The NBA champion Cleveland Cavaliers escaped with a 109-108 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Saturday in the opening game of the 2017 playoffs.
Indiana's C.J. Miles missed a wide-open jump shot at the buzzer after the Cavaliers, as they often did in the waning stages of the regular-season, let the game get complicated toward the end.
"It doesn't matter how you get a win in the playoffs. We're one-up," said Cavs superstar LeBron James, who led all scorers with 32 points and also handed out 13 assists and pulled down six rebounds.
Elsewhere on Saturday, Giannis Antetokounmpo tallied 28 points and eight rebounds as the Milwaukee Bucks manhandled the Toronto Raptors 97-83 to open their best-of-seven first round Eastern Conference series.
James has now won 18 playoff openers, but he and the Cavs cut it close in this one.
James missed a three-pointer with 20 seconds left and the Pacers had the ball coming out of a timeout.
Miles got loose but his effort bounced off the rim.
Pacers star Paul George finished with 29 points. His three-pointer with four seconds left had cut the Cavs' lead to one point, setting the stage for Miles's attempt at a game-winner.
Kyrie Irving scored 23 points and Kevin Love added 17, 15 of them in the first half for Cleveland, who led by 12 points late in the third quarter and were up by 10 with 9:04 remaining before the Pacers rallied.
Jeff Teague's three-pointer with 3:31 to play put the Pacers up by two -- after six straight empty possessions for the Cavs.
But James immediately responded with a driving dunk and the Pacers wouldn't get ahead again.
In the West, the San Antonio Spurs hosted the Memphis Grizzlies and the Los Angeles Clippers hosted the Utah Jazz.
The Spurs are making their 20th straight post-season appearance, tied for third all-time.
In Toronto, Malcolm Brogdon delivered 16 points for the Bucks, Greg Monroe finished with 14 points and 15 rebounds, Tony Snell and Matthew Dellavedova added 11 points each for the Bucks.
DeMar DeRozan led the Raptors with 27 points and grabbed nine rebounds, Serge Ibaka added 19 points and 14 rebounds, and Jonas Valanciunas had nine points and nine rebounds.
The Raptors' first-game woes continued as they fell to 0-9 in openers of first round playoff series. They are a dismal 1-10 overall in game ones.
Milwaukee lead by five points at the end of the third quarter and extended it to 14 points after the first four minutes of the fourth.
Antetokounmpo nailed a jump shot with two and a half minutes remaining, giving the Bucks a comfortable 17-point lead.