Dallas – Mavericks Superstar Luca Tansik He felt he had knocked down his teammates by accurately describing the second half of the Atom 2 defeat to the Phoenix Sun as a “terrible” defensive attempt. His backcourt partner Jalan Brunson The 0-2 Phoenix trip requires only one word to summarize his performance: “Terrible.”
They both arrived at the American Airlines Center on Friday night, confirming that Game 3 was different. Both won, spoiling the Suns star Chris Paul‘S 37th birthday and the Western Conference semifinals Mavs beat Dallas 103-94 for their first win.
Brunson has 28 points – six more than he added in the first two games of the series – and put Mavs comfortably ahead when Danzi was sitting in trouble in the second half. Dansik finished with 26 points, 13 rebounds, nine assists and two steals.
“Everyone was at the party,” said Dallas coach Jason Kid, who expressed his displeasure after the game when there was not much support for Danzi. “They helped on both fronts. Luca performed well on the defensive. He also attended. It puts us in a different position when it happens.”
Maws guards significantly outscore Paul and Suns’ all-star backcourt Devin Booker, Who added more turnovers (seven) than he did on field goals (11). According to ESPN statistics and information research, dozens of turnovers were the highest in any sport as they were teammates in both seasons.
This was in stark contrast to the dominance of the Suns guards during the opening two games of the Phoenix series.
Booker, who scored 18 points in the 6-of-13 shootout, said, “It’s not like us.” “You can credit them. They came out and played hard, played with pessimism. But that’s it. We got a series.”
Paul made seven turnovers, a disgrace in his playoff career, while averaging 12 points and four assists. By comparison, Paul scored 14 points in the fourth quarter of the Game 2 route, constantly hunting for Tonsik’s switches.
“They came out and did what they had to do,” Paul said. “We’ll be back on Sunday.”
Forward Reggie Bullock And Dorian Finney-Smith, Paul and Booker’s primary defenders, respectively, led Dallas’ effort to that corner of the ground. The Mavs also made some definite changes, such as the frequent addition of Booker to the double team and the mixing of certain zones. But Tonsik’s most advanced attempt came just hours after Kid publicly invited him to “participate” in the defense, which was a key feature.
“First or second possession, he was diving on the ground,” Finney-Smith said. “When you see the best player doing it, it sets the mood.”
Dansik underestimated his Cam2 defensive criticism, whether it was from his coach or others, as motivating. He blamed himself that night for Dallas’ defensive problems.
Danzik, who averaged 35.3 points, 10.0 rebounds and 8.0 assists in the series, said, “I know I have to do better.” I think I have made great strides in defense this year. The second half (Game 2) was terrible for me and I knew I had to go back to my team and play better in defense. “
Brunson was a breakout star in the first round, averaging 27.8 points per game in a six-game win over the Utah Jazz, but a factor in both games played in Phoenix. In both games he had an early misalignment, which was part of the reason he could not find his rhythm and shot only 32.1% off the ground.
“I wanted him to be aggressive,” Kid said. “We talked before the game – just be yourself. I thought this was the first time he’s been aggressive. He’s not waiting. He’s not researching.”
Brunson was on the offensive despite missing his first three shots, finishing with 10 points in 4-of-7 shooting in the first quarter. He had another 10-point quarter in the third quarter, which was important because Tonzik was out in the final five minutes, 14 seconds due to a misplaced problem.
“Underneath me I found myself playing a little too much, reaching points quickly and making quick decisions,” Brunson said. “The results came because I was aggressive. My teammates kept giving me the confidence to play, and I kept doing it. … Tonight I found a way to recover, but I could not be satisfied with it.”
The win broke the Mavs’ 11-game losing streak against the Suns in November 2019, a drought that Dallas-based players and coaches deliberately avoided discussing during the series.
“We’m going to believe it to the end,” Danzik said. “Someone has to win four, you have to believe, whether you’re down or you’ve up.”