Final: Mavs 109, Bucks 105
Box Score | Highlights
Behind the Box Score
The Mavs shot 60.0 percent in the first quarter, scoring 1.476 points per possession in the frame. For reference, Dallas hit four more shots in the first quarter alone than the club did in the first half on Friday. The Mavs have stressed the importance of starts lately, and they delivered on their goal today.
The Mavericks have now won nine straight games on Sunday this season. One of the season’s strangest stats.
Harrison Barnes became just the fifth Maverick ever to score at least 30 points on 13 shots or fewer. Dirk Nowitzki was the last to do it, in 2014.
Harrison Barnes was unstoppable in the fourth quarter, most promisingly attempting 10 free throws in the final frame alone. He’s been working to get to the line more often all season, but his work hasn’t always paid off in some games. Tonight, though, it did. One play in particular stood out. Barnes caught a pass open at the top of the arc but, instead of taking the 3, drove the basket, drew contact, and went to the line for two shots. If Barnes can continue to get to the line more often, even if it’s only six times in a game, his efficiency and effectiveness will only increase. Tonight he scored 31 points on 13 shots.
J.J. Barea did that thing again where he has an awesome second half. The backup point guard scored seven points in the first half, which is good, but he played out of his mind particularly in the fourth quarter, leading a Mavs run to put them up 89-82, with him doing virtually all the scoring and assisting during that stretch, including back-to-back connections with Nerlens Noel for lob dunks. He’s been playing excellent basketball all season, and that continued tonight.
Nico Brussino got some significant playing time tonight, and he played well. The rookie scored seven points and grabbed three rebounds in 14 minutes. He always seems to make the right play, and more importantly he always plays within himself and within the system. He never seems overwhelmed by the moment, which speaks volumes of him as a young player, especially because he can’t necessarily communicate with his coaches and teammates very well due to the language barrier.
Dirk Nowitzki had a strong bounce-back performance after his off shooting night Friday in Memphis, scoring 17 points on 7-of-11 shooting. The German was hot early, hitting a couple 3s in the first to help Dallas open up a lead in the opening frame. But he would leave the game for good in the third quarter and was ruled out with a sore right Achilles, per Mavs PR. No word on his availability for future contests, but stay tuned for updates. Meanwhile, Seth Curry also missed the game with a left shoulder injury, but Rick Carlisle said he hopes the guard can play Tuesday night against Sacramento. Yogi Ferrell got the start at point in his absence.
The Mavs (32-44) will play the Sacramento Kings (40-34) on Tuesday at the at 9:30 p.m. Central.