Devin Booker goes after Luka Doncic late as Suns defeat Dallas Mavericks

Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic, Devin Booker
Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic, Devin Booker / Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Mavericks lost a heartbreaker to the Phoenix Suns 130-126 on Sunday afternoon in the first half of the ABC nationally televised doubleheader. It was a true heavyweight fight, and the two teams traded punches for the entire 48 minutes. Kevin Durant buried the game-winner with 11.7 seconds left to give him 35 points on March 5.

It was not Luka Doncic’s best game. The 23-year-old was just eight of 23 from the field, and he made just one of his nine 3-point tries. Still, number 77 finished with 34 points, nine rebounds, and four assists in 35 minutes of action. Luka was just a touch off on Sunday afternoon, including committing five turnovers, but he has truly reached unstoppable status. He missed the game-tying floater in the final seconds.

It was truly a superstar battle on Sunday afternoon. All four stepped up with monster performances at the American Airlines Center. The Mavs had zero answers for Kevin Durant and Devin Booker as each had 30 points in the first three quarters. Here is a closer look at the game, the late actions by Booker, and why the Suns could be a matchup Dallas wants in the playoffs.

Devin Booker goes after Luka Doncic late as Suns defeat Dallas Mavericks

Fans were hoping to see Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant matchup on Sunday afternoon, and the Mavericks guard took advantage of his former teammate guarding him here for an easy layup.

Irving finished 30 points, four rebounds, and seven assists in 36 minutes on Sunday afternoon. He made ten of his 19 field goals and put on an impressive show, but the Mavericks came up just short against the Suns.

Luka posted up in the final seconds with a chance to tie the game, but he missed an easy shot. After the miss, LD fouled Kevin Durant to extend the game. Then, Devin Booker approached during the stoppage and had words for Doncic. Luka did not back down as the rivalry heated up. Both players earned technical fouls, and it added a bit of extra spice to an already heated rivalry.

This was a Mavericks game on March 5. They must outscore teams after the Kyrie Irving trade. Dallas is going to have an elite offense and not much defense for the remainder of the season. The Mavs need to play hard and compete, but they do not have enough defense, especially when Maxi Kleber sits as he did on Sunday afternoon. Can they put up monster-scoring numbers in the postseason? It is a question worth asking as the playoffs approach.

The Mavs would be happy to face Phoenix in the playoffs this season. Dallas used a massive 3-point advantage to knock off the top-seeded Suns last year, and they made three more on Sunday afternoon. Phoenix got hot late to close that gap, but Dallas could expand it in the playoffs as Ish Wainwright is unlikely to make four of his five 3-point attempts every game. Facing KD and Booker in the playoffs is never easy, but those extra points from beyond the arc could be the difference in a tight series for the second straight year.

The Dallas Mavericks wrap up a six-game homestand on Tuesday night against the Utah Jazz. The Jazz are currently ninth in the West and fighting to stay in the play-in tournament. It will not be an easy game, and the Mavs will need Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving to dominate if they want to win. Do not miss it.

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