Home » Mavericks continue trend, lose Game One

Mavericks continue trend, lose Game One

by Tyler Lennon

The Dallas Mavericks opened their best-of-seven Western Conference Finals series on the road against the Golden State Warriors Wednesday night. The Mavericks entered the game as the underdogs, both in the series and in Game One, and were looking to turn the tide in their favor.

The game opened with a tough first frame for the Mavericks, one in which they were unable to get their shots to fall. Despite getting numerous great looks, Dallas went just 3-19 behind the 3-point line, resulting in a 28-18 first quarter for the Warriors.

Dallas opened the second quarter with some momentum and even began to chip away at the deficit. They were able to get within two points, although Golden State quickly put an end to the Mavericks run.

The Warriors ended the first half on a strong note, going on a 19-12 run to end the half. What was once a two-point game was back to a 54-45 lead for Golden State as they went to the locker room to get ready for the second half.

Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic had decent stats in the first half, putting up 18 points, while also grabbing four rebounds and dishing out a pair of assists. Despite his stat line, Doncic was a -13 in point differential, while point guard Jalen Brunson led the team with a -1, with one more minute played than Doncic.

Dallas opened the second half in a similar fashion to the way they opened the second half in Game Five of the Phoenix series. Although they shot better from the field this time, they couldn’t create any stops on the defensive end as Golden State added another 10 points to their lead. Dallas scored 24 points on 45% shooting, while the Warriors scored 34 points on 60% shooting, all but deciding the game before the fourth quarter even started.

With a large deficit ahead of them and a long series still to go, Dallas turned to their bench for a decent portion of the final frame. Golden State continued to score at a decent slip, as they put Game One away by a commanding final score of 112-87.

Opening the series by losing the first game is hardly a new feeling for Dallas, as they saw the same thing happen in each of their first two playoff rounds. The Mavericks answered back in each series, beating Utah in six games and beating the Phoenix Suns in seven games. 

Friday’s Game Two will be a pivotal one for the Mavericks, as they look to even up the series and avoid falling behind 2-0. Golden State used a very balanced attack offensively in Game One, getting 10 or more points from seven different players.

For Dallas, this series could be decided entirely by how well they are shooting. A tough sooting first quarter put them behind early and they were never quite able to get their way fully back into things. 

For the game, Dallas shot just 36% from the field and even worse they made just 11 of their 48 3-point attempts. The poor shooting wasn’t even a result of being forced to take bad shots, as they missed a number of wide open looks. 

“No, there were a lot of great looks that just didn’t go down. It happens. It’s basketball,” head coach Jason Kidd said after the game. “Hopefully we get those same looks in Game Two and we believe we’ll make them.”

Kidd was also asked about once again starting the series down 1-0 and his teams ability to bounce back from it. “There’s a team out there that’s won a championship starting the same way, losing the first game. So that’s a positive.”

“We’ve always found a way to answer, so we don’t have to look too far but at ourselves of how we’ve gotten better,” Kidd added. “We’ve lost two games in a row on the road and found a way to get back in the series. We’ve lost the first game and gotten back into the series. This is one game. They did their part. Now we’ve got to figure out, again, making shots helps our defense, but give them credit, they were good tonight.”

The series will resume Friday for Game Two, once again at Golden State. Friday’s match is set for 8 p.m. and will air on TNT.

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