Kings 115, Mavericks 113, OT
Sunday, May 12th 2002, 12:00 am
News On 6
DALLAS (AP) _ Mike Bibby scored the overtime-forcing and game-winning baskets, but fill-in starter Bobby Jackson put the Sacramento Kings in position for the comeback.
``Bobby Jackson was the guy that we couldn't stop, we couldn't handle,'' said Dallas Mavericks coach Don Nelson. ``Not that other players couldn't play well, we just couldn't stop Bobby Jackson.''
Jackson scored 15 of his 26 points in the fourth quarter, and Bibby scored on a driving layup with 12.2 seconds left in overtime Saturday, to give the Kings a 115-113 win and a 3-1 series lead over Dallas in their best-of-seven Western Conference semifinal.
``If I didn't shoot it, I was going to pass it back out, but nobody came to me so I just laid it up,'' Bibby said. ``Bobby played a big game, he hit some big shots.''
Jackson filled in for injured All-Star Peja Stojakovic, who didn't play after severely spraining his right ankle in Game 3 on Thursday. Stojakovic is also questionable for Game 5 when the series goes back to Sacramento on Monday night.
The Kings also had to overcome the losses of big men Chris Webber, another All-Star, and Vlade Divac to fouls and a big game by Dallas' Big 3.
Bibby, who finished with 24 points and had a driving layup with 31 seconds in regulation to tie the game at 109, drove around Michael Finley and over Dirk Nowitzki for the game-winner.
Nowitzki, who had 31 points and 12 rebounds after being held in check the first three games of the series, drove hard into the lane, but missed a potential game-tying shot with 2.5 seconds left. Nowitzki couldn't control the rebound, and by the time Finley retrieved the ball and heaved a long shot, the game was over.
``We pretty much got what we wanted, we got both of their big guys to foul out, but we couldn't capitalize,'' Nowitzki said. ``I still can't believe we lost the game.''
Finley had 28 points for the Mavericks. Steve Nash scored 24, but also had nine turnovers.
Webber had 30 points and 10 rebounds, but fouled out with 4:45 left and the Kings ahead 100-99. Divac fouled out early in overtime.
After Webber fouled out, he got the team to huddle around him.
``I put my trust in them to take us home, It was a total team effort,'' said Webber, whose 18-footer a minute earlier made it 98-97, Sacramento's first lead since the first quarter.
``All of our guys understood they had to do more without Peja,'' Kings coach Rick Adelman said. ``It's like Dallas without Nash or Nowitzki.''
Bibby hit a 14-footer to open the five-minute overtime, and after Divac fouled out, Nowitzki hit two free throws to tie it.
Finley then made a basket to give Dallas the lead, but after Scot Pollard's two free throws with 3:12 left, Bibby had the only other score.
Doug Christie, who also sprained his right ankle Thursday night, played 51 minutes. He scored just 12 points, but had six steals and five rebounds.
The Kings had led only for 17 seconds late in the first quarter before Jackson scored 11 points in a 17-2 fourth-quarter run that made it 100-97.
``We knew they were going to make a run, and we knew we were going to make a run,'' Jackson said. ``We just had to deal with it. We had to come out and be aggressive and attack the basket.''
Bibby's 3-pointer put Sacramento ahead 105-101 with 3:44 left, but after a shot-clock violation by the Kings, Nash made a fadeaway jumper and Nowitzki had a putback to tie it again.
Nowitzki averaged 33.3 points and 15.7 rebounds in a dominating three-game sweep of Minnesota inn the first round. But he had been limited to 21.3 points and 11.3 rebounds in the first three games against Sacramento.
Nelson met with Nowitzki for more than 20 minutes before practice Friday. Nelson's goal was to repair the psyche of his young All-Star forward, who was obviously frustrated the first three games and still finished 9-of-28 shooting in Game 4.
And Nowitzki didn't get off to a good start Saturday, even though the Mavericks did.
Dallas led 12-1 after Raef LaFrentz scored 10 points in the first 3 1/2 minutes. But LaFrentz scored only one more basket the rest of the game and Nowitzki missed his first seven shots.
Sacramento used a 12-0 run to negate the quick Dallas start. Webber scored eight points in the spurt, ending it with a dunk with 1:09 left in the first quarter that gave the Kings their first lead.
The Mavericks had a 54-49 lead right before halftime when Nash made a one-handed shot while falling down. But Webber hit a 3-pointer and Nelson was called for a technical foul at the end of the half because he was upset about some non-foul calls.