 16 rebounds. Josh Richardson and Alec Burks each added 18 points.

The teams will meet Wednesday in Game 2.

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