Patty Mills played his role as the Spurs headed to the Western Conference finals

Patty Mills played his role as the Spurs headed to the Western Conference finals Photo: Getty Images

MIAMI- Up-tempo Australian guard Patty Mills chimed in with 18 points as San Antonio trounced Portland 104-82 on Wednesday to storm into the NBA conference finals.

After advancing to the last four of the playoffs for the third straight year, the Spurs will take on either Oklahoma city or the Los Angeles Clippers.

Miami also made it through to the conference finals by clinching a 4-1 series win, although the Heat did it in much more dramatic fashion, overcoming an eight-point deficit with five minutes remaining to beat the Brooklyn Nets 96-94.

Danny Green and Kawhi Leonard scored 22 points apiece for the Spurs, while Mills' 18-point haul helped cover for an injury to star guard Tony Parker.

Mills had provided a huge spark even before Parker's exit.

The energetic Australian sprinted for a layup after tipping away C.J. McCollum's dribble in the backcourt.

A possession later, Mills blocked Damien Lillard's three-pointer, igniting a fast break that led to Green's first triple of the game.

The performance was Mills' best in a playoff game.

San Antonio remain on track for another NBA Finals showdown against Miami, who won a hard-fought seven-game series last season.

LaMarcus Aldridge had 21 points for Portland, while Lillard added 17 points and 10 assists.

Miami's Ray Allen scored a three-pointer with 32 seconds left to cap the memorable comeback against the Nets, aided by 29 points from LeBron James and 28 from Dwyane Wade.

James made one of two free throws with 9.5 seconds left to put the Heat up by two, and the Nets almost failed to get a potentially game-tying shot off after Paul Pierce lost it out of bounds, but it stayed with Brooklyn after replay.

However the Nets still couldn't get a shot away: Allen knocked the ball away from Joe Johnson as he made his move, and time expired.

Johnson had 34 points, Pierce scored 19 and Deron Williams had 17 for the Nets.

Miami is bidding for a fourth straight trip to the NBA Finals - something only the Lakers and Celtics franchises have accomplished.

James is heading there for the sixth time in eight seasons, the first two of those trips coming with Cleveland in 2007 and 2009.

-AAP