Fri, 31 Mar 2023

Luka Doncic gets hurt, Mavericks still top Suns

Field Level Media
27 Jan 2023, 16:05 GMT+10

Spencer Dinwiddie scored a season-high 36 points as the visiting Dallas Mavericks overcame an early injury to star Luka Doncic to beat the Phoenix Suns 99-95 on Thursday night.

Dorian Finney-Smith had 18 points and 12 rebounds, Dwight Powell added 15 points, Tim Hardaway Jr. scored 11, and Reggie Bullock had 10 for Dallas, which snapped the Suns' four-game winning streak.

Doncic, who entered the night as the NBA's leading scorer at 33.8 points per game, exited early in the first quarter due to a sprained left ankle and did not return. X-rays were negative.

Chris Paul and Cameron Johnson led Phoenix with 22 points apiece, while Deandre Ayton had 19 points and 20 rebounds after missing the last three games due to a non-COVID illness. Mikal Bridges scored 16 points and Paul tallied 10 assists.

Phoenix trailed by nine with 3:34 remaining before cutting the deficit to 96-95 on Paul's layup with 19.7 seconds remaining.

Bullock then made the first of two foul shots before missing the second attempt. Powell was fouled while grabbing the rebound and knocked down two free throws to secure the victory.

Dinwiddie helped the Mavericks win for just the third time in 10 games while shooting 5 of 6 from 3-point range and 11 of 14 from the foul line. The veteran point guard also contributed six rebounds and nine assists.

Dinwiddie scored 10 points in the first quarter, which ended with the teams tied at 32. Phoenix trailed by two late in the second period before Dallas scored nine of the final 14 points to take a 54-48 lead into the half.

The Mavericks maintained their lead throughout the third quarter thanks in large part to Dinwiddie, who scored 10 points for the third straight period.

Dallas held a seven-point advantage to start the fourth quarter and stretched its lead to 89-81 on Finney-Smith's trey with 6:55 remaining.

The Suns trailed by nine late in the fourth quarter before scoring five quick points to pull within 95-91 with 2:47 left, setting up the tight finish.

--Field Level Media

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