DALLAS, TX–It took double overtime and an 8-0 rally with 1:20 to go, but the Dallas Mavericks defeated the Sacramento Kings 117-116 tonight at the American Airlines Center on a last second buzzer beater by point guard Deron Williams.
“I definitely dreamed about playing for the Mavericks when I was growing up,” Williams said when asked about his game winning shot. “It’s definitely a dream come true.”
After his playing status was considered a game-time decision following a tweaked hamstring in the Mavs loss to the Miami Heat on Saturday, Williams finished the game with 25 points, while playing a team-high (tied) 43 minutes.
The Mavericks have now won 22 consecutive regular-season home games against the Kings.
In what was supposed to be the return of Rajon Rondo to the AAC for the first time since he quit on his team in Game 2 of the 2014-2015 NBA playoffs, Rondo mysteriously and ironically came up with back spasms, causing him to miss his first game of the season due to injury.
While Mavs fans would have liked to have seen Rondo in action to let them know just how they felt about his decision to quit last season, perhaps it ended up being a blessing in disguise for the struggling Mavs.
The Mavs (20-15) ended their two-game losing streak, getting their first win of the 2016, to remain at the fifth seed in the Western Conference. It was the first loss of 2016 for the Kings (14-21), after defeating the Phoenix Suns and Oklahoma City Thunder to begin the year.
The Mavs used a heavy dose of JaVale McGee, who made the most of his opportunity in extended minutes, finishing the game with his first double-double since April 15, 2013 (13 points, 11 rebounds). Dirk Nowitzki chipped in with 23 points and Wesley Matthews finished with 23 points.
Taking a 49-43 lead at halftime, the Mavs won the first half not by playing better than the Kings, but by simply not playing worse. Both team struggled offensively, with the Mavs and Kings both shooting only 43 percent.
By the end of the third quarter, Dallas had extended their lead to 8 points, but couldn’t find a way to put the Kings away for good. A Williams basket with 2.1 seconds left in regulation put the Mavs up by 2, but the Kings answered right back with a buzzer beating layup by DeMarcus Cousins to send the game into overtime. He finished the night with a monstrous 35 points and 17 rebounds.
Down 4 points with 2 minutes left to play in the second overtime, the Mavs went to Zaza Pachulia on a post move on the block, but he lost control in what looked to be an obvious foul on the way up to the basket. The Kings then sprinted down the court and Rudy Gay hit a three to put the Kings up 7 with just 1:20 left. Following a timeout, the Mavs went on an 8-0 run that included a Williams layup and a three from Dirk Nowitzki. Then with just 2.3 seconds left, following a Sacramento turnover, Williams nailed a game winning three-pointer at the buzzer to send the Mavs to victory.
— NBA (@NBA) January 6, 2016
Up Next: The Mavs will now travel to New Orleans to face to Pelicans (11-22) on the second night of a back-to-back. Tipoff is set for 7:00 p.m. CST.
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