NBA

NBA: Doncic and Irving shine as Mavericks take 3-0 lead on Timberwolves

By Sports Desk May 26, 2024

Luka Dončić and Kyrie Irving each scored 33 points to send the Dallas Mavericks a win away from reaching the NBA Finals with Sunday's 116-107 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves in Game 3 of the Western Conference finals. 

WIth its star guard tandem leading the way, the fifth-seeded Mavericks dominated the game's final five minutes to take a commanding 3-0 lead in the best-of-seven series. Dallas can eliminate the third-seeded Timberwolves and earn its first trip to the Finals since 2011 when it hosts Game 4 on Tuesday.

No team in NBA history has come back to win a best-of-seven play-off series after losing the first three games.

That's the challenge now facing Minnesota, which clung to a 104-102 lead with five minutes left before the Mavericks seized control for good with a 14-1 run.

Anthony Edwards finished with 26 points for the Timberwolves, but just four of those came in the pivotal fourth quarter. Minnesota's other All-Star, Karl-Anthony Towns, was held scoreless in the final period after recording 14 points over the first three quarters.

Irving had 14 fourth-quarter points and six during the deciding spurt, which he began with a driving layup that tied the game at 104-104 with 4:35 left. P.J. Washington then sent Dallas ahead by knocking down a 3-pointer on its next possession, and the Mavericks held Minnesota without a field goal until Edwards scored the game's final points on a layup with 15.3 seconds left.

Dallas built a lead as large as 12 points in the first half and went into the break with a 60-52 advantage behind Doncic's 15 points and 14 from Irving. The Mavericks were up by 10 near the midway stage of the third quarter before Minnesota reversed momentum with an 13-1 run.

Edwards had eight straight points during the flurry, along with an assist on Naz Reid's layup that gave the Timberwolves a 79-77 edge with 3:54 left in the third. 

Three-point shooting also played a part in Dallas' victory, as the Mavs finished 14 of 28 from beyond the arc. The Timberwolves were 9 of 30 from 3-point range, with Towns missing all eight of his attempts. 

 

Related items

  • Celtics' NBA title win will be remembered for the rest of my life, says Tatum Celtics' NBA title win will be remembered for the rest of my life, says Tatum

    Jayson Tatum says the Boston Celtics' 18th NBA title is a "night I will remember for the rest of my life".

    The Celtics capped a dominant season by cruising to a 106-88 victory over the Mavericks in Game 5 of the NBA finals on Monday, capturing their first league championship since 2008.

    After recording the league's best regular-season record at 64-18, Boston continued that fine form in the post-season, going 16-3 to earn their record-breaking 18th title, moving them above the Los Angeles Lakers.

    After losing Game 4 on the road, the Celtics responded in style, with Tatum the standout performer, getting 31 points, eight rebounds and 11 assists.

    "I mean, this is going to be a night that I will remember for the rest of my life, from the game, the celebration, these moments," Tatum said.

    "Over the last couple years, we had some tough losses at home in the playoffs. We've lost the NBA championship at home in front of our fans. We had a chance to beat Miami in Game 6 a few years ago and lost that one.

    "So, to have a big win - the biggest win that you could have in front of your home crowd - I felt like that was really important to go out there and do everything in my power to make sure we won this game tonight."

    "It means the world," Tatum said on stage. "It's been a long time. And I'm grateful."

    Kristaps Porzingis missed Games 3 and 4 with a leg injury but managed 16 minutes off the bench to help his team to victory in the decider.

    He confirmed after the game that he would need surgery on the injury but did not want to miss out on the occasion.

    "I think something could have happened, for sure, especially compensating now on the other leg now, which I just came back from," Porzingis told ESPN.

    "There was definitely some added risk, but I didn't care. I was like, 'I want to give everything I can and then fix it after if I need to.'"

    "Since last game, I've been thinking ... 'How can I get my body ready for next game?'. Like, no matter how it is. And today I was like, 'I'm going to try everything possible to get out there.'

    "And, man, it feels great to be a champion."

  • Boston Celtics capture record 18th NBA title Boston Celtics capture record 18th NBA title

    Jayson Tatum delivered a magnificent performance in Game 5 of the NBA Finals with 31 points, eight rebounds and 11 assists, and the Boston Celtics capped a dominant season by cruising to a 106-88 victory over the Dallas Mavericks on Monday to capture their first league championship since 2008.

    Returning home off a 38-point Game 4 loss that extended the series, the Celtics bounced back with authority by leading the clincher from start-to-finish to put the finishing touches on an unquestionably title-worthy 2023-24 campaign.

    After recording the league's best regular-season record at 64-18, Boston went 16-3 in the post-season to earn the 18th NBA title in franchise history, breaking a tie with the Lakers for the most by any team.

    Jaylen Brown compiled 21 points, eight rebounds and six assists in Game 5 and was named Finals MVP. The All-Star forward averaged 20.8 points, 5.4 rebounds and five assists per game for the series in addition to playing lock-down defence on Mavericks star Kyrie Irving, who was held under 39 per cent shooting in three of Dallas' four losses.

     

  • Doncic: Mavericks will 'believe until the end' after avoiding Finals sweep Doncic: Mavericks will 'believe until the end' after avoiding Finals sweep

    Luka Doncic's Dallas Mavericks will "believe until the end" after they kept their NBA title hopes alive with a Game 4 victory over the Boston Celtics.

    The Celtics headed to Dallas on Friday with the chance to clinch a first NBA Championship since 2008, up 3-0 in the series and looking to get the job done on the road.

    However, Dallas dominated on their home court, cruising to a 122-84 blowout victory that means Boston will have to wait until at least Monday to seal a record-breaking 18th NBA title.

    No team has ever come from 3-0 down in an NBA playoff series, but Doncic says his Mavericks team will not let that deflate their hopes of pulling off a hugely unlikely comeback.

    "Like I said at the beginning of the series, it's first to four," Doncic told reporters. "We're going to believe until the end.

    "So we've just got to keep going. I have big belief in this team that we can do it."

    Doncic was facing criticism heading into Game 4 after fouling out in the latter stages of the previous contest, but he led the way with 29 points on Friday to help his team ease to victory.

    Kyrie Irving believes Doncic proved the doubters wrong with his Game 4 showing, saying: "I think he made a few people eat their words in a healthy way.

    "I think what you're seeing is him just taking accountability as best he can at this point in his life. He's a young person, still trying to figure it out. I give him that grace. 

    "I think it's just lessons being learned. When he is locked in like that, not paying attention to the refs, he's a huge, impactful player for us and a great leader for us. We want him to stay consistent on that and not be too hard on himself either."

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.