Mavericks stun Lakers as Maxi Kleber scores six points in final seven seconds, including buzzer-beating 3
The Dallas Mavericks pulled off one of their biggest wins of the season on Friday night in stunning fashion when Maxi Kleber hit a devastating three-pointer to lead the Los Angeles Lakers 111-110.
After Anthony Davis missed one of two free throws with 6.7 seconds left, the Mavericks had the ball with a chance to tie or win the game. But for most of those 6.7 seconds, it looked like they might not even fire as Kyrie Irving dribbled the ball around and around with several defenders right above him. Eventually, he noticed that Kléber had opened up on the flank and made a pass to him. Wasting no time, the German big man caught and fired in one motion, and as time passed, he only hit the net.
The bench exploded and threw itself to the floor – March Madness style – burying its hero in a pile of bodies.
MAXI KLEBER DEFEATED THE LAKERS 🤯 pic.twitter.com/opoBMjTWqG
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) March 18, 2023
While the winning match was obviously the biggest blow of the evening, it wasn’t Kléber’s only key move. With 7.2 seconds left and four behind the Mavericks, he fouled Anthony Davis on a 3-pointer, calmly went to the line and made all three free throws. All of Kleber’s 10 points of the game came in the fourth quarter, and six of them came in the last 7.2 seconds. Who needs Luka Doncic anyway?
It was the second straight dramatic victory for the Mavericks, who defeated the San Antonio Spurs in overtime on Wednesday to win two straight games for the first time since the All-Star break.
Despite all the hype following the Kyrie Irving trade, the last month has been a real test for the Mavs. Injuries and poor defensive play put them right in the middle of a wild Western Conference playoff race. With their win over the Lakers, they are now 36-35, currently in sixth place. However, they are only behind the Golden State Warriors on a tiebreak and only have a two-game lead over the 11th-seeded Utah Jazz.
The Mavs will need every win they can get, and Kleber’s shot could be the difference between a guaranteed playoff spot and a play-in spot.