On Monday night, the Dallas Mavericks were once again in enemy territory against the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder held a 1-0 lead in their NBA playoffs matchup heading into Tuesday night's game against the defending NBA champions and were looking to move one step closer to the second round. It was a close one, but the Thunder were able to do just that, winning by a final score of 102-99 and going up 2-0 in the series.
The animosity between the two teams was apparent from the outset as both sides shoved and squabbled. The actual gameplay was just as intense, and the close contest was hard-fought right down to the end.
The Thunder held a lead for most of the first half, but the Mavs battled back in the second half and took a slim lead into the final minute, but a foul on Kevin Durant with 0:50 left put the Thunder back on top, 98-97. Dirk Nowitzki missed a 12-footer with 27 seconds remaining and the Thunder grabbed the rebound. James Harden sank both free throws to give OKC a three-point lead with just 25 seconds left.
Jason Terry put in a layup to cut the lead back to one point, but Harden again nailed his free throws. Terry had two chances to be the hero in the final seconds with a pair of desperation three-point attempts, but neither one fell. As you can see in the video below, he got his best look on the first attempt after pump-faking his defender, but it hit the front of the rim. The second attempt was more contested -- and came a few feet behind the arc -- but hit the heel of the rim.
Nowitzki had 31 points and six rebounds in the losing effort. Russell Westbrook put up 29 points for the Thunder while Durant had 26 points and 10 boards.