The Mavericks came into tonight’s game looking to end a four-game losing streak after a three-game road trip as the Houston Rockets were looking for their eighth straight victory. In a back-and-forth game, the Rockets came out on top 94-93 after Chris Paul blocked Jalen Brunson’s last second shot at the buzzer.
Late in the fourth quarter, Luka went up for a rebound and came down funny on his knee. He asked to come out before limping to the bench but finished out the game after the timeout.
“Good, good,” Luka said of how his knee felt after the game. “I just jumped, you know, got a rebound and just felt like a pop so we’ll see.”
Now, someone saying that they felt a pop in their knee is never something you want to hear. Luka says that he’s “good” so we’ll hope and pray that is the case. We should know more tomorrow at practice.
Timeout or no timeout?
On the final play, Luka grabbed a rebound with just under eight seconds left and sped up the court to find himself triple-teamed at the top of the key. He found Jalen Brunson in the corner but his mid-range jumper at the buzzer was blocked by Chris Paul to clinch the victory for Houston.
The Mavericks had one timeout remaining yet Rick Carlisle chose to let the game play out, which he looked back on after the game.
“I decided not to call timeout and go. I always feel in those situations if you have playmakers that you trust, you have a better chance to get a better look if you go; didn’t work out, Carlisle said of the final play. “In hindsight, should’ve called timeout.”
Luka had some thoughts himself on the final play of the game. The 20-year-old rookie wasn’t visibly distraught after the clock hit zero, putting his head into his jersey and sitting on the bench.
“I think honestly we should have called a timeout,” Luka said of the last possession. “It was the last play. Like I said, I always want to get a last shot but it couldn’t be so we have to learn from this.”
Luka continued, “I had to pass it. I saw three people on me so I had to pass it. I think a timeout would’ve been good.”
Every coach or team plays these late game scenarios differently. Tonight, it didn’t work out for Dallas but that doesn’t mean that Rick Carlisle made the wrong choice.
“This is one of those situations in the NBA that you have to make the choice of call the timeout, let the other team get all their best defenders in and set their defense or play basketball,” Carlisle said of deciding whether to call the timeout. “I’d do the same thing again.”
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