Yet again, the Dallas Mavericks held a lead in the final minute of the game. They led 97-96 before the Thunder hit four free throws.
Jason Terry hit a layup when down three, James Harden followed with two more free throws and the Mavs ended up with a shot to tie it with the shot clock off.
Terry missed two long 3-pointers at the buzzer and Oklahoma City held home court as they won Game 2, 102-99.
The game started out unusually as Kendrick Perkins scored seven of the Thunder’s first nine points. It looked like they were going to blowout the Mavericks during the second quarter when they took a 16-point lead.
Dallas brought the lead down to seven by halftime and took a lead just over four minutes into the third. From then on out it was a dogfight.
The refs called a very tight game; there were 54 total fouls, incredibly unusual for a playoff game. OKC shot 39 free throws to Dallas’ 32.
This series heads to Dallas for Game 3 on Thursday at 8:30 local time.
Kevin Durant- B 26pts/10reb/1ast/2stl
Very similarly to Game 1, Durant struggled to hit jump shots. Shawn Marion is a very solid wing defender, and has help Durant to just 34.1% shooting so far this series. Being the scoring champ, Kevin Durant is not going to shoot poorly forever, so it is a good sign that the team is winning despite his performances.
Russell Westbrook- B+ 29pts/2reb/2ast
Westbrook played well on both sides of the ball tonight. He was put on Jason Terry and he shut him down for the most part. On offense, Westbrook was able to get to the rim and get fouled as well as hit the mid-range jumpers.
Kendrick Perkins- A- 13pts/6reb/1blk
I was really surprised by the beginning of the game. Perkins actually scored, and it was with efficiency. He ended up with 13 points on five shots. The Mavericks went small, which forced the Thunder to not play Perkins on Dirk that much. In 27 minutes, Perkins played some solid defense to go along with the weird scoring output.
Serge Ibaka- D 2pts/4reb/1ast/1blk
There wasn’t much to take from Ibaka’s game this time. He didn’t play all too much, and didn’t have an impact when he did. Again Ibaka struggled guarding Nowitzki out on the wing. He only blocked one shot and grabbed four rebounds to go with his two points. Not the best game for the young big man while he gains playoff experience.
James Harden- A 15pts/7reb/5ast/3stl
So far in this series, James Harden has taken 20 free throws, and only 14 field goal attempts. The Mavericks have not figured out how to prevent him from getting to the rim due to their lack of size in the paint. Harden is has been the X-Factor in these game by finding ways to score, even if he’s not hitting his shots.
Rest of the Thunder- B+
Finally the bench got it going. James Harden was the only bench player to score in Game 1, while in Game 2, the non-Harden bench scored 17 points. Derek Fisher led the way with 11 of his own, including a late 3 and a buzzer beater at the end of the first half. Fisher showed flashes from his previous playoff accomplishments, and he looks to continue to contribute positively to another title run. Nick Collison was assigned the task of stopping Dirk Nowitzki for most of the game. He was doing very well until fouling out with nine minutes left in the game.