The Dallas Mavericks dove in for round two against the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday night, winning 104-99 thanks to a fourth quarter shooting surge. The win brings Dallas back to .500 with a slate of winnable games on the horizon.
Luka Doncic led the way for the Mavericks, after an early exit from Monday’s matchup where he scored just 19 points. He finished the win with 25 points, nine rebounds, and 10 assists.
Here are the numbers that told the story of Wednesday’s game.
6: fourth quarter three pointers
The Mavericks were ice cold from deep for the first three quarters of the game, shooting under 25 percent. The fourth quarter flipped and the team got hot, connecting on 6-of-10 attempts — two threes for each of Spencer Dinwiddie, Tim Hardaway Jr., and Reggie Bullock. It helped them secure the lead with a few minutes left.
Sometimes it’s as easy (or frustrating) as hitting the open shots. It was the difference Wednesday night in a badly needed win.
50: Timberwolves points in the paint
This isn’t a number that tells us how the Mavericks won. In fact, it isn’t common that a team could give up that many points in the paint and still pull out the win.
The team is banged up. While they were never threatening protecting the rim, missing Maxi Kleber exposes it more. Rudy Gobert, returning to the lineup tonight, had 19 points and 15 rebounds. The Mavericks will continue to be challenged in the lane until they find a new scheme or solution defensively.
85: team free throw percentage
In the seven games since the free-throw debacle against the Milwaukee Bucks (where they shot 41.7-percent from the line in a one point loss) the team is shooting 79.3 percent. Not a perfect number by any means but solid improvement.
Inside the final minute of tonight’s game the team shot 5-of-6 from the line. It sealed the win, and can hopefully be confidence boost for a team who is struggling in startling ways from the charity stripe.
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