Chris Paul had 35 points, 10 assists and four steals in his first playoff game Saturday night, lifting New Orleans to a 104-92 come-from-behind victory over Dallas in Game 1 of their first-round series.
"Today, after shootaround, I couldn't go to sleep," Paul said, explaining that he instead tuned in to Game 1 of the Cleveland-Washington series, then some of the San Antonio-Phoenix opener. "I saw the intensity of it ... and I was like, 'Man, this is serious.' "
Then he went out and performed like a playoff veteran, taking the game over with 15 third-quarter points as the Hornets erased a 12-point halftime lead.
"Before we started the second half, I told him ' ... when series like this are up in the air, you've got to go out there and impose your will,' " Hornets coach Byron Scott said.