Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic grabbed 20 rebounds for the first time in his NBA career in a 114-110 overtime win over the Sacramento Kings on Tuesday.
Doncic scored 34 points, pulled down 20 boards and also had 12 assists for his second triple-double in three games since the NBA resumed action inside the Orlando bubble. Doncic was 12-of-24 from the field in 44 minutes and was also 8-of-11 from the free throw line. His 11 free throw attempts were just one shy of Sacramento’s total free throw attempts as a team.
Luka Doncic with the monster 30/20 triple-double!
34 PTS (12/24 FG)
20 REB (Career-High)
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) August 4, 2020
The game was Doncic’s 16th triple-double for the season. And he’s coming ridiculously close to averaging one on the year, though he’ll ultimately fall short. Doncic is averaging 28.9 points, 9.3 rebounds and 8.8 assists per game this year. It’s a big reason why he’ll get MVP votes at the end of the year and it wouldn’t be that much of a shock to see him come in third behind Giannis Antetokoumpo and LeBron James in the voting.
The game went to overtime after a scoreless final 112 seconds. Maxi Kleber hit a free throw to tie the game at 95-95 with 1:52 left and then neither team could score a point until the extra period.
Mavericks had 38 more free throws
Dallas got to the free throw line a lot. Sacramento did not.
The Mavericks attempted 50 free throws on Tuesday as Kristaps Porzingis also had 11 free throw attempts. The Kings, meanwhile, shot just 12 free throws. It’s the largest free throw differential in an NBA game since 2016. And given the margin of victory, it’s pretty clear that Dallas’ ability to get to the foul line at a far greater rate than Sacramento was the key to the victory.
Games with 50 FTA occasionally happen, but games with a 38 FTA differential are rarer. Per @StatHead, it's the largest difference since January 2016, and that was a game that involved Hack-A: https://t.co/Jp22WjkIBV https://t.co/NHwE4rZiOX
— Kevin Pelton (@kpelton) August 4, 2020
The game linked in that tweet above was a Jan. 20, 2016 game between the Detroit Pistons and Houston Rockets. The Pistons won 123-114 as the Rockets fouled Andre Drummond as much as they could.
Drummond shot 36 free throws that night — he made only 13 of them — as Detroit was 35-of-59 from the stripe. The Rockets, meanwhile, were 16-of-18 from the line.
Sacramento chasing the play-in series
The loss hurts Sacramento’s slim chances of sneaking into the playoffs via the eighth-seed play-in series.
The Kings are now 28-39, 3.5 games behind Memphis for the eighth spot. But most importantly, the Kings are also behind the Portland Trail Blazers, San Antonio Spurs and the New Orleans Pelicans in the race for that eighth spot. Only Phoenix is behind Sacramento among teams that were invited to the seeding games in the bubble.
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.
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