Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks advanced to the Conference Finals after a historic Game 7 vs. the Phoenix Suns. The Slovenian was then enthusiastic about the performance of his team.
The Mavs dominated from the start against the best team of the regular season and ended up winning 123:90 in a foreign arena. Doncic himself put up 35 points, 10 rebounds and 4 assists in just 30 minutes, he controlled the game from the start and was overjoyed afterwards.
“You can’t wipe this smile off my face,” said the 23-year-old. “I’m just really happy. Honestly, I think we deserve it. We’ve played hard all series. Maybe we didn’t look like ourselves in some games, but we made a statement here in Game 7. We everyone believed in it.”
Dallas had trailed 0-2 in the series and had not won a playoff series prior to this postseason since 2011. Nevertheless, the Mavericks fought their way into this duel and increasingly took control on the defensive against Phoenix. This was also key in Game 7, when the Suns had just 27 points in the first half.
Mavericks: Extra payday for Spencer Dinwiddie
Doncic also had this yield on the credit side at the break. “He’s the kind of player who wants to land the knockout punch,” Spencer Dinwiddie, who scored 30 points himself, said of Doncic. “For that he has my respect. He’s never afraid of the moment.”
This postseason has already paid off for Dinwiddie. Like Marc Stein (Substack) reported that getting into the conference finals triggered a clause in his contract that guaranteed him a bonus of $571,427.
“It’s not about me. It was the whole team today,” Doncic said again. “Today was just incredible. I’ve never seen a performance like that in a Game 7. I can’t remember anyone delivering like that in an away game so I’m really proud of our performance today.”
Jason Kidd: “Nobody gave us a chance”
In fact, there was only one Game 7 in NBA history that went even more clearly to the away team. According to ESPN Stats & Info The Mavs blowout was only topped by a 39-point win for the Philadelphia Warriors over the St. Louis Bombers in 1948.
Dallas will now face the Golden State Warriors in the Conference Finals and will start as an underdog in this series as well. No problem for head coach Jason Kidd, who couldn’t do much with this pigeonhole thinking anyway. “We believe in ourselves, it showed today, but we have to do the whole journey,” said Kidd.
“I hate it when we put a stamp on something or a limit. We don’t know how far it’s going to go. That’s why we have to play the games. That’s why we were ready for this game today. Nobody gave us a chance. A lot of people predicted it was going to be a blowout. Well, they were right – but they didn’t have us on the winning side.”
The series against Golden State will begin on Thursday night.
NBA Playoffs: Mavs vs. Suns – The series at a glance
|1||May 3rd||Phoenix Suns||Dallas Mavericks||121:114|
|2||5th of May||Phoenix Suns||Dallas Mavericks||129:109|
|3||May 7||Dallas Mavericks||Phoenix Suns||103:94|
|4||8 May||Dallas Mavericks||Phoenix Suns||111:101|
|5||11. May||Phoenix Suns||Dallas Mavericks||110:80|
|6||13. May||Dallas Mavericks||Phoenix Suns||113:86|
|7||16. May||Phoenix Suns||Dallas Mavericks||90:123|