The Suns and the Mavericks (3-3) will play for the finals on Sunday. Western Conference in the seventh game after what Luka Doncic will guide Dallas to a clear and flawless victory this Thursday to avoid qualifying (113-86). Slovenian was the absolute owner of the game. 33 points, 11 rebounds, 8 assists and 4 stealsand received very strong support from his teammates. Reggie Bullock (19 points, 5 triples and 7 rebounds), Jalen Brunson (18 points) and Spencer Dinwiddie (15 points) were the perfect match for Doncic’s 16 3-pointers for the Mavericks.
Faced with the Mavericks’ ideal night, the Suns had a nightmare in Dallas. They lost 22 balls (29 points from their opponents), made just 6 3-pointers and put on top-secret performances from their stars. Deandre Ayton was the best (21 points and 11 rebounds), Devin Booker (19 points, 8 turnovers) and Chris Paul (13 points and 5 turnovers) took the victory very painfully. The Suns, who have always been outdone by the Mavericks, relegated to the Milwaukee Bucks in the 2021 NBA Finals, have shown alarming signs of disappointment and desperation, but have a strong lead that Game 7 will be played at home.
Doncic begins, Doncic phrases
Doncic missed his first three shots, but the start was just a distraction, given the way the first quarter ended. Slovenia went up to 11 points in an opening quarter where they left some delicious three-pointers with a step back against Paul for their team to take the lead (28-25). Paul was completely undetected in the first twelve minutes as he recorded no points, rebounds or assists: his only statistical mark was turnover.
Brunson’s smug handling of Doncic’s minutes on the bench, which has always been a concern for the Mavericks. The Suns stayed close, but turnovers became a serious problem for Phoenix as the Mavericks defense controlled Paul and Booker’s offense. With a smashing comeback and counter-attack, Dallas closed the first half with a convincing 19-6 result and landed the first half with good feelings against the dubious Suns (60-45). Doncic led the first half with 18 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists, but the best thing for the Mavericks was the constant presence of players like Brunson, Bullock, Kleber and Dinwiddie. Instead, the Suns landed 8 balls in the first half, Booker failed to score in the second quarter (the first 8), and Paul went into the first half with just 5 points and 2 assists.
After the hiatus, the Mavericks had to face the specter of game five when the Suns brutally crushed them in the third quarter (33-14). But tonight’s story had nothing to do with that. With the intensity in the first half, the Mavericks swayed before the Suns had a chance to react, and Doncic found +20 between Brunson and Powell (8.51 68-48). Phoenix continued with the same pain: turnovers, lack of offensive ideas, and the sad performance of his figures. With all this, the Mavericks, despite having the luxury of almost two consecutive dunks from Doncic, took the evening’s winning scenario to the letter and entered the final quarter with a huge advantage demanding a miracle from the Suns (94-72).
It wasn’t a day for Phoenix’s achievements, so Doncic and company punished the game with lull and the Suns and Mavericks teamed up for Sunday’s final game.