PJ Washington delivers for Dallas anew, Mavericks take 2-1 series lead over OKC

Published May 12, 2024, 10:30 AMKiko Demigillo

PJ Washington finished with 27 points in Dallas' crucial Game 3 win over OKC. | Photo (c) Dallas Mavericks

The Dallas Mavericks seized control of their Western Conference semifinals series against the top-seeded Oklahoma City Thunder on Sunday (PHL) with a 105-101 victory in Game 3 at the American Airlines Center.

This win marked the Mavs' second-straight victory, handing the Thunder their first two postseason losses and granting Dallas a 2-1 series lead.

P.J. Washington once again showcased his offensive prowess for Dallas, contributing a team-high 27 points built on five 3-pointers.

Despite initial concerns about knee and ankle injuries, Luka Doncic managed to tally 22 points and 15 rebounds, while Kyrie Irving emerged in the second half with 22 points, five rebounds, and seven assists.

Although the Thunder launched a strong surge to begin the third quarter, securing a 10-point advantage, they couldn't stave off the determined Mavericks.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander led OKC with 31 points, while Jalen Williams added 16 points despite an ankle injury.

However, no other Thunder player surpassed 13 points, and OKC faltered in rebounding, trailing 41-48 in that department.

The Mavericks took command of the game as they entered the fourth quarter with a 24-9 scoring run. 

OKC tried everything to force a comeback, even resorting to intentionally fouling Dereck Lively II, a 50.6 percent shooter from the line.

But Lively’s performance at the free-throw line turned out to be pivotal, going 8/12 from the stripe to help push Dallas ahead.

The Mavericks will look to take a commanding 3-1 lead in Game 4 which is set on Tuesday (PHL time).