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NBA roundup: Doncic leads Mavs over Wolves in Game 1 of West final



Minneapolis — Luka Doncic had 15 of his 33 points in the fourth quarter to lift the Dallas Mavericks to a 108-105 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves in Game 1 of the Western Conference finals on Wednesday night.

Kyrie Irving scored 24 of his 30 in the first half for the Mavericks, who trailed 102-98 after a 3-pointer by Anthony Edwards with 3:37 left before an 8-0 run the Wolves didn’t stop until a tip-in with 10.5 seconds to go.

Jaden McDaniels had his third straight 20-plus-point game with 24 points for the Wolves, but Edwards – who earned his first All-NBA selection prior to the game, on the second team – was stifled for 19 points in a team effort from the Mavericks. Karl-Anthony Towns needed a late burst to get to 16 points and finished 6 for 20 from the floor.

The star power in this series is strong, and for the first night at least the Mavericks got what they needed from their leading duo while the Wolves largely struggled to run the offense around theirs.

Dallas had a 62-38 advantage in points in the paint to offset a 6-for-25 shooting performance from deep.

Towns came to life with a long jumper, a lob to Rudy Gobert for a slam and a 3-pointer on a 2-minute burst to give the Wolves the lead back with 4:39 to go on the way to a 10-0 run that Doncic ended with a 3-pointer. P.J. Washington, who had 13 points and seven rebounds, hit from deep to put the Mavericks back in front with 1:56 to go.

Towns thought he tied the game with a putback dunk on the next possession, but that was waved off for basket interference.

Edwards, who went scoreless in the third quarter, added 11 rebounds and eight assists.

Neither team led by more than nine. Minnesota hosts Game 2 on Friday night.

Doncic was relatively quiet until he scored seven straight points over 63 seconds early in the fourth quarter, and the Mavericks stretched that to a 13-0 run for a 97-89 lead that Edwards finally ended with a 3-pointer after another helter-skelter possession.

The Wolves had two days off after dethroning defending champion Denver with a Game 7 comeback from a 20-point deficit to win the second-round series, and the transition was sharp from the Nuggets and NBA MVP Nikola Jokic’s deliberate and powerful style to the pick-and-roll-heavy Mavericks.

Irving’s stunning burst on the break and on the drive presented a unique challenge the Wolves and their league-leading defense didn’t face in the last round, when they held the Nuggets to an average of 85 points over their four wins. The Mavericks frequently sprung loose off screens for wide-open dunks.

LeBron named to All-NBA team again

New York — LeBron James is now the youngest – and the oldest – player to make an All-NBA team. And Dallas’ Luka Doncic and Oklahoma City’s Shai Gilgeous-Alexander are in position to make around $1 million per game a few years from now.

Denver’s Nikola Jokic and Gilgeous-Alexander were the only unanimous first-team selections on this season’s All-NBA team, which was revealed by the league on Wednesday night. They were joined on the first team by Doncic, Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo and Boston’s Jayson Tatum.

On the second team: New York’s Jalen Brunson, Minnesota’s Anthony Edwards, Phoenix’s Kevin Durant, the Los Angeles Clippers’ Kawhi Leonard and James’ Los Angeles Lakers teammate, Anthony Davis.

The third team had James, Golden State’s Stephen Curry, Sacramento’s Domantas Sabonis, Indiana’s Tyrese Haliburton and Phoenix’s Devin Booker.

The NBA changed the rules starting with this season and All-NBA voting is now positionless – as opposed to having two guards, two forwards and one center on each of the teams, a formula that had been in place since the 1950s. Players also had to appear in a minimum number of games, in most cases, to be eligible for award consideration from the panel of 99 broadcasters and writers who served as the voting panel.

For James, who was the youngest player to make All-NBA when he was voted onto the team for the 2004-05 season, another selection only added to his list of accomplishments.

The 20 All-NBA overall picks extended his record, a total that’s now five more than Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. His 20 consecutive selections is obviously another record, and he’s the first player to be age 39 or older during what became an All-NBA regular season.

Abdul-Jabbar and Duncan were both just a few days from turning 39 when the regular seasons ended in what became their final All-NBA campaigns, Abdul-Jabbar’s being 1985-86 and Duncan’s being 2014-15. James – the NBA’s career scoring leader – played in 71 games this season, the last 42 of those coming after he turned 39.

And for Doncic and Gilgeous-Alexander, the All-NBA nods mean they are poised for supermax extensions that can be signed in 2025, both of which would set records.

Doncic can sign a five-year deal worth about $347 million, starting at nearly $60 million in 2026-27 and ending at about $79 million in 2030-31. Gilgeous-Alexander will be eligible to sign a four-year extension worth about $294 million. His would start in 2027-28 at around $65 million – and the final year, 2030-31, would see him earning just over $81 million, or nearly $1 million per game. It would be the first time an NBA player’s annual salary has topped $80 million.

Also seeing major financial boosts from their All-NBA selections were Edwards and Haliburton, both of whom agreed to extensions last summer that were to be worth about $205 million – and now will be worth about $245 million over the next five seasons.

Durant made All-NBA for the 11th time, tying for the 12th-most in NBA history.

Celtics, Pacers will try to overcome bad habits

There was a dominant refrain ringing in Jayson Tatum’s head following the Celtics’ comeback 133-128 overtime win over the Pacers to open the Eastern Conference finals.

“Don’t relax,” he said.

In each of the previous two rounds, Boston opened its series with Miami and Cleveland with lopsided victories, only to then lose Game 2.

The Pacers have experienced the opposite, dropping Game 1 in Rounds 1 and 2 and then having to regroup to overtake Milwaukee and New York.

Tyrese Haliburton’s takeaway from Indiana’s latest Game 1 setback against the East’s top seed? Be disappointed. But don’t fret.

“We know we can play with these guys,” Haliburton said. “There’s a lot of people out there saying we don’t belong here. We don’t really care. We know we belong.”

What’s clear is that how both teams adjust for Game 2 on Thursday night will set the tone for the balance of this series.

Recent history aside, the similarities between the Celtics and Pacers were on display throughout Game 1.

Both teams thrived offensively this season and did so again, combining for 261 points Tuesday night. It was the highest scoring game of this postseason and the most in a conference finals game since Boston and Detroit totaled 264 in Game 4 of the 1987 East finals.

What was also on display were both teams’ vulnerabilities. Indiana exploited Boston’s weakened interior defense throughout, racking up 56 points in the paint. But the Celtics ultimately prevailed, benefiting from a myriad of mistakes by a young Pacers team short on playoff experience.

Haliburton had two key turnovers to help the Celtics rebound from a five-point deficit in the final two minutes of regulation. First, he dribbled off his foot as he was bringing the ball up the floor with less than 30 seconds remaining in a three-point game. He also fumbled the ball out of bounds with just over a minute to play in OT.

The two miscues were part of 22 turnovers on the night for a Pacers team that came in averaging fewer than 12 per game in these playoffs.

It’s part of the growing pains Indiana coach Rick Carlisle expected his youth-heavy team would have to endure during this playoff run.

“You have to go through it to really experience what it’s all about,” Carlisle said. “We try to help prepare them for those experiences. But there’s nothing like going through it.”

Knicks’ Brunson has surgery

Jalen Brunson has had surgery to repair the broken left hand he sustained while the New York Knicks were losing Game 7 of the Eastern Conference semifinals.

The Knicks also said Wednesday that reserve Bojan Bogdanovic had surgery on his left wrist. No details were provided about either procedure except that both players would be evaluated again in six to eight weeks.

Brunson was hurt in the third quarter of the Indiana Pacers’ 130-109 victory over the Knicks on Sunday. He finished with 17 points, his lowest of a postseason in which he scored 40 or more five times, becoming just the fourth player to reach that mark in four consecutive postseason games.

He finished with 32.4 points per game in the playoffs, second only to the 33 that Joel Embiid averaged when the Knicks beat the Philadelphia 76ers in six games in the first round.

Bogdanovic was hurt in Game 4 of that series. He had scored 13 off the bench in Game 1 and became one of the Knicks’ many missing players as the season finished.

Julius Randle had season-ending surgery after dislocating his shoulder in January and Mitchell Robinson had surgery on his ankle during the playoffs.

Eastern Conference

Third round

Boston vs. Indiana

(Celtics lead 1-0)

▶ Game 1: Boston 133-128 (OT)

▶ Game 2: Thursday @ Boston, 8

▶ Game 3: Saturday @ Indiana, 8:30

▶ Game 4: Monday @ Indiana, 8

▶ Game 5: Wednesday, May 29 @ Boston, TBA

▶ Game 6: Friday, May 31 @ Indiana, TBA

▶ Game 7: Sunday, June 2 @ Boston, TBA

Western Conference

Third round

Dallas vs. Minnesota

(Dallas leads 1-0)

▶ Game 1: Dallas 108-105

▶ Game 2: Friday @ Minnesota, 8:30

▶ Game 3: Sunday @ Dallas, 8

▶ Game 4: Tuesday, May 28 @ Dallas, 8:30

▶ Game 5: Thursday, May 30 @ Minnesota, 8:30

▶ Game 6: Saturday, June 1 @ Dallas, TBA

▶ Game 7: Monday, June 3 @ Minnesota, TBA

Eastern Conference

Second round

Indiana vs. New York

(Indiana wins 4-3)

▶ Game 1: New York 121-117

▶ Game 2: New York 130-121

▶ Game 3: Indiana 116-101

▶ Game 4: Indiana 121-89

▶ Game 5: New York 121-91

▶ Game 6: Indiana 116-103

▶ Game 7: Indiana 130-109

Boston vs. Cleveland

(Celtics win 4-1)

▶ Game 1: Boston 120-95

▶ Game 2: Cleveland 118-94

▶ Game 3: Boston 106-93

▶ Game 4: Boston 109-102

▶ Game 5: Boston 113-98

Western Conference

Denver vs. Minnesota

(Minnesota wins 4-3)

▶ Game 1: Minnesota 106-99

▶ Game 2: Minnesota 106-90

▶ Game 3: Denver 117-90

▶ Game 4: Denver 115-107

▶ Game 5: Denver 112-97

▶ Game 6: Minnesota 115-70

▶ Game 7: Minnesota 98-90

Oklahoma City vs. Dallas

(Dallas wins 4-3)

▶ Game 1: Oklahoma City 117-95

▶ Game 2: Dallas 119-110

▶ Game 3: Dallas 105-101

▶ Game 4: Oklahoma City 100-96

▶ Game 5: Dallas 104-92

▶ Game 6: Oklahoma City 100-96

▶ Game 7: Dallas 117-116

Eastern Conference

First round

Milwaukee vs. Indiana

(Indiana wins 4-2)

▶ Game 1: Milwaukee 109-94

▶ Game 2: Indiana 125-108

▶ Game 3: Indiana 121-118 (OT)

▶ Game 4: Indiana 126-113

▶ Game 5: Milwaukee 115-92

▶ Game 6: Indiana 120-98

Boston vs. Miami

(Celtics win 4-1)

▶ Game 1: Boston 114, Miami 94

▶ Game 2: Miami 111, Boston 101

▶ Game 3: Boston 104, Miami 84

▶ Game 4: Boston 102, Miami 88

▶ Game 5: Boston 118-84

Cleveland vs. Orlando

(Cavaliers win 4-3)

▶ Game 1: Cleveland 97, Orlando 83

▶ Game 2: Cleveland 96, Orlando 86

▶ Game 3: Orlando 121, Cleveland 83

▶ Game 4: Orlando 112, Cleveland 89

▶ Game 5: Cleveland 104, Orlando 103

▶ Game 6: Orlando 103, Cleveland 96

▶ Game 7: Cleveland 106-94

New York vs. Philadelphia

(Knicks win 4-2)

▶ Game 1: New York 111-104

▶ Game 2: New York 104-101

▶ Game 3: Philadelphia 125-114

▶ Game 4: New York 97-92

▶ Game 5: Philadelphia 112-106

▶ Game 6: New York 118-115

Western Conference

L.A. Clippers vs. Dallas

(Mavericks win 4-2)

▶ Game 1: L.A. Clippers 109-97

▶ Game 2: Dallas 96-93

▶ Game 3: Dallas 101-90

▶ Game 4: L.A. Clippers 116-111

▶ Game 5: Dallas 123-93

▶ Game 6: Dallas 114, L.A. Clippers 101

▶ Game 7: Sunday @ L.A. Clippers, TBA

Denver vs. L.A. Lakers

(Nuggets win 4-1)

▶ Game 1: Denver 114-103

▶ Game 2: Denver 101-99

▶ Game 3: Denver 112-105

▶ Game 4: L.A. Lakers 119-108

▶ Game 5: Denver 108-106

Oklahoma City vs. New Orleans

(Thunder wins 4-0)

▶ Game 1: Oklahoma City 94-92

▶ Game 2: Oklahoma City 124-92

▶ Game 3: Oklahoma City 106-85

▶ Game 4: Oklahomas City 97-89

Minnesota vs. Phoenix

(Timberwolves win 4-0)

▶ Game 1: Minnesota 120-95

▶ Game 2: Minnesota 105-93

▶ Game 3: Minnesota 126-109

▶ Game 4: Minnesota 122-116

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