Luka Doncic helps Mavericks even series vs. Clippers

Luka Doncic had 32 points and nine assists, and Kyrie Irving added 23 points as the Dallas Mavericks got the best of the Los Angeles Clippers 96-93 in Game 2 on Tuesday to even their first-round playoff series.

P.J. Washington scored 18 points and Derrick Jones Jr. had 10 as the Mavericks recovered from a double-digit defeat in Game 1 on Sunday when they trailed by as many as 29 points and scored just 30 in the first half.

Doncic and Irving combined to go 19 of 44 (43.2 percent) in the game after they struggled in the decisive first half of Game 1 when they combined to shoot 5 of 19 (26.3 percent). The Mavericks shot 42.1 percent in Game 2 after shooting 30.3 percent in Game 1.

The series moves to Dallas for Game 3 on Friday.

James Harden and Paul George each scored 22 points as the Clippers were unable to take advantage of Kawhi Leonard’s return. Leonard, who had not played since March 31 because of right knee inflammation, scored 15 points in 35 minutes.

Ivica Zubac finished with 13 points and 12 rebounds for the Clippers, who led by as many as six points early in the fourth quarter before the Mavericks rallied.

After the Clippers dominated the first quarter in Game 1, the Mavericks took a 23-19 lead after one period of Game 2. Dallas passed the 30-point mark with 7:55 remaining in the second quarter after scoring that many in the first half of the opener.

The Mavericks led 45-41 at halftime. The Clippers asserted themselves in the third quarter when they outscored Dallas 25-20 to take a 66-65 lead into the final period. A 7-2 run to open the fourth quarter gave Los Angeles a 73-67 lead with 9:32 remaining.

The Mavericks answered with a 14-0 run to take an 81-73 lead with 5:18 remaining after a shot inside by Irving. The Mavericks opened the advantage to 90-81 with 1:26 remaining after a 3-pointer from Doncic, and Dallas held on from there.

The Mavericks played the final 2 1/2 quarters without guard Tim Hardaway Jr. because of a sprained right ankle.

The Clippers tied their second-lowest point output from the regular season, when they scored under 100 points just five times.


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