NBA playoffs: Stephen Curry and Warriors power past Mavericks for 3-0 series lead
Stephen Curry scored 31 points, Andrew Wiggins added 27 and posterized Luka Doncic on a dunk, and the Golden State Warriors beat the Dallas Mavericks 109-100 on Sunday night for a 3-0 lead in the Western Conference finals.
Klay Thompson scored 19 points and made a pair of big fourth-quarter three-pointers as the Warriors moved to within a victory of a return to the NBA Finals three years after the end of a run of five consecutive trips that yielded three championships.
Golden State, which swept Portland in its most recent West finals in 2019 before Toronto won the title, goes for the sweep in Game 4 on Tuesday in Dallas. No team has rallied from 3-0 down to win an NBA playoff series.
Doncic scored 40 points and beat the first-quarter buzzer with a 32-footer that got the crowd going with the Mavericks again at home trailing 2-0, as they did against top-seeded Phoenix before winning the West semifinal series in seven games.
But that shimmy-inducing bucket was a blip on an otherwise rough night from three-point range for the Mavericks, who missed their first seven tries and finished 13 for 45.
Reggie Bullock and Maxi Kleber, two long-range specialists for Dallas, missed all 12 of their threes combined and were 0 for 15 overall. Both went scoreless, offsetting Spencer Dinwiddie’s 26 points off the bench. Jalen Brunson scored 20 points.
Wiggins’ dunk over Doncic originally was ruled an offensive foul midway through the fourth quarter. The Warriors challenged, and the ruling was Wiggins’ elbow to Doncic was incidental contact, giving Golden State a 93-83 lead.
Somehow the Lakers need to make this happen — lure 76ers coach Doc Rivers away from Philadelphia to lead the Los Angeles club back to relevance.
About a minute later, Wiggins, who had 11 rebounds, moved quickly down the right baseline for a follow dunk on a miss by Curry as the Warriors extended their NBA record with a 26th consecutive series in which they won at least one road game.
One of Dinwiddie’s three-pointers got Dallas to within five points with 1:15 remaining in the game, but Jordan Poole answered with one from the left wing just inside the final minute.
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