The Portland Trailblazers shocked the Dallas Mavericks, fighting back from a 23-point deficit to beat the Mavericks, 84-82 earlier last week to even the series at two before Dallas came fighting back.
After the embarrassing game four loss, the Mavericks bounced back to a 93-82 win over the Portland Trailblazers to take a 3-2 lead in round one Monday.
Tyson Chandler was the player of the game, contributing 14 points and 20 rebounds. This came after Chandler had a talk with coach Rick Carlisle where he suggested his desire to become more involved in rebounding. Chandler’s 13 offensive rebounds are the most ever by a Mavericks player in the playoffs and the most in the NBA since Shaquille O’Neal’s 14 in 1995.
“He’s got to be active for us, and he knows that. Hyping the crowd, being vocal in the huddle. That’s what he’s been doing for us all year long. If he keeps playing like that, with energy, we’ll be OK,” Nowitzki said about Chandler.
After playing zone defense and being aggressive on the floor, Dallas led by double digits going into the fourth quarter. The Mavericks’ defense forced Portland to miss 10 straight shots. The Mavericks finished off the win by getting to the free throw line and winning on rebounds, 49-37.
Nowitzki finished with 25 points, with 11 of those coming in the third quarter, when the Mavericks went on a 15-5 run. Jason Terry added 20, Shawn Marion contributed 14 and Jason Kidd had 14 assists.
The Mavericks wrapped up round one with a 103-96 game six win over the Portland Trailblazers Thursday.
Dallas had a 17-point lead going into the fourth quarter, but memories of game four resurfaced when Portland cut the lead to one point. Although Portland cut the lead, the Mavericks never lost the lead.
The Mavericks didn’t make it to the charity stripe until late in the fourth quarter, where free throws helped seal off the win.
The Mavericks took the win on the shoulders of Dirk Nowitzki and Jason Terry. Nowitzki led with 33 points and 11 rebounds and Terry added 22 points and eight assists. Nowitzki surpassed Terry as Mr. fourth quarter on the night, adding 13 points in the final minutes.
Next up, the Mavericks take on the Los Angeles Lakers. This is the first time Dallas has made it to the second round since 2006, when the team made a run to the NBA Finals. Games one and two are at the Staples Center. Game one is set to tip-off at 9:30 p.m. Monday and will be broadcast on TNT and NBATV. Game two is also in LA, with tip set at 9:30 p.m. Wednesday and will also be broadcast on TNT.
Games three and four will be in Dallas Friday and Sunday. Game times are TBA.