SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Christian Wood had 27 points and 13 rebounds and the Dallas Mavericks overcame a series of blunders at the end regulation to beat the San Antonio Spurs 137-128 in overtime Wednesday night without injured All-Stars Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving.
“We made two mistakes late in the game,” Dallas coach Jason Kidd said. “It wasn’t where we were trying to make the mistakes. It just happens. As much as we look at them as numbers, we’re human. San Antonio took advantage of them.”
The Mavericks’ Maxi Kleber threw an inbounds pass out of bounds on a full-length heave with 1.8 seconds remaining in regulation. Keldon Johnson, who missed a pair of free throws with 1.8 seconds, tied it 121 on an alley-oop dunk off an inbounds pass from Malaki Branham.
“We kind of let it slip away in overtime, but the basketball gods were definitely on our side at the end of regulation,” Branham said.
The Mavericks went on a 13-0 run early in overtime to seal the victory.
Wood had five points in overtime as Dallas fights to remain in the top 10 in the Western Conference. The Mavericks remained in ninth place, a half-game ahead of the Los Angeles Lakers and a game ahead of the Utah Jazz and New Orleans Pelicans.
“We knew that we needed to win, and we came out and gave it our all in overtime,” Mavericks guard Josh Green said.
Dwight Powell and Jaden Hardy had 22 points each and Green added 21 points for Dallas, which snapped a three-game skid.
Johnson had 27 points to lead the short-handed Spurs.
Playing the second game of a back-to-back, the Spurs were without starters Devin Vassell Jeremy Sochan and Zach Collins along with Keita Bates-Diop and Charles Bassey. But as they did in setting a franchise record with 22 3-pointers in a rousing victory over Orlando on Tuesday night, San Antonio responded with a balanced scoring effort.
“They did a great job,” San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich said. “A lot of guys got minutes. Combinations were a little strange probably, but their competitiveness and execution here and there were great. Really proud of them. They deserve to enjoy their evening.”
Branham had 20 points, Romeo Langford had 17 points and four others scored in double figures.
Mavericks: Dallas has won six straight against San Antonio. The Mavericks’ previous loss to the Spurs was April 11, 2021, in San Antonio. … Doncic and Irving were both in attendance, sitting at the end of the Mavericks bench. … Jaden Hardy has scored 20 points in all three of his career starts for the Mavericks. In a back-to-back set against Memphis, Hardy had 22 points on March 11 and 28 points on March 13.
Spurs: San Antonio confirmed that Bassey suffered a non-displace fracture in his left patella. The injury occurred at the close of the first quarter of Tuesday’s victory over Orlando. Bassey will miss the remainder of the season. …. San Antonio is 2-2 during its six-game homestand. … Of the 13 games the Spurs have remaining, 10 are against a team in the playoffs or play-in tournament if the season ended today. … Johnson made his 200th career start in 219 career games with the Spurs. Only Tim Duncan, David Robinson, Tony Parker, Willie Anderson and Sean Elliott have 200 starts in fewer games for the Spurs.
Popovich is well-known for exclusively limiting his basketball viewing to his own team during the season.
That even extends to not watching any prospective players.
Popovich admitted he never saw Sochan play until he walked into the Spurs’ practice facility last year.
So, even with the Spurs in position for their highest draft pick since selecting Tim Duncan No. 1 in 1997, Popovich is letting the team’s scouts and front office watch those games.
“I think I saw one clip of one of the guys that will probably be in the lottery,” Popovich said. “Two-minute clip or whatever. I’m not sure why I did it, but it was there somewhere.”
A reporter joked Popovich probably saw the clip while scrolling Instagram.
“I’m on Instagram a lot, but I’m on Twitter so much I don’t have time for Instagram,” Pop dryly retorted. “I’ve got to keep my followers happy.”
Mavericks: At Los Angeles Lakers on Friday night.
Spurs: Host Memphis on Friday night.
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