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Dallas Mavericks at Minnesota Timberwolves

Team Totals: Mavs 102.5, Wolves 107

Injury Report: Mike Conley (Q, calf), Luka Doncic (Q, knee/ankle), Dereck Lively II (D, neck)

Mavs projected starters: Luka Doncic, Kyrie Irving, Derrick Jones Jr., P.J. Washington, Daniel Gafford

Wolves projected starters: Mike Conley, Anthony Edwards, Jaden McDaniels, Karl-Anthony Towns, Rudy Gobert

Offensive Ranks: Mavs 8th, Wolves 16th
Defensive Ranks: Mavs 17th, Wolves 1st

Kidd quotes: Said the Wolves deserve credit for extending the series and the Mavs didn’t play their best, said Maxi was “really good” and he “was a plus” in Game 4, said to give KAT credit for turning it around, said they got great looks and just didn’t make ’em, said Hardy isn’t scared and the coaching staff trusts his playmaking/scoring, said “I love the way Hardy is playing” right now.

Finch quotes: Said it was tough to play through all that foul trouble, said KAT was shot-ready and made some huge shots, said they just have to keep battling to win another game, said the Mavs were leaving guys open a bit, said they let SloMo run some offense and he understands how to get guys involved, said KAT got himself going, said they usually close games well because of their defense, said not turning it over late really helped, said he thought the refs were inconsistent, said his job is to inject some energy into the team, said they went Ant on Luka and Jaden on Kyrie to shake things up.

Stats and Notes:

Rim points per game: Mavs 20th, Wolves 12th

Rim points allowed per game: Mavs 16th, Wolves 1st

Catch and shoot points per game: Mavs 17th, Wolves 21st

Catch and shoot points allowed per game: Mavs 17th, Wolves 5th

PNR handler scoring per game: Mavs 9th, Wolves 25th

PNR handler scoring allowed per game: Mavs 15th, Wolves 20th

Transition scoring per game: Mavs 8th, Wolves 25th

Transition scoring allowed per game: Mavs 18th,  Wolves 7th

*The Wolves made some huge adjustments in Game 4 to help them get the win. Even before the game started, TNT noted that Finch was going to put Anthony Edwards on Luka Doncic and Jaden McDaniels on Kyrie Irving (I’ll get to those guys more below). The Wolves also shifted their defense a bit to pinch in and leave the corners a little more. The Mavs upped their corner 3-point frequency to 18.2, which is way up from where it has been this series (Game 1 4.4%, Game 2 5.6%, and Game 3 13.0%). The Mavs did really make them pay with their 43.8% on corner 3-pointers. The Mavs were also excellent at the rim at an 80 FG%, but everything else was awful at 30.8% on mid-range and 29.2% on above-the-break treys. Dallas was great with their C&S shots at 1.14 PPP, but they had their worst dribble-jumper efficiency in a game since Game 3 against the Clippers. Despite the Mavs having great efficiency around the basket, their volume wasn’t too much at 21 possessions. Considering the Wolves held the Mavs to just 85.7 points per 100 possessions in the halfcourt, the Wolves will likely have a similar variation to their defense today, which could open up some shots for role players. For the Wolves on offense, they finally were able to make their 3-pointers at 1.15 PPP on spot-up plays and 1.69 PPP on their C&S shots. They made 57.1% of their corner 3-pointers, but their volume on 3-pointers did tick down. The efficiency was the difference after failing there in the last two games. For the second game in a row, the Wolves were able to get to their rim offense with 37 points. Their offense wasn’t all that great due to some poor free-throw shooting, and it was more about their defense getting on track again.

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