DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) — The Mavericks have struggled in recent years to handle the front-court size and dynamic guard play of the Los Angeles Lakers.
On Tuesday night in Dallas, things were inside-out, as the Lakers (2-3) had no answer for Dallas inside on the boards — or outside of the arc.
The Mavericks (3-1) controlled the boards, out-rebounding the Lakers 50-35 and shot 13-for-27 (48.1%) from beyond the arc en route to a 123-104 win.
“It’s about everybody in this room just doing the right things for us to be successful,” said Jose Calderon after game. “When everybody feels that way, it makes it a lot easier.”
On the perimeter, it was Monta Ellis leading the way, scoring a game-high 30-points on just 14 shots, while dishing out nine assists.
Calderon added five assists and four three-pointers, two during a decisive third quarter run that extended the Dallas lead to 30. Jae Crowder was a perfect 4-for-4 from three-point range in the fourth quarter alone, scoring a career high 18 points.
And point guard Gal Mekel, who logged a season- and NBA career-high 26 minutes, chipped in with nine points and six assists.
Dallas was equally as dominant inside, teaming up to limit All-Star Paul Gasol to a season-low 10 points and eight rebounds.
“Yeah, it was fun out there tonight,” said forward DeJuan Blair, who grabbed a team-high eight rebounds and added five steals. “The Lakers, knowing what they do, trying to get the ball to Paul [Gasol] and I’m so low that I can get him — so it was pretty fun.”
Eight different Mavericks collected at least four rebounds. Shawn Marion added seven to go along with his 11 points. But his biggest contributions may have come on the defensive end. Marion started the game on point guard Steve Nash — a tactic head coach Rick Carlisle has employed before.
“It seemed to get us going, and putting him on the point guard has gotten us going the past couple of nights,” said Carlisle. “Shawn’s versatility is a really fantastic feature of his game. His length around the ball is a good thing.”
Nash was limited to five points on 2-of-8 shooting. Shooting guard Nick Young led the Lakers with 21 points off the bench, while no starter scored more than Gasol’s 10.
The Lakers were without star Kobe Bryant, who continues to recover from off-season surgery to repair his Achilles’ tendon. The Mavericks seized the opportunity to break a five-game home losing streak to the Lakers.
How’d they do it? With a dominating performance — inside and out.
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