NBA

Luka and Kyrie combine for 82 points in Mavericks win, Warriors blow out the Clippers

By Sports Desk March 03, 2023

Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving made some franchise history during the Dallas Mavericks' 133-126 home win against the Philadelphia 76ers on Thursday.

It was the first time ever two Mavericks team-mates scored at least 40 points each in the same game, with Doncic shooting 13-of-22 for his 42 points, while Irving was 15-of-22 for 40 points.

The duo also combined for 18 assists, eight rebounds and four steals, while hitting 13-of-21 from three-point range.

It was a close contest through a high-scoring first half, but after Dallas came out of the locker room leading 71-67, they put their foot on the gas.

Dallas put together a 39-24 third period to jump out to a 20-point lead, and the final score was flattering for the 76ers, who trailed by 14 with under three minutes remaining before a garbage-time run.

Philadelphia's failure was no fault of their top trio, with Joel Embiid putting together 35 points (13-of-21 shooting), eight rebounds and two steals, while James Harden had 27 points (eight-of-12 shooting) with 13 assists, and Tyrese Maxey added 29 points (12-of-21).

The win gets the Mavericks back on the right foot after dropping five of their past six, now sitting sixth in the Western Conference at 33-31.

Philadelphia fell to 40-22, but remain well clear in the Eastern Conference's third seed.

Poole goes for a splash

A 34-point Jordan Poole eruption led a second-half trouncing by the Golden State Warriors in their 115-91 home blowout against the Los Angeles Clippers.

Poole finished nine-of-20 from the field, five-of-12 from deep and 11-of-12 from the free throw line, and all five of his three-pointers came in the second half as Golden State took the third and fourth quarters by a combined margin of 70-35.

Kawhi Leonard played an efficient game despite his side's struggles, shooting eight-of-12 from the field for 21 points, seven rebounds, two steals and two blocks.

The win is the Warriors' fourth in a row, and they now sit fifth in the West at 33-30 on the back of the NBA's fourth-best home record (26-7).

Wizards stay in the hunt

The Washington Wizards fended off the resurgent Toronto Raptors 119-108 to keep themselves in the thick of the Eastern Conference Play-In Tournament placings.

Kyle Kuzma led the way against a Raptors team that came into the contest with 10 wins from their past 12, scoring a game-high 30 points on 10-of-24 shooting with five rebounds and five assists.

Kristaps Porzingis added 25 points (eight-of-12 shooting) and two blocks, while defensive specialist Delon Wright flashed some ability as a starting point guard, racking up 11 assists to go with his six rebounds and three steals.

The Wizards have now won six of their past nine, improving to 30-32 to create a 1.5-game buffer between themselves and the Chicago Bulls in the race for the 10th seed.

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    Jaylen Brown hailed the Boston Celtics' never-say-die attitude after his last-gasp 3-pointer teed up their overtime win in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals.

    The Indiana Pacers were just 6.1 seconds away from a 117-114 road win in the opening game of the series on Tuesday, only for Brown to sink a 3 over Pascal Siakam from the corner to level things up.

    Two Tyrese Haliburton free throws put the Pacers back in front in overtime, but Jayson Tatum scored 10 of his game-high 36 points in the additional period as Boston triumphed 133-128.

    Jrue Holiday supported Tatum with 28 points, while Brown added 26. All three players finished with three steals apiece as Indiana committed 21 turnovers.

    Speaking after the dramatic finale, Brown said: "Welcome to the NBA playoffs! You've just got to manage your emotions. Anything can happen. 

    "It's not over until the final buzzer sounds. It's not over until it’s over. We found a way to win the game at the very end."

    Holiday echoed those sentiments, adding: "We've seen crazy stuff happen all the time. 

    "We don't think we've lost a game until we've actually lost the game. That's part of the reason why we were so resilient towards the end.

    "A couple of turnovers, a great shot, a great look by JB, or at the other end if we make a couple other shots that were wide open it could be a completely different game. 

    "We're just the type of team that's going to keep on fighting no matter how long and no matter what it takes."

    The Celtics host Game 2 on Thursday as they target a first NBA Finals appearance since 2021-22, when they were runners-up to the Golden State Warriors.

    Asked how Boston will approach Game 2, Tatum said: "Don't relax, it'll be different circumstances. The first two rounds we won our Game 1 by a wide margin, so maybe human nature played into that. 

    "But tonight being a close game, going into overtime, we certainly felt like we should have won and we could have played better."

  • NBA: Tatum, Brown key Celtics' OT win in Eastern Conference finals opener NBA: Tatum, Brown key Celtics' OT win in Eastern Conference finals opener

    Jayson Tatum scored 10 of his 36 points in overtime and the Boston Celtics capitalised on some sloppy play by the Indiana Pacers for a 133-128 victory in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals on Tuesday night.

    Jrue Holiday had 28 points and Jaylen Brown added 26, none bigger than his tying 3-pointer with 6.1 seconds left in regulation.

    The Celtics finished with 11 steals - three each by Brown, Tatum and Holiday. They became the first team in NBA playoff history to have three players record 25 points and three steals in a game. 

    Game 2 is Thursday night in Boston.

    Tyrese Haliburton had 25 points and 10 assists for the Pacers, who scored 56 points in the paint against a Celtics team missing injured 7-footer Kristaps Porziņģis. The Pacers, though, committed 21 turnovers.

    Indiana twice turned the ball over with a three-point lead in the final 30 seconds of regulation. Brown’s 3 from the corner with Pascal Siakam in his face tied it at 117.

    Tyrese Haliburton sank three free throws after he was fouled with 1:46 to go in overtime to put the Pacers ahead 123-121, but Tatum completed a three-point play 34 seconds later to give Boston the lead for good.

    Tatum’s 3 following another Indiana turnover with 43 seconds left extended the lead, and he hit two free throws with nine seconds left to seal the win.

  • Victor Wembanyama makes history with All-Defensive team selection Victor Wembanyama makes history with All-Defensive team selection

    San Antonio Spurs star Victor Wembanyama became the first rookie to be voted to the NBA’s All-Defensive first team when the league unveiled the voting on Tuesday.

    Wembanyama received 98 of a possible 99 first-team votes to add to an impressive list of accolades after his first NBA season.

    Rudy Gobert, the NBA’s Defensive Player of the Year, was the only unanimous first-team selection.

    Gobert and Wembanyama were joined on the first team by the Miami Heat’s Bam Adebayo, the Los Angeles Lakers’ Anthony Davis and the New Orleans Pelicans’ Herb Jones.

    Gobert was voted All-Defence for the seventh time in his career, all on the first team.

    Adebayo, long considered a top-tier defender, was selected to the first team for the first time in his career. Even the veterans, however, were appreciative of Wembanyama’s rookie campaign.

    “Coming into this league, obviously he had high expectations because he's 7-3 and shooting step-back 3s. I think a lot of people paid attention more to that than what he actually did on the defensive end,” Adebayo said of Wembanyama. “So, for him to get first team, first come around, it's obviously a great accolade for him.”

    Wembanyama led the league with 3.58 blocked shots per game, over a block more per game than any other player. The towering Frenchman was also eighth in the league at 10.6 rebounds per game and ranked in the top 25 with 1.24 steals per game.

    This was the first season of position-less voting for the All-Defence teams, leading to a strong preference for interior defenders, but perimeter players were well-represented on the second team.

    The Chicago Bulls’ Alex Caruso, the Orlando Magic’s Jalen Suggs, the Minnesota Timberwolves’ Jaden McDaniels and Boston Celtics backcourt mates Jrue Holiday and Derrick White were voted to the All-Defensive second team.

    The league will announce its three All-NBA teams on Wednesday.

     

     

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