The Dallas Mavericks defeated the Sacramento Kings 123-119 to keep their dim play-in hopes alive. The game wasn’t particularly pretty, but it was competitive and entertaining. There has been a good deal of talk that the Mavericks should tank in order to improve the chances of keeping their draft pick.
That might very well be the best course of action, but the Mavericks are choosing to compete. Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving both played despite nagging injuries. The entire team fought incredibly hard. Here are the stats to know.
19: Points scored by Irving in the fourth quarter
Irving was not particularly special in the first three quarters as he scored twelve points. He was simply biding his time, as he exploded in the fourth quarter. He has a tendency to make impossibly difficult shots look easy at times, but in this case it just looked like he made a bunch of impossibly difficult shots. His offense won the game down the stretch.
12: Points scored by Christian Wood in the fourth quarter
Wood has been mercurial with the Mavericks. This has not been entirely his fault as his minutes have been ever changing. He was huge tonight. Irving’s heroics would not have mattered if Wood hadn’t supplied the rest of the Maverick’s points in the final quarter, including a huge three late. He also chipped in three blocks as he did his part to secure both his playing time and a win.
5: Threes made by Tim Hardaway Jr.
Following comments made by his father, Hardaway came out and played hard and put up shots. Tonight they went in. Hardaway doesn’t always get enough credit for how hard he plays because of the type of player(designated shooter) that he is.
He has been called a3-and-D player by some this season, and that is just factually inaccurate. He isn’t a good defender per se, but he gives as much effort as any player on the court every single night. That is why his success will always feel deserved.
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