NBA roundup: Mavs beat the buzzer and the Nets, Embiid keeps Sixers on track
New York, New York - Spencer Dinwiddie delivered the buzzer-beating dagger to the hearts of the Brooklyn Nets as the Dallas Mavericks squeaked a 113-111 win on the road.
He hit the most important shot of the night for the second game running (having done so against the Celtics on Sunday) as defenders rushed to trap Dončić with just seconds remaining as the Mavericks trailed 110-111.
The game only required Dinwiddie's heroics after a string of late-game shot-making saw the lead seesaw.
After a Dirk Nowitzki-esque mid-range fadeaway from Dončić to grab a 110-108 lead, Durant took matters into his own hands.
Facing a defense that was game-planned to get the ball out of Durant's hands by sending two defenders to him whenever he had the ball, the seven-foot star was unselfish throughout the game as he moved the ball to the open outlet pass and racked up 10 assists to go with his 23 points.
But with everything on the line, Durant was determined to live and die by his own shot-making, pulling up and draining a ridiculous long-three with two defenders closing in on him to nab a one-point lead, before Dindwiddie answered.
Dončić was the only thing keeping the Mavericks competitive at times, finishing with 37 points, nine rebounds, and nine assists.
Around the league
The Philadelphia 76ers recovered from a shocking third-quarter collapse to come back and beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 118-114. An explosive first half saw the 76ers take a 72-59 lead into half-time, before getting outscored 13-31 in the third quarter, down five heading into the last. Luckily for Philadelphia, MVP favorite Joel Embiid was too much to handle, finishing with 35 points on 13-of-19 shooting to go with 17 rebounds.
Newly-acquired partner-in-crime James Harden was also terrific, scoring 21 points and dishing out 11 assists, while he and Embiid combined to go 18-of-22 from the free-throw line.
Meanwhile, another strong contender for MVP, Nikola Jokić, continued to build his case with 29 points, eight assists and 13 rebounds in the Denver Nuggets' 127-109 win against the Washington Wizards.
Going around the league, Phoenix Suns' All-Star Devin Booker dropped 36 points on 15-of-24 shooting, while Mikal Bridges chipped in with 26 in a gritty 129-112 win against the Houston Rockets on the second night of a road back-to-back.
The Los Angeles Lakers fell 11 games below .500 after the Minnesota Timberwolves jumped out to a commanding 51-26 lead halfway through the second quarter, going on to win 124-104. After scoring a career-high 60 points last week, Karl-Anthony Towns continued on his hot streak to score 30 with 13-of-13 from the free-throw line.
Steph Curry was forced to leave the Golden State Warriors' 110-88 loss at the hands of the Boston Celtics as this season's two best defenses went head-to-head. Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown scored 26 points each for the Celtics, while Jordan Poole was the lone bright spot for the Warriors with 29.
Finally, the Chicago Bulls suffered disappointment on the road as the Utah Jazz won out 110-125, while the Toronto Raptors sneaked a 103-100 victory over the LA Clippers.
Cover photo: IMAGO / ZUMA Wire