- Eric Martinez
Double overtime thriller leads to Mavericks outlasting Lakers, 119-115
The Los Angeles Lakers have been playing with intensity as of late. Prior to Thursday night’s game, the Lakers last faced the Mavericks on Christmas Day and learned a lot from that matchup. One thing they knew is that Luka Doncic affects the game in more ways than just scoring. Mavericks started the game aggressive by holding a large lead at the end of the first quarter and a 59 to 48 lead heading into halftime. A stellar performance by Lakers’ LeBron James (24 points and 18 rebounds) and Russell Westbrook (28 points and 7 rebounds) in the second half sparked a comeback by getting multiple players in a groove shooting. The Lakers ended the game shooting 39.3% from the field, but 24.4% from three-point range and 64 points in the paint. However, it just wasn’t enough to top a streaky and talented Mavericks scoring arsenal.
Doncic not only scored the game tying three, to tie the game at the end of regulation, but he also did the same thing in the first overtime. His 35 points, 14 rebounds, and 13 assists, led the way for a thriller in Los Angeles and registers his 56th career triple double. Contributing for the Mavs was a surprising dominant game from Christian Wood with 24 points and 14 rebounds. Luka exhausted his entire energy and gave everything he had to get this win for Dallas. “I’m more tired now. I think I was good in the game with energy. Now I need to rest.” Mavericks now improve their road record to 8-13 and have sole possession of 4th place in the Western Conference.
LA lost two games in a row after a red-hot start to the calendar year, 2023. LA is bottom of the Pacific division and slide down to 13th place in the Western Conference. It is apparent that frustration is setting in for the Lakers about their key players being injured. Austin Reaves, Lonnie Walker and Anthony Davis sat out of this game with injuries they are still battling. “We gave ourselves a chance to win. We just couldn’t come through late in the game,” LeBron James emphasized. Russ Westbrook had few words post game, “He made a tough shot, simple as that. You just move on. Find a way to execute better.” Lakers host Philadelphia 76ers on Sunday that will be a tall task containing the 5th place team in the Eastern Conference. Dallas Mavericks continues the road trip heading up to Portland on Saturday night to play the struggling Trail Blazers.