March Madness: Booker, Phoenix Snap Mavs’ Hot Streak At Buzzer
Just when the Dallas Mavericks were looking to continue their hot streak, they ran into a familiar foe in Devin Booker.
Devin Booker and the Phoenix Suns defeated Dallas 100-98 tonight and snapped the Mavs’ four-game win streak. Suffice it to say, this isn’t the way the Mavericks were hoping to end their home stand.
Some key points coming into tonight’s matchup: Dallas is 2-10 on the second night of a back-to-back and had split their season series against Phoenix thus far. Also, the Mavs were without Center Nerlens Noel (left knee soreness) who missed his second consecutive game. He is listed as day-to-day and hopeful to play Monday against Toronto.
Dallas jumped out to an early 9-4 lead all thanks to Dirk Nowitzki starting hot. He scored all nine points and would finish the first quarter with 11 on 4-4 shooting. That would prove to be a much needed boost as the Mavs struggled to finish off the quarter. The same would be true for the second quarter. Dallas would outscore Phoenix 8-1 to begin but find themselves clinging to a 47-45 lead.
Phoenix would stay close thanks to Devin Booker’s 11 points and T.J. Waren’s 10. They provided all the answers to every attempt Dallas made to run away with the game.
The second half is where Booker would take over the game. He would go on to score 25 of his game-high 36 points in the second half. The Mavericks had no answers for him. He has now averaged 32.3 points against Dallas this season.
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Dallas would try their best to gain control of the game late in the fourth. Dirk found a wide open Devin Harris at the top of the key for three, which gave Dallas a 96-92 lead with 2:03 left. Dallas would only manage to score two points from thereon out.
With the game tied 98-98 with 10 seconds remaining, Booker managed to hit a contested jumper over Wesley Matthews for the win at the buzzer.
Dirk would finish the game with 23 points on 10-14 shooting and Harrison Barnes would add another 23 points despite his struggle from the field (5-16 FG, 13-14 FT). Wesley Matthews and Seth Curry struggled heavily, combining for 10 points on 2-14 shooting while Devin Harris and Yogi Ferrell accounted for 14 and 13, respectively.
With this loss, the Mavs (28-37) move to two games out of the eighth and final playoff seed in the Western Conference. They will look to bounce back on Monday when they travel up North to face the Toronto Raptors.
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Led by Demar DeRozan, the new look Raptors will be no easy matchup but we’ve seen this Mavericks team bounce back against tougher competition before.