Photos: Dorothy J. Gentry
It was a Mother’s Day gift to end all Mother’s Day gift.
A packed, sold-out house on Sunday afternoon at American Airlines Center were witness to an offensive and defensive onslaught by the Dallas Mavericks against the visiting Phoenix Suns.
When the dust was settled, the Suns’ Chris Paul had fouled out of a game for only the fourth time in his NBA career, and the Mavs had tied their Western Conference semifinal series at two wins apiece with a 111-101 victory.
The best-of-seven series now is down to a best-of-three with Game 5 in Phoenix on Tuesday at 9 p.m. CST and Game 6 back in Dallas on Thursday at 8:30 p.m.
Luka Dončić led the Mavericks with 26 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds. Jalen Brunson finished with18 points. Dorian Finney-Smith had 24 points, all on 3-pointers as he hit 8-of-12 from beyond the arc. He was one triple shy of tying Jason Terry’s all-time playoff 3-pointer record of nine in a game in 2011.
“Coming back home, we talked about one game,” said head coach Jason Kidd. “And that was Game 3. And once that was in the books, we had to focus on Game 4. And understanding what we had to do, we put ourselves in position to win and we finished it.
“But the big thing is these guys are playing hard. They’re playing extremely hard and it’s great to see – picking up full court, diving on the floor for the loose ball, protecting one another is really cool to watch.”
“Our defense won us these two games,” Dončić said. “Our defense was way better than the first two games. I don’t think offense was the problem in any of these games, but if we play defense, I always say we’re a dangerous team.”