The Dallas Mavericks were up by three in the final seconds of regulation on Dec. 15, but they let the Los Angeles Lakers steal the victory. They had a chance to go up by five, but Jalen Brunson missed a shot. The Mavs also forced a miss with under ten seconds left but failed to grab a rebound and Wayne Ellington drilled a 3-pointer to send the contest to overtime.
Dallas was seconds away from their signature win without superstar Luka Doncic. The 22-year-old missed his third straight game with an ankle injury, and he will not travel on the team’s upcoming road trip. The Mavericks' offensive struggles continued without Doncic, and LeBron James and the Lakers took advantage in the extra session.
Things were back and forth in overtime, but Austin Reaves hit the game-winner for the 107-104 Lakers win. Many of the usual problems showed up for the Mavs on Wednesday night. Here is a look at the issues that caused the loss to the Lakers, plus an update on Luka Doncic.
Mavericks lose heartbreaker to LeBron and Lakers without Luka Doncic
The Mavs barely cracked 100 points in an overtime game on Dec. 15. They shot 39.2 percent on their 98 field goal attempts, and Dallas made just 12 of their 44 3-point attempts. The Mavericks have struggled from the field this season and their shooting woes continued at the American Airlines Center. They are a squad relying on jumpers that do not make many at this point.
Their lack of playmaking and shot creation was on full display too. Jalen Brunson had 25 points and nine assists, but no other player had more than three dimes on Wednesday night. Kristaps Porzingis produced 23 points, 12 rebounds, and two blocks, and his shot creation has improved this season. The Mavs need to get Luka back and upgrade their roster before the trade deadline.
Tim MacMahon captured some video of Doncic working out on the court pregame. The 22-year-old superstar is moving without a limp, but the team wants to make sure he is healthy before bringing him back. The Mavericks will be looking to bounce back on Sunday in Minnesota in another contest without Doncic.
The Dallas Mavericks suffered a heartbreaking loss to snap a two-game winning streak on Dec. 15. They had multiple chances to put the game away and came up just short. Hopefully, Luka Doncic makes a speedy recovery and the Mavs can figure out their shot-making woes. Stay tuned to The Smoking Cuban for all the latest on the Mavericks this season.