Kyrie Irving Reveals Key Motivation in Crucial Road Win Against Clippers

Mavericks capitalize on Clippers' off-night to level series.

by Nouman Rasool
Kyrie Irving Reveals Key Motivation in Crucial Road Win Against Clippers
© Harry How/Getty Images

Guided by the formidable duo of Kyrie Irving and Luka Doncic, the Dallas Mavericks clawed back to reclaim home-court advantage by toppling the LA Clippers in a pivotal match. This contest marked the return of Kawhi Leonard, who appeared somewhat out of sync after a lengthy absence due to knee issues.

Speaking postgame, Kyrie Irving highlighted the critical nature of the Mavericks' victory. "We know the percentages. Going down 0-2 in any series makes a comeback tough," Irving explained. "Our focus was on securing tonight's win to return home with the advantage of playing before our Dallas crowd." The synergy between Doncic and Irving was palpable throughout the game.

Doncic notched 32 points, leading the charge, while Irving added 23 points, helping Dallas secure a tight 96-93 win on Tuesday night, thus leveling the series. Kawhi Leonard, playing his first game since March 31, managed 15 points and seven rebounds in 35 minutes.

Despite his efforts and time on the court, Leonard's lack of game-time sharpness was evident, as he struggled to make a significant impact early on.

Clippers' Shooting Woes

The Clippers, led by Paul George and James Harden—who scored 22 points each—suffered due to poor shooting.

Their overall field goal percentage was a mere 36.8%, and from beyond the arc, they converted only 8 of 30 attempts. Leonard seemed to regain some rhythm post-halftime and became more active defensively, but it wasn’t enough to turn the tide completely in the Clippers' favor.

As the game progressed, the Clippers attempted a comeback in the third quarter, reducing their deficit and even briefly taking the lead after Harden capitalized on a technical foul against Doncic. However, the Mavericks responded emphatically with a 14-0 run, highlighted by a series of 3-pointers that shifted the momentum firmly back in their favor.

This victory not only marks a strategic recovery by the Mavericks after their initial loss but also sets the stage for an exhilarating series as they head back to Dallas. The Mavericks' ability to leverage their star players' performances and capitalize on the Clippers' shooting woes was instrumental in evening out the series, setting up a thrilling continuation of the playoffs.

Kyrie Irving Clippers Mavericks