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Mavericks crush Timberwolves, will meet Celtics in the NBA Finals

Dallas dominated from start to finish in a 124-103 victory, making them champions of the Western Conference (4-1).

26 de mayo de 2024; Dallas, Texas, EE.UU.; El escolta de los Dallas Mavericks Luka Doncic (77) controla el balón contra el pívot de los Minnesota Timberwolves Rudy Gobert (27) en el segundo cuarto durante el tercer partido de las finales de la conferencia oeste de los playoffs de la NBA 2024 en el American Airlines Center.

(Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports/Sipa USA / Cordon Press)

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(AFP / VOZ MEDIA) With a massive performance from stars Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving, the Dallas Mavericks defeated the Minnesota Timberwolves 124-103 on Thursday to win NBA Western Conference Finals and meet the Boston Celtics for the title of league champion.

The Mavs won the best-of-seven conference finals 4-1 and will return to the NBA Finals for the first time since winning the title in 2011.

Doncic led the way to victory by scoring 20 points in the first quarter to lift Dallas to its third conference title. The franchise previously won the West in 2006 and 2011.

The Slovenian, a finalist for the Most Valuable Player award this season, outscored the Timberwolves by himself in the opening period, with his team jumping out to an early 35-19 lead.

“This trophy's the whole team man, it's not me. This means a lot. We are going to the NBA Finals. Just can't believe it man,” Doncic said.

Doncic ended the game with 36 points, 10 rebounds and 4 assists. He and Kyrie Irving combined for 72 points on a night in which the latter totaled 36 points, 4 rebounds and 5 assists.

“Just enjoy the moment and realize how hard you worked to get there, nothing's guaranteed in this league,” said Irving, who will be playing in his fourth NBA Finals.

“We couldn't have done it without a collective responsibility. Us working together, every single day, practicing hard, doing the little things. We should reward ourselves by playing hard,” he added.

No worries for the Mavs

In the third quarter, the Mavericks reached a lead of up to 36 points, Minnesota responded in the last period, being on the brink of elimination and managed to narrow the gap to 21 points, but with just under three minutes on the clock, both coaches emptied their benches with the game all but over.

“This group has a special connection,” Jason Kidd said. “We are playing at a high level but this is a special group with a connection on and off the court.”

Karl-Anthony Towns finished the game with a double-double of 28 points and 12 rebounds while Anthony Edwards contributed 28 points, 9 rebounds and 6 assists.

On their path to the NBA Finals, the Mavericks defeated the Los Angeles Clippers 4-2 in the first round, the Oklahoma City Thunder 4-2 in the conference semifinals and tonight, they achieved a 4-1 victory against the Minnesota Timberwolves.

In 2024, the Mavericks will aspire to win their second title in the world's top basketball league, this time against the Boston Celtics. The first game against the Eastern Conference champion will be played on June 6 at TD Garden in Boston.