June 24, 2024

Westside People

Complete News World

How the Celtics took over the NBA Finals with a Game 2 win over the Mavericks

How the Celtics took over the NBA Finals with a Game 2 win over the Mavericks

BOSTON – Luka Doncic is hurting. Kyrie Irving is struggling and Jason Kidd’s mind game hasn’t worked for the Celtics. They’re all ingredients for Dallas’ 2-0 lead in the NBA Finals.

Boston took strong control of this series Sunday night with a 105-98 win behind 26 points from Jrue Holiday, a nearly triple-double from Jayson Tatum and another balanced effort from Jaylen Brown.

Dončić, who was playing with a bruised chest as well as nagging knee and ankle injuries, was again dominant in the loss, this time with a 32-point triple-double. But he only scored 9 points after halftime, and if any of the injuries affect him, well, Dallas can’t afford that if the Mavs don’t get more help from another player.

“I think my turnovers and missed free throws cost us the game,” said Doncic, who said he was “fine” physically. He suffered the injury during the first game, but said he didn’t feel any pain until the next day.

“I actually was [questionable]”But I always want to play,” Doncic said. “We did a lot of things all day to prepare.”

Irving is shooting 13 of 37 in this series after having 16 points on 7 of 18 shooting in Game 2. He’s 0 of 8 on 3s in two games. Irving’s team has never beaten Boston since his departure from the Celtics in 2019, and has lost 12 consecutive games.

“I will bear the brunt of the responsibility,” Irving said. “The first two games were not the best for me, especially since (Luca) scored more than 25 points, got rebounds, got assists, did the intangibles, and for me, I always felt responsible for resting the other players there.” , also.

“It’s on all of us,” Irving continued. “I’m sure if you heard what everyone had to say, they would say they could do something better.

See also  PAC12 explores expansion options as Big Ten tells Oregon, Washington that it is now on standby

“But I think the message now is to pull our forces together.”

Go deeper

Hollinger: If the Mavs’ stars can’t beat the Celtics 1-on-1, this series will be over

Game 3 takes place at 8:30 PM ET on Wednesday at the American Airlines Center in Dallas.

After practice Saturday, Mavs coach Jason Kidd, in an apparent attempt to sow division among his opponent, said Brown, not the more decorated Tatum, is the Celtics’ best player. It’s not the kind of debate that gets settled in one game anyway, but Tatum overcame a poor shooting night to score 18 points, nine rebounds and 12 assists.

Brown added 21 points, seven assists and three steals in the kind of two-way outing that Kidd cited as a reason he said what he said about Brown about Tatum. Late in the fourth quarter with Boston clinging to a 5-point lead, Brown (along with Derrick White) defended a potential field goal from Dallas’ P.J. Washington, and then Brown converted a layup at the other end for a 105-98 lead with 29 seconds remaining.

“I’m really tired of hearing about one guy, this guy or that guy or everyone trying to be anything other than Celtic basketball,” Boston coach Joe Mazzola said. “Everyone who stepped on this field today won on both ends of the field and that is the most important thing.”

Holiday was the Celtics’ best player on the scoreboard Sunday. The only hero on the list, he made 11 of 14 shots and contributed 11 rebounds. His perimeter defense was a factor in Boston’s successful defensive gameplan of putting Dončić and Irving on islands, cutting off the rest of Dallas’ offense by stifling ball movement.

See also  USC, major winners Alabama, major losers

“I’m a utility guy. I’ll do anything. I’m here to win,” said Holiday, one of Boston’s key additions last season. “I feel like they brought me here to win and I’m going to do my best to do that. But at the end of the day, this is (Tatum and Brown’s) team, and I know my team is probably going to be like their team, but again, I feel like I’ve talked about this before, the pressure that they put on themselves to execute and be great is a little different than the pressure that they put on themselves to execute and be great. I practice it.

“They are stars and I am here to support them.”

White finished with 18 points. Late in the fourth quarter he chased Washington from all over the field to get in position to create a pivotal block.

“That was sick,” Mazzola said.

Kidd had a different opinion. “It looked like a foul, but it didn’t count, so it wasn’t a foul,” Kidd said.

If there’s one downside to the Celtics’ night, it’s that Kristaps Porzinis may have aggravated a right calf strain that caused him to miss 10 playoff games. Porziņģis finished with 12 points on Sunday, but appeared to limp in the fourth quarter and struggled to get up and down the court before being ejected for the rest of the game.

“Zero (concern),” Mazzola said of Borzinis. “it is good.”

Porzinis said he will need to be evaluated Monday before the Celtics travel to Dallas for Game 3, but he looked as if he intends to play.

“I’m going to die there,” Porzinis said.

Dallas went into halftime trailing 54-51 behind 23 points from Doncic. The Celtics maintained control in the third quarter, leading by as many as 13 points, and Payton Pritchard pulled away for an NBA Finals banner and made a 3 as time expired to send Boston into the fourth quarter with an 83-74 advantage.

See also  New Orleans Saints stumble with home defeat to Baltimore Ravens | NFL

“I think that was the way the game was played, and it couldn’t go unnoticed,” Mazzola said of Pritchard’s shot. “You see players all over the league ignoring that shot, or pretending like they don’t want to take it so their numbers don’t get messed up. He takes pride in making that (shot), and that’s winning basketball.”

Dončić added 11 boards and 11 assists, shooting 12 of 21 from the field with four steals. Washington contributed 17 points and seven rebounds for the Mavericks, who were 2 of 13 on 3s in the second half. For the game, all Dallas players not named “Dončić” shot 2-of-17 from the three-point line.

The Mavericks also fought their way out of the win at the free throw line, where they missed 8 of 24 foul shots. The Celtics converted 19 of 20 at the line to help offset the poor shooting they showed from 3-point range (10 of 39).

“(Doncic) put us in a position, he was really good tonight,” Kidd said. “Unfortunately, we couldn’t get over the hump. I thought our defense was really good. We just have to take care of the ball. There are too many turnovers that give them points, and then also the ability to score the ball, and now, we have to find someone to join Luka.” And in this scoring category.

Required reading

(Photo: Maddy Meyer/Getty Images)