Kelly Olynyk, Rockets overpower Mavericks

Kelly Olynyk scored 10 points and pulled down a career-high 18 rebounds to help the Houston Rockets hold on for a 102-93 victory over the visiting Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday, April 7 (Thursday, April 8, Manila time).

Olynyk grabbed two critical rebounds down the stretch after his three-point play gave the Rockets an 89-84 lead with 3:38 to play.

Luka Doncic drew the Mavericks even 63 seconds later before Olynyk corralled an offensive rebound that yielded a John Wall layup. 

When Doncic missed a three-point attempt on the other end, Olynyk crashed the glass and Wall followed with a three-point play that lifted the Rockets to a 94-89 lead.

Houston snapped its five-game skid while ending Dallas' season-best, five-game winning streak.

Wall finished with 31 points, 7 assists, and 4 steals, while Olynyk added 3 assists, 2 steals, and 2 blocks to his ledger. 

Houston's Christian Wood added 22 points – including the team's opening 12 points of the third quarter – and 10 rebounds.

Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis scored 23 points apiece for the Mavericks. 

Doncic missed 17-of-26 attempts and committed 5 turnovers. Tim Hardaway Jr. added 18 points, Jalen Brunson had 14 points, and Porzingis grabbed 12 boards.

In what was a harbinger for things to come in the opening half, more than nine minutes elapsed in the first quarter before someone other than Doncic or Porzingis scored for the Mavericks, with Hardaway drilling a trey at the 2:26 mark. 

When Hardaway converted again from deep on the ensuing possession, Dallas had erased what was once a 10-point deficit and claimed a 20-19 lead.

Houston followed a strong start from Wall and Kevin Porter Jr. with Olynyk grabbing 8 rebounds before making his first field goal with 3:49 left in the second quarter.

Olynyk then followed consecutive treys from Porter with a three-pointer of his own, lifting Houston to a 47-38 lead. 

Dallas cut that margin to 5 points by the break with little production outside of Doncic, Porzingis and Hardaway. 

Starters Dorian Finney-Smith, Nicolo Melli and Josh Richardson combined to shoot 0-for-12 before the break, and they ended the night a combined 3-for-20 for 12 points. – Rappler.com