Can the Dallas Mavericks even up the series in Game 2?

    Last night, Game 1 of the 2024 NBA Finals took place in Boston. The Celtics hosted the Mavericks in a highly-anticipated series. Boston led the league in three-pointers made in 2023-24. They’ve kept that same identity in the 2024 postseason. In Game 1, the Celtics went 16-42 from beyond the arc and won the game by double digits. 

    There was a lot that went wrong for the Mavericks in Game 1 and they certainly need to make adjustments. Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving could have impacted the game more. Additionally, Dallas’ role players failed to show up in big moments. What changes can Jason Kidd and his coaching staff make for Game 2 on Sunday?

    Can the Mavericks shake off a rough start to the Finals and respond in Game 2?

    In Game 1 of the 2024 NBA Finals, it was clear which team was more ready for the moment. This interaction of the Celtics has been in this moment before.  They used that to their advantage and were able to play loose in Game 1. Boston has the decisive 107-89 victory. On the flip side, it was not the strongest of performances from the Mavericks as a whole. Several factors played into the Game 1 loss and adjustments need to be made. Otherwise, the Mavs could find themselves down 2-0.

    First off, the Mavericks had just nine assists the entire game. Luka Doncic had just one. That’s highly unlike the All-NBA PG who’s averaging (8.6) assists per game this postseason. The Celtics did a fantastic job of preventing Doncic from exploring the Celtics as a passer. He still had 30 points and 10 rebounds, however, it was not nearly enough to stop the Celtics. The Mavs cut the lead to eight points in the second half but Boston went on a quick run and the lead ballooned back to double digits.

    Along with Luka having an off night, his backcourt counterpart Kyrie Irving struggled. He was 6-19 from the field, 0-5 from deep, for 18 points. Dallas needs Kyrie to play much better on offense if they want to even the series in Game 2. Additionally, the Mavs’ role players did not step up. Only three players scored in double-digits last night. Three were starters and Jaden Hardy had 13 points off the bench. The Mavericks have won every Game 2 they’ve played this postseason. Will they keep the streak alive this Sunday?

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