SAN ANTONIO (AP) — DeMar DeRozan picked himself off the court after missing a potential game-winning shot and then lifted the San Antonio Spurs, too.
DeRozan had 34 points and nine assists and San Antonio withstood a 31-point outburst by Dallas rookie Luka Doncic in a 113-108 overtime victory over the Mavericks on Monday night.
“He’s a really good player and he loves those moments,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said of DeRozan. “He’s not afraid of failure. You know, Michael (Jordan) didn’t make every shot at the end of the game, but there are very, very few people who want to be in that position all the time and (DeRozan’s) one of those people who loves it. It’s good to have that.”
LaMarcus Aldridge added 20 points and Rudy Gay had 15 points and 11 rebounds as San Antonio won its second overtime game.
Popovich said Aldridge and Gay were his closers last season, but DeRozan has given the Spurs another option, and they needed it against Doncic.
Dallas’ 6-foot-7 wing was 11 for 18 from the field in scoring a season high.
“He’s a very good player,” Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said. “He certainly doesn’t look surprised that this is happening.”
DeRozan and Doncic battled in the final minutes of regulation and into overtime in a game that included 10 lead changes and 12 ties.
DeRozan scored 18 points in the fourth quarter and overtime, while Doncic had 10 points in the same span.
DeRozan made two free throws to give the Spurs a 102-101 lead with 39.1 seconds left in regulation. Doncic missed a driving layup against Aldridge, and DeRozan missed a jumper in the lane. Dennis Smith Jr. was fouled by DeRozan with 1.6 seconds remaining. The Mavericks’ point guard made the first free throw, tying the game at 102-all, and missed the second. DeRozan remained sprawled face-first on the court for a few seconds after missing a jumper inside the 3-point line as regulation expired.
“I was mad at myself that I missed,” DeRozan said. “But like I said, if I got the opportunity again, I wasn’t going to miss a big shot later in the game, and I didn’t.”
It was one of the few times DeRozan failed to come through on either offense or defense for the Spurs. DeRozan, who was acquired in the offseason from Toronto for Kawhi Leonard, was 12 for 21 from the field and had six rebounds and three steals.
With about seven minutes remaining in regulation, DeRozan stole the ball from Wes Matthews, sprinted down court and backed up Matthews before hitting a turnaround, fadeaway jumper from 12 feet for an 89-83 lead.
“I think we have a bunch of guys that are competitive and have the same goal, that’s to win,” Aldridge said. “I feel like that’s not something hard to ask. I feel like every guy is trying to do what they can to make wins.”
Smith finished with 22 points for Dallas.
(© Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)