Doncic, Luka, clutched his nose. LeBron James seized his face with a hand. Tim Hardaway Jr. raised both of his hands. And Troy Brown Jr., appropriately, spent the last second of regulation on the ground.
The Lakers and Mavericks battled into double overtime on Thursday night in a rugged game devoid of some anticipated calls, and although Dallas continued making huge plays, the Lakers were unable to ever seal the deal.
LeBron James attempted to make the huge plays for the Lakers that Doncic was making for the Mavericks, but both of his three-point attempts rimmed out and one bounced off the rim.
The Lakers were defeated 119–115, unable to overcome the burden of so many missed field goals and free throws.
The Lakers have now dropped two consecutive games after winning their previous five.
After it seemed Hardaway made touch with his shooting hand on Brown’s possible game-winning three-point effort at the end of regulation, the shot fell far short. Then, near the conclusion of the first overtime, James pleaded for a foul call when Christian Wood blocked his reversal at the basket.
Hardaway “gets a piece of the ball on the closeout and does make some high-five contact, which is permissible and that play was appropriately no called,” official Josh Tiven told a pool reporter.
The NBA’s top scorer, Doncic, made clutch three-pointers to tie the score between the dramatic last minutes of the game and the first overtime. Finally, those plays—as much as his playmaking—made the difference.
Darvin Ham, the Lakers’ coach, stated, “He did what Luka does.” “He hit the target. I’m furious with myself. In such situation, I need to train a bit more effectively. They ought to have blitzed him.
James scored 24, Russell Westbrook had 28, and three other Lakers ended in double digits, with Wenyen Gabriel leading the way with 14.
With 35 points, 14 rebounds, and 13 assists, Doncic led the Mavericks. In the two overtimes, Spencer Dinwiddie scored eight of his 17 points, while Wood had a double-double and five blocks.
Made a difficult shot, Westbrook said. “Easy as that.”
James missed every shot he attempted over the two overtime periods as the Lakers hit just 5 of 17.
Dallas carved a weak defence up for 36 points in the first quarter on Thursday, giving the Lakers the appearance that they desperately needed a roster transfusion. This was reminiscent of Dallas’ 51-point third quarter on Christmas Day, which defined the opening 12 minutes.
However, as a result of Westbrook’s aggressiveness at Doncic, the Lakers’ defence tightened.
The Lakers gradually reduced their 19-point deficit, eventually pulling ahead in the fourth quarter before Dallas swiftly reclaimed a slim lead.
But in the last two minutes, the Lakers took a two-point lead thanks to three-pointers from Westbrook and Gabriel, as well as a layup by Dennis Schroder.
Later in the fourth, with the Lakers leading by one, Hardaway missed a crucial three-point attempt, which allowed the Lakers to tie the game at the free-throw line.
The audience muttered after a review pulled Schroder off the line and placed Westbrook there. Westbrook nonetheless nailed two free throws to give the Lakers a three-point lead, just enough to ensure Doncic couldn’t defeat them at the conclusion of the fourth as James tried to quiet the crowd.
However, the Lakers were unable to leave themselves much room for error due to their poor shot-making, as James missed all seven of his three-point attempts and his team shot only 10 for 40.
And there was just too much of it on Thursday.
The Lakers are still looking for assistance in free agency while also considering their trade possibilities.
Cousins, who joined the Lakers in 2019, had a knee ailment that prevented him from taking the court for the team. He has since represented the Rockets, Clippers, Bucks (with Ham), and Nuggets.
Since January 9, 2021, Leonard has not participated in an NBA game. Leonard was penalised $50,000 in March 2021 for uttering an antisemitic slur while participating in a livestream broadcast while playing a video game. He apologised and received a week’s suspension.
At the time, Leonard said on Instagram, “My ignorance of its history and how hurtful it is to the Jewish people is certainly not an excuse and I was simply wrong. Later, he was released after being moved to Oklahoma City.
Leonard has had shoulder and ankle surgery since his previous game.
The exercises weren’t “confirmed or denied” by Ham.
He remarked before the game on Thursday, “At the end of the day, we’re continuously searching for what’s out there and just being mindful.” Nothing else exists. That does not guarantee that they will be included to our roster.
It would be reckless of us to ignore what is outside, according to Ham.
It will help to have Austin Reaves, Lonnie Walker IV, and Patrick Beverley back after missing the game on Thursday due to sickness. And once Anthony Davis is able to return, the greatest change will, of course, occur. The amount of assistance they need up to that point will sort of fluctuate from moment to moment.