Luka Doncic pinpoints keys for Mavericks to bounce back vs Celtics as NBA Finals shift to Dallas

Published June 11, 2024, 2:00 PMPao Ambat

Even Luka Doncic’s best game of this Finals series against the Boston Celtics wasn’t enough to stop the Dallas Mavericks from falling to a 0-2 hole.

Luka Doncic became the first Dallas Maverick to record a triple-double in the NBA Finals.

Luka Doncic registered his first-ever NBA Finals triple-double, while five Dallas players scored in double digits, and the Mavericks tallied 21 assists in Game 2 after dishing out just nine in Game 1. 

All that went to naught. 

“At the end [of[ the day, we have to make shots to win the game,” Doncic said after the Mavericks 105-98 Game 2 loss over the Celtics that put them into a 0-2 hole in the NBA Finals. 


Doncic finished with 32 points, including 26 alone in the opening half, alongside 11 rebounds, 11 assists, and four steals. 

The Slovenian superstar was listed as questionable prior to the game due to various injuries but managed to record his 10th playoff career triple-double. 


 “I always want to play. So all day we did a lot of things to get ready for the game.”


 Dallas could have returned home for Games 3 and 4 of the NBA Finals and tied the title series at a game apiece. They could have put the heavily favored Celtics into what would have been their most precarious spot of the season.


 Instead, they’re down 0-2—and now the Mavericks have little to no room for error if they want this title series to get a little bit longer.


 “Every game we lose is a missed opportunity for us.” 


“I think my turnovers and my missed free throws cost us the game. So I've got to do way better in those two categories,” Doncic admitted.

In the biggest moments, Boston found a way, and Dallas did not.

That all said, it’s not over. Comebacks from a 0-2 hole in the NBA Finals aren’t unprecedented.

Three seasons ago, the Milwaukee Bucks overcame a 0-2 Finals deficit to stun the Phoenix Suns. In 2016, the Cleveland Cavaliers pulled off perhaps the greatest Finals comeback of all time, rallying from a 0-2 and 1-3 deficit to beat the 73-9 Golden State Warriors in seven games.

Dallas was even on the wrong side of history in 2006, leading 2-0 in the championship series before Dwyane Wade and Miami won the next four games for their first championship.

Game 3 of the NBA Finals will be held on Thursday, June 13, at 8:30 a.m. It will be aired LIVE on One Sports, NBA TV Philippines, RPTV, and the Pilipinas Live app.