Chris Paul takes over fourth, Suns pull away from Mavericks to take 2-0 series lead
How much did the Suns dominate — or, how bad did things get for the Mavericks — in the second half of Game 2? Luka Doncic wore down and had as many turnovers (4) as he did buckets. Chris Paul took over, scoring 14 of his 28 points on the night in the fourth, and Phoenix shot 70.7% as a team for the half. Turns out, the Suns shot the ball well all game.
Suns' true shooting percentage tonight -- 76% -- is the highest ever for a team in a playoff game outside the bubble.— Dan Feldman (@DanFeldmanNBA) May 5, 2022
The Suns scored 71 points in the second half and pulled away from the Mavericks to win Game 2 comfortably, 129-109. The Suns have a commanding 2-0 lead, with the series shifting to Dallas on Friday night.
This was the fourth time this postseason Paul has scored at least 10 points in the fourth quarter — he was clutch all season and carried that over to the playoffs.
Doncic remains the hub of everything Dallas does on offense — he had 35 points on 13-of-22 shooting, plus seven assists — so Phoenix decided to target him, dragging him into pick-and-rolls in nearly every half-court set. Doncic is a solid defender (mostly because he’s 6'8"), but having to expend that much energy on both ends wore him down. By the end, CP3 was driving past him, and on offense he was turning the ball over more.
"[Doncic] had a great game, but no one else showed,” Dallas coach Jason Kidd said, via the Associated Press. “We’ve got to get other guys shooting the ball better. We can’t win with just him out there scoring 30 a night. Not this time of the year and playing the best team in the league.”
Jalen Brunson again struggled for the Mavericks, scoring just 9 points on 3-of-12 shooting. Reggie Bullock was the second-best player on Dallas, finishing with 16 points on 5-of-9 shooting. On the list of positives for Dallas, Davis Bertans gave them quality minutes in the first half, scoring nine points with three 3-pointers.
Phoenix got 30 points on 15 shots out of Devin Booker, and Jae Crowder finished with 15. As a team, the Suns shot 13-of-25 from 3.