The Dallas Mavericks lost 119-136 to the Portland Trail Blazers. The defense finds no answer to Damian Lillard and Co., at the same time the Blazers hold Luka Doncic with his worst point tally of the entire season. An explosion by Reggie Bullock doesn’t help much either.
Portland Trail Blazers (20-22) – Dallas Mavericks (24-20) 136:119 (BOXSCORE)
Portland managed to sign off Doncic well, especially in the first half. At the break he had a meager 5 points, in the end it was 15 at 7/19 from the field and 0/5 from downtown. The Slovenian’s previous low of the season was 19 points in December against Minnesota.
Accordingly, the Mavs fell behind by double digits in the first half and then only ran after them. The guests from Texas couldn’t start their own run because the defense didn’t generate enough stops. Portland hit 55.7 percent from the field and 41.5 percent from downtown (17/41 threes), the 136 points scored represented a team best of the season.
Lillard in particular seemed highly motivated from the start to end the Blazers’ five-game streak of bankruptcies. The guard scored 36 points (11/20 FG) and gave out 10 assists. Jusuf Nurkic (22, 11 rebounds) and Anfernee Simons (21, 5 assists) also showed a strong game. Jerami Grant threw in another 16 points and even Josh Hart dropped a few jumpers (11, 5/8 FG).
That was also the case with Bullock on the Mavs side. The 31-year-old seemed to be shooting his way out of his low with 24 points in 8/10 threes, with Spencer Dinwiddie (25, 8/12 FG) also putting in a strong performance. But otherwise Dallas didn’t get enough, the pale Doncic and the absence of the injured Christian Wood could not replace the colleagues. The Mavs already have the chance to take revenge on Monday night.
Luka Doncic doesn’t get going – Mavs go under
Due to a sprained ankle in Wood, the Mavs had to make a change in their starting five. For the first time this season, Doncic, Dinwiddie, Tim Hardaway Jr. (10, 2/7 threes), Bullock and Dwight Powell started the game. Bullock and Dinwiddie in particular were there in the first quarter with several three-pointers, as a team Dallas hit 8/13 from distance, but a buzzerbeater from Frank Ntilikina only put the Mavs at 30:31.
Lillard led the home side’s strong offensive quarter, and Portland also made the game fast after numerous Mavs turnovers. Although the three didn’t fall at first, the Blazers scored well in the second quarter. Lillard in particular attacked the Mavs defense well, Portland temporarily pulled away to +17 and went into the dressing room with a 71:56 lead.
There was relatively little to be seen of Doncic up to this point, Portland sent double teams again and again. His first attempt after the change of sides also landed on the ring, but Lillard raised it to +20 on the other side. But: Bullock finally caught fire, in the third quarter alone he hammered 5 threes through the trap, together with Dinwiddie he at least kept the Mavs within striking distance. But Dallas found little defensive answers, Portland went into the final section 106:90.
Nurkic now came up with some easy shots in the zone, plus he netted a triple. The Blazers lead grew back to 22 points. Shortly thereafter, Hardaway Jr. also hobbled to the bench after twisting his left ankle. In the middle of the quarter, coach Jason Kidd then ordered Doncic and most of the starters to the bench. Portland followed up with a few more triples and the game was finally over.
NBA: The stats leaders in Blazers vs. Mavs
|Points||Damien Lillard (36)||Spencer Dinwiddie (25)|
|rebounds||Yusuf Nurkic (11)||Luka Doncic (6)|
|assists||Damien Lillard (10)||Luka Doncic (10)|
|steals||Gary Payton II (4)||ao Bullock, Doncic (1 each)|
|block||Anne Simons (2)||Doncic, Wright IV, McGee (1 each)|