The LA Lakers just suffered a heart-breaking loss to the Dallas Mavericks behind Maxi Kleber's buzzer-beating three-point shot. LA clung to a 110-108 lead with 6.7 left in the game before Kleber's game-winning trifecta.
Fans quickly pounced on Laker Nation's misery:
"This one is on AD and Ham. Y’all are a pathetic franchise."
Kleber played 29 minutes and finished the night with 10 points, none bigger than the last three that decided the game. He went 2-4 from the field, including 1-3 from behind the arc.
The Dallas Mavericks entered the fourth quarter leading 89-80. D'Angelo Russell, Anthony Davis and Dennis Schroder allowed the LA Lakers to close the gap just three minutes into the said period.
An Austin Reaves floater eventually pushed the Lakers to grab a 97-96 lead. Momentum swung completely to the home team's side when Schroder hit a layup, giving the Lakers a 100-105 lead.
The LA Lakers looked like they were on their way to a win with a 109-105 lead with under 10 seconds left in the game. Unfortunately, Anthony Davis blundered by fouling Maxi Kleber from the three-point line.
The Dallas Mavericks forward made all of his free throws to cut the lead to 109-108. Davis, who was fouled on the next possession, hit just one of two free throws.
AD's miss set up Kleber's heroics.
The LA Lakers will rue this loss if they get eliminated from play-in contention
The Dallas Mavericks didn't have Luka Doncic, who was sidelined with a thigh injury. LeBron James wasn't also available, but the LA Lakers undoubtedly had the deeper and more balanced team.
Kyrie Irving, who was questionable heading into the game, caused the home team problems early with 20 first-half points. The mercurial point guard didn't show any signs of a sore foot as he finished with 38 points in 39 minutes.
Without Irving, who knows how Dallas would have played in this game. The Lakers aggressively went after the All-Star point guard in the second-half, particularly late in the fourth quarter.
Irving has to be credited for making the right plays and the right reads in carrying the Mavericks to the win.
The LA Lakers, on the other hand, stopped being aggressive when they finally grabbed the lead. They were sloppy on both ends of the floor, which caused their collapse.
The loss has to be one of Anthony Davis' most embarrassing performances. AD had plenty of rest as he didn't suit up for the Lakers versus the Houston Rockets last Wednesday.
Anthony Davis finished with 26 points, 10 rebounds and three assists. He committed, however, two errors that cost the Lakers the game. AD fouled Kleber from deep and then lost him when the German sunk the game-winning three-pointer.
The loss meant that the Mavericks won the season-series 3-1. If they end up with the same record at the end of the regular-season, Dallas will go through because of their edge in head-to-head games.
The LA Lakers still have 11 more games to go. If they fail to punch a play-in ticket, this might be the game that will nag them in the offseason.