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3 keys to the Utah Jazz’s Game 2 loss to the Dallas Mavericks

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Jalen Brunson and Spencer Dinwiddie celebrate a 3-point basket.

Dallas Mavericks guard Jalen Brunson (13) and Spencer Dinwiddie, right, celebrate a 3-point basket made by Brunson in the first half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Utah Jazz, Monday, April 18, 2022, in Dallas.

Tony Gutierrez, Associated Press

The Dallas Mavericks evened up the series, beating the Utah Jazz 110-104 behind great performances by Jalen Brunson and Maxi Kleber.

The first-round playoffs series heads back to Salt Lake City knotted at 1-1, with Game 3 on Thursday at Vivint Arena.

Here are three keys to the Jazz’s loss:

  • Without star Luka Doncic in the lineup, Brunson and Kleber were fantastic for Dallas. Brunson scored early and often, scoring a career-high 41 points and adding eight rebounds and five assists. Kleber was key down the stretch, scoring 25 points on 8-of-11 shooting from 3-point range.

The Mavericks made 17 uncontested 3s, with Kleber hitting seven, according to ESPN Stats & Info.

  • Dallas scorched the nets from 3-point range, shooting 46.8% from deep. The Jazz’s defense was poor, as the Mavericks drove and kicked the ball out, leading to open corner 3s late in the contest.
  • Mike Conley played 22 minutes, scoring zero points on 0-for-7 shooting. Donovan Mitchell led the Jazz with 34 points, but was 3-of-11 in the fourth quarter.