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SIM SZN: Lakers hold off Mavericks on the road and take Game 3

The starters kept the Lakers afloat, and their bench finished the job.

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Editor’s note: As we wait for real NBA basketball to return, we’re going to simulate the rest of the games that the Los Angeles Lakers have on their schedule on NBA 2K20.

After getting blown out on their home court on Wednesday, the Lakers retook the lead in the Western Conference Finals with a 114-106 win over the Dallas Mavericks at the American Airlines Center on Sunday.

Anthony Davis helped Los Angeles get out to an early lead, scoring 15 points in the first quarter, including 8 second chance points. The Mavericks did a decent job of protecting their paint in Game 2, but the Lakers got whatever they wanted at the rim in Game 3, outscoring Dallas 50-24 in the painted area. Davis ended the game with 36 points and 13 rebounds.

In spite of the fact the Mavericks laid out the red carpet for the Lakers in the paint, they were able to hang around for most of the game, and they even made a comeback attempt in the second half. After trailing by nine points at halftime, the Mavericks went on a 11-2 run to start the third quarter and tied the game. Luka Doncic led the charge for Dallas to start the second half, scoring 9 of his 22 second-half points in the first three minutes of the third quarter.

What doomed Dallas in the homestretch of the game was their bench. Once Doncic went to rest, their offense looked rudimentary, and the Lakers’ defense made it nearly impossible for them to score.

For the game, the Lakers’ bench outscored the Mavericks’ bench 50-24. The Mavericks’ bench only scored 6 points in the second half. Dion Waiters led all bench scorers with 20 points, and he did it on 4-5 shooting from behind the arc.

Dallas has shown their ability to bounce back a few times in the postseason, but the Lakers will be looking to build on their 2-1 series lead when they see the Mavericks again on Wednesday. Danny Green is expected to be available then.

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