Luka Doncic’s hat-trick pushes the Mavs to a 3-2 lead over the Thunder

OKLAHOMA CITY — Luka Doncic scored 31 points on a triple-double as the Dallas Mavericks beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 104-92 on Wednesday night to take a 3-2 lead in their Western Conference semifinal series.

Doncic, the league’s leading scorer in the regular season, struggled in the series against Oklahoma City. While playing with a sprained right knee and sore left ankle, he averaged just 22 points on 39% shooting through the first four games. He made 12 of 22 field goals in Game 5 and had 11 assists and 10 rebounds in his sixth career playoff triple-double.

Derrick Jones Jr. scored a career-high 19 points in the playoffs, and P.J. Washington Jr. added 10 points and 10 rebounds for Dallas, which shot 52.6% from the floor. The No. 5 Mavericks can advance to the Western Conference Finals if they win at home on Saturday.

“The whole team stepped up,” Doncic said. “I couldn’t do it without my teammates. Everyone who stepped on the floor gave 100% effort. We play as a team, we win as a team, we lose as a team. This team is special, man. We’ve only been together five months, and I’ve had a lot of fun.” With this team.”

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander scored 30 points for the top-seeded Thunder, but no other Oklahoma City player scored more than 13 points.

The Mavericks won Game 5 on the road, just as they did in the first round against the Los Angeles Clippers. Dallas held Oklahoma City to 42.5% shooting.

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Oklahoma City tried to jump-start its struggling offense by replacing Josh Giede with Isaiah Joe in the starting lineup. Giddey did not start for the first time in 229 combined regular season and postseason games.

“At the end of the day, I make a lot of different decisions,” Thunder coach Mark Daigneault said. “They’re not going to be all right or wrong. I’m doing the best I can. I think this is a good time to take a look at that. Mainly to try and get us into a more offensive, rhythmic start. So get Josh into more of a playmaking role where he can play with his identity in the unit.” the second.”

Dallas led by 15 points in the second quarter and led 54-44 at halftime. Jones scored 15 points before halftime.

Gilgeous-Alexander scored 14 points in the third quarter, but Dallas led 79-67.

Dallas raised its lead to 18 points at the start of the fourth quarter before the Thunder rebounded. A three-pointer from Gilgeous-Alexander cut the deficit to 89-79 with less than seven minutes remaining and forced Dallas to call a time-out. The Thunder never got closer than seven points the rest of the way.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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