The Dallas Mavericks defeated the New Orleans Pelicans 125-120 on Monday afternoon. The Mavericks came out to a dominating start against a disinterested Pelicans team. The Mavericks outscored the Pelicans 33-17 in the first quarter and appeared to be on their way to a routine win.
Then the Pelicans roared back and scored over 40 points in both the second and third quarters. The Mavericks were able to remain close to the Pelicans because of torrid shooting, specifically from Tim Hardaway Jr.
The game came down to a close battle at the end and the Pelicans wilted. The Mavericks got in the bonus early in the fourth and were able to survive a very scary last couple of minutes including a good look from Brandon Ingram that would have tied the game. Here are the stats to know.
42: Points scored by Kyrie Irving
With Luka Doncic out, the Mavericks relied on Kyrie to handle a yeoman’s workload and he did just that. Irving also chipped in seven rebounds, seven assists and one block in 41 minutes. He was credited with no steals though he played a very solid defensive game and had multiple deflections. Perhaps most impressively, he was able to get to the line 15 times.
41: Points scored by Time Hardaway Jr
Hardway kept the Mavericks in the game when the Pelicans were getting everything they wanted at the rim. He made 9-of-15 threes and all 10 of his free throws. He didn’t do a whole lot besides score as he only had two rebounds, two assists and one steal, but that is ok. He is here to be a sniper, and he was just that today.
18: Threes made by the Mavericks
The Mavericks made 18 threes while the Pelicans made only seven. That difference of 11 made threes is a difference of 33 points. It can be reductive to reduce basketball games to which team made the most shots, but that was honestly what decided this game.
The Mavericks are a much higher volume three point shooting team and they took 20 more threes than the Pelicans. It is often said that father time is undefeated, but so is math. The Pelicans gave it a good try but they were simply unable to defeat the math.