Luka Doncic And P.J. Washington Led The Mavs To A Game 2 Win Over The Thunder

The Dallas Mavericks have stolen homecourt advantage away from the Oklahoma City Thunder in their Western Conference Semifinal matchup. After falling on OKC’s floor in Game 1, the Mavs bounced back by getting incredibly hot from behind the three-point line to pick up a 119-110 win and tie things up in their series at one game each.

The Mavericks caught fire to start the game, as the team raced out to a 13-2 lead that took some of the air out of the always raucous crowd in Oklahoma City. While the Thunder were able to battle back and get the lead down to one, Dallas went on yet another run — this time, it was eight unanswered points to give themselves a little cushion, with Luka Doncic having a particularly devastating period by scoring 16 points on 4-for-5 shooting from three.

Still, between 10 points from Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and a buzzer-beater after snatching a full-court pass out of midair to end the quarter by Chet Holmgren, Oklahoma City was able to keep things close, and Dallas went into the second with a 36-32 lead.

The Maverick offense continued to hum during the first part of the second quarter thanks to Doncic and P.J. Washington, both of whom were scorching hot on that end of the floor throughout the first half. Doncic was locked in as a scorer and a passer, while Washington got into a groove from behind the three-point line and managed to get his playoff career-high in the first half.

It helped Dallas lead by as many as 14 points, but the Thunder were able to chip away, going on a 15-4 run powered by Gilgeous-Alexander that put the Mavs right back within their reach.

A Josh Green made three with nine seconds left gave Dallas a 68-62 lead as the teams went into the locker room for halftime. Washington led all scorers with 19 points, while Doncic was not far behind with 18 points, seven rebounds, and five assists. As a team, the Mavericks were on excellent from behind the three-point line, knocking down 12 of their 24 attempts. Gilgeous-Alexander put up an 18-point, 4-rebound, 3-assist half for the Thunder, while Jalen Williams scored 14.

Oklahoma City came right out of the break and threw their best punch. The team immediately went on a 10-3 run out of halftime, with a bucket by Aaron Wiggins giving them their first lead of the night. And after a free throw by Kyrie Irving tied things back up, Lu Dort ignited the crowd by drilling a corner three.

The two teams traded buckets, but despite a spell with Doncic sitting on the bench, the Mavs were able to go on an 18-4 that featured 10 straight points by Tim Hardaway Jr. to open up a bit of breathing room. The lead got up to as many as 14 points in the quarter, and after a brief spurt by Oklahoma City at the end of the third, Dallas took a 99-89 lead into the game’s final 12 minutes.

Right at the start of the fourth, the Thunder looked poised to go on a run. The team scored the first six points of the frame, capped off by an incredible putback dunk by Williams that made the home crowd lose its mind.

The Mavs had a response, as the team settled things down and scored the next five points. For much of the remainder of the quarter, Dallas did a great job of keeping Oklahoma City at arm’s length, whether it was because of the brilliance of Doncic or the Thunder going cold at the worst possible time. Every push that OKC tried to make had an immediate response, with Dallas showing off some veteran savvy against the upstart 1-seed in the Western Conference.

Doncic and Washington led the way for the Mavs, with both scoring 29 points — the former added 10 rebounds, seven assists, and three steals, while the latter had 11 rebounds, four assists, and two steals. Three other players reached double-figure scoring, led by 17 off the bench by Hardaway. Gilgeous-Alexander handled most of the heavy lifting for the Thunder, going for 33 points, 12 rebounds, and eight assists, with Williams pitching in 20 points of his own.

The two teams will now head to Dallas, where they’ll play on short rest. Game 3 takes place on Saturday afternoon at 3:30 p.m. EST on ESPN.