The Japan Times
Mavs, Sixers get even in semifinals
The Dallas Mavericks hit 20 three-pointers and again neutralized Phoenix point guard Chris Paul to beat the top-seeded Suns 111101 on Sunday and knot their Western Conference semifinal series at two games each.
Star guard Luka Doncic scored 26 points and Dorian Finney-Smith added 24 for Dallas, which has won two games at home to even the best-of-seven series after dropping the first two games in Phoenix.
The Suns, who finished the regular season with the best record in the league, will try to regain the advantage when they host Game 5 on Tuesday. The series is guaranteed to shift back to Dallas for Game 6 on Thursday.
Devin Booker led the Suns with 35 points. Jae Crowder added 15 and Deandre Ayton scored 14.
But the Mavericks bench outscored the Phoenix reserves 36-26.
“This team was amazing,” said Doncic, who was outstanding but received little support in the Mavs’ two series-opening defeats. “Everybody that gets to the court leaves everything out there. If we play hard and we get stops, we’re a dangerous team.”
The Philadelphia 76ers also won a second straight game at home and pulled even with the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference semifinals. Former NBA MVP James Harden scored 31 points to lead six Philadelphia players in double figures in a 116-108 victory.
Center Joel Embiid, who missed the first two games with a concussion and facial fracture, scored 24 points, his presence again making things tougher for Miami defensively.
“The organization on offense, it helps a lot with him on the floor,” said Philadelphia’s Danny Green, who made three 3-pointers on the way to 11 points. “Without him we look a little discombobulated.”
Embiid carried the Sixers early, scoring 15 points in the first quarter. Harden, who didn’t score in the opening period, took over with 13 points in the second.