The Dallas Mavericks (47-31), playing game three of a four-game west coast trip, needed a win against the Sacramento Kings (27-50) to keep the pressure on in the playoff push. It wasn’t pretty or textbook-like but it was a win, none-the-less for Dallas as they beat the Kings 93-91.
How it went down:
Dallas had no answer for Rudy Gay or DeMarcus Cousins, who have tormented the Mavericks all season long. Gay finished with 32 points on 12-18 shooting and also had eight assists. Cousins dropped in 28 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. Luckily for the Mavs nobody else on the team could really do anything.
Dirk Nowitzki had a terrible game for the Mavericks. He scored 15 points but was 5-17 and only grabbed one rebound. Monta Ellis utilized his quickness to beat the Kings defenders on his way to 23 points. Jose Calderon continued his hot-hand from three-point range as he drained four of them on the night.
Vince Carter, making his case for the sixth-man of the year award, also had four threes on the game including two huge threes in the fourth quarter down the stretch. All in all, it was a huge win for the Mavericks. It was a game in which they should have won and they found a way to do just that despite their hall-of-famer not having a great night.
Inside the Numbers:
The fourth quarter continues to belong to Monta and Vince as they had eight and nine points respectively in the quarter.
Dallas’ starting backcourt outscored the Kings’ starting backcourt 37-13.
Samuel Dalembert was the only Mavs player in double-digit rebounding with 11. He continues his dominant performance down low.
Impact Play of the Game:
Shawn Marion and Dirk missed 3-4 free throws with less than 15 seconds left. Thankfully, Cousins missed a 16’ jump shot that would have tied the game at the buzzer.
Step-Up Mav of the Night:
Carter continues to shine in his role off the bench. He seems to hit big shot after big shot for this team when they need and Sunday was no different as he hit two three-pointers in the fourth quarter.
“We just have to keep fighting. It’s going to be tough these last few games, but we just have to stay together, ride the course and get as many wins as we can.” – Monta Ellis
“DeMarcus and Rudy were phenomenal all night. From the beginning on, they looked aggressive. They looked in a groove.” – Dirk Nowitzki
“It’s men, not machines. A guy’s not going to make every shot, all the time.” – Rick Carlisle on Nowitzki’s poor shooting night
The Mavericks will conclude their road trip on Tuesday at the Utah Jazz. Dallas will have a chance to sweep the road trip and move their magic number to 2. The game can be seen on TXA 21 at 8 p.m. CT.