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Mavericks vs. Hornets Recap: Dallas loses to Shorthanded Charlotte 117-109

Dallas dropped a must-win game as the playoff picture in the West begins to cement itself.

NBA: Charlotte Hornets at Dallas Mavericks Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The Mavericks lost to the Hornets, 117-109, dropping their second straight home game and falling two games under .500. This one, to a shorthanded lottery-bound Charlotte team on the second night of a back-to-back. After scoring the game’s opening points, Dallas lost the lead and didn’t see it again for the remainder of the game.

Ask not for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for the Dallas Mavericks.

Luka Doncic came up a little short of a triple-double, putting up 34/8/10 in the loss. Rookie Jaden Hardy had some more positive moments, and it was his energy and shot-making in the second half that made it look like Dallas might get over the hump. Alas, no suck luck.

Seven Hornets scored in double digits including all five starters, but PJ Washington led the team with 28.

Fourth quarter fumes

The Hornets were the team on the back-to-back, but it was Dallas running out of gas late after fighting back from a 21-point deficit.

The addition of Kyrie was supposed to solve at least some of Dallas’ fourth-quarter woes, as he arrived in Dallas as the league’s highest fourth-quarter scorer. Instead, it was an 0-for-4 shooting performance from deep that stalled out the Dallas comeback after they had closed the Hornet’s lead to one. He’s likely still dealing with an injury to his foot, but it wasn’t easy watching him miss those opportunities.

DSJ dagger

A headline that would be reason for celebration in another timeline. In this one, though, it was the former Mavs’ guard drilling a deep three (after winning a coaches’ challenge on a Doncic block) that ended any hope of a Dallas comeback.

It’s almost poetic if the poem was written by Edgar Allan Poe as a sort of gothic horror, which has been an accurate description of watching the Mavericks for much of this season.

Bring out your dead

With the loss, Dallas falls below .500 yet again at the worst possible time. At what point does this team, who has seemingly been nursing injuries to its two all stars, hoping to get them to the postseason in some form of good health, just call it? Is there any benefit to limping across the line to a 10th seed?

Much has been made about the toxicity of the too-online segment of the Mavericks’ fanbase, but that sentiment is now even starting to bleed unavoidably into real life. With Maverick’s governor in attendance and making a sassy t-shirt-based fashion statement regarding his latest detente with league officiating, the home crowd rained some boos down on the team as they headed into a timeout down 18. Things are not hunky-dory in Dallas.

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