Dallas Mavericks lose heartbreaker to Nuggets in summer league

Dallas Mavericks Nate Hinton (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Dallas Mavericks Nate Hinton (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

The Dallas Mavericks headed into their third game in the Las Vegas Summer League short-handed. Josh Green was ruled out for the event after winning a bronze medal in the Olympics with Australia. The Mavericks had two starters injured in their loss to the Utah Jazz on Wednesday night. Both players remained out leaving the Mavs with just nine healthy players.

The Denver Nuggets were winless coming into Saturday afternoon’s game versus the Mavericks. They decided to rest Bol Bol and were relying heavily on 2021 first-round pick Nah’Shon Hyland to carry their team.

The Mavs held a double-digit advantage after three quarters, but Hyland and the Nuggets stormed back to grab the win in overtime. Dallas is still winless in Las Vegas, but Eugene Omoruyi and Nate Hinton played well on Aug. 14. Here is a closer look at the team’s performance.

More. Meet the Mavs 2021 summer league roster

Dallas Mavericks lose heartbreak to Nuggets in summer league

The Mavs jumped out to an early lead and held a seven-point advantage after the opening quarter. Feron Hunt had seven points behind a three-for-three start coming off the bench. Dallas was spreading the ball around and competing on both ends of the floor, despite having just nine healthy players. They were getting out in transition and making plays. See new two-way Maverick Eugene Omoruyi get the steal and find Hunt for the easy bucket below.

Omoruyi got up for his own impressive dunk in the second quarter.

The 24-year-old had six points in the second period, but the Nuggets cut the Mavs lead to two at the half. It was a back-and-forth quarter as both teams struggled to take care of the ball. There were a combined 22 first-half turnovers and 21 personal fouls. Both teams were hoping to clean up the sloppy play after the break.

The Mavericks outscored the Nuggets 23-14 in the third to push their lead to 11 heading into the fourth. Carlik Jones got rolling with eight points and Nate Hinton finally found his stride in Vegas to help Dallas increase their advantage.

The Nuggets stormed back in the fourth quarter to force overtime. Denver had 30 points in the final ten minutes as the Mavericks faltered down the stretch. Bones Hyland had 24 points at the end of regulation and keyed the comeback for the Nuggets.

Denver dominated the two-minute overtime period to grab the 89-85 win. It was the second straight heartbreaking loss for Dallas.

Nate Hinton had his best game of the 2021 summer league on Saturday afternoon. He finished with 19 points, seven rebounds, four assists, and two steals in 34 minutes of action. Hinton was eight of 15 from the field and hit two 3-pointers. The 22-year-old showed off his shooting improvements against the Nuggets.

Eugene Omoruyi had 20 points, two rebounds, two assists, one steal, and two blocks. He has been Dallas’s best defender in Las Vegas and continues to showcase his versatility. The Maverick believe in his potential and are excited about their newest two-way contract player.

The Dallas Mavericks are back in action on Sunday afternoon against the Sacramento Kings. The Kings have won their first three contests in Las Vegas and will be a difficult test for the Mavs. Can Dallas slow down lottery selection Davion Mitchell? Be sure to tune in and find out.

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