Dirk blasts Lakers again, sends Mavericks to 2-0 series leadPosted by Inside Hoops
The AP reports:
Dirk Nowitzki scored 24 points, Shawn Marion added 14 and the Dallas Mavericks stunned the erratic Los Angeles Lakers 93-81 in Game 2 on Wednesday night, taking a 2-0 second-round lead over the two-time defending champions with consecutive road wins.
Jason Kidd scored 10 points for the Mavericks, who pushed the Lakers halfway to playoff elimination with Nowitzki’s stellar shooting, another steady defensive performance, and a decisive 9-0 fourth-quarter rally.
Kobe Bryant scored 23 points for the Lakers, who hadn’t lost the first two games of a playoff series since the 2008 NBA finals—also the last series they lost. Only three NBA teams have come back to win a best-of-seven series after losing the first two at home, where the Lakers sent them off with boos and jeers…
Andrew Bynum had 18 points and 13 rebounds for the Lakers, who haven’t been able to control the paint with their usual vehemence against the Mavericks’ three 7-footers. Pau Gasol had 13 points and 10 rebounds, but appeared tentative for long stretches while struggling to contain Nowitzki…
Gasol’s struggles have been the Lakers’ biggest mystery of the postseason. The Spanish All-Star 7-footer barely contributed to Los Angeles’ tough six-game victory over New Orleans in the first round, and he came back from a quiet opener against Dallas with another mediocre game, getting booed several times by the home crowd.
InsideHoops.com editor says: This is wild. The Lakers look like a slower, more plodding version of their championship selves, and there’s every reason for the Mavericks to truly believe in themselves in this series. One game at a time, though… Jose Juan Barea provided a big spark that doesn’t show on the stat-sheet. He penetrated almost at will for a stretch, causing havok that helped the Mavs keep the game under control… Kobe isn’t making teammates better. He took 20 shots for 23 points, did have five steals, but dished just one assist… Bynum put up 18 with 13 rebounds and continues to make a difference… The Lakers shot just 41.0 percent, but the big shocker was that they hit just 2-of-20 from three-point range… It’s hard to give up on the champs just yet. I’m thinking maybe they steal Game 3 in Dallas. The problem is, there’s no reason right now to really predict that. The momentum lies with the Mavs.
Live fan discussion of this game took place in this forum topic.