Thunder withstand Mavericks’ furious fourth-quarter rally

Jalen Williams had 23 points to lead eight players in double-digit scoring as the visiting Oklahoma City Thunder withstood a furious 30-0 fourth-quarter rally by the short-handed Dallas Mavericks in a 126-120 win on Saturday.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had 17 points, Davis Bertans and Cason Wallace scored 15 apiece, Jaylin Williams had 14, and Chet Holmgren added 11 points and 11 rebounds

for Oklahoma City, which won for the eighth time in its last 10 games.

Dallas star Luka Doncic returned after missing one game for the birth of his daughter and recorded his third triple-double of the season with 36 points, 15 rebounds and 18 assists.

The Mavericks trailed by 23 at the start of the fourth quarter before going on a remarkable 30-0 run to take the lead at 117-111 with 4:18 remaining. Seth Curry made three 3-pointers during the stretch.

After A.J. Lawson hit a 3-pointer to put Dallas ahead by four, Oklahoma City scored six straight points to move ahead 122-120 with 40.1 seconds remaining. Doncic committed a turnover on the next possession and Gilgeous-Alexander scored on a layup before Jalen Williams made two foul shots for the final margin.

The Mavericks played without several key players, including Kyrie Irving (right foot soreness), Tim Hardaway Jr. (back spasms), Dante Exum (personal), Josh Green (right elbow sprain) and Maxi Kleber (right small toe dislocation).

Derrick Jones Jr. scored 24 points for the Mavericks, while Dereck Lively II set career highs with 20 points, 16 rebounds and seven blocks. Lawson and Curry scored 12 points apiece for Dallas, which has lost five of its last seven games.

Josh Giddey and Luguentz Dort scored 10 points apiece for Oklahoma City, which trailed in the game’s first six minutes before closing on a 14-3 run to move ahead 33-27.

The Thunder carried the momentum into the second quarter and relied on their perimeter shooting to gain control.

Oklahoma City extended its lead to 67-46 late in the second quarter after Gilgeous-Alexander hit a pair of 3-pointers during an 11-2 run. The Thunder made seven 3-pointers in the period and took a 72-56 lead into the half.

Doncic had 21 points, nine rebounds and five assists in the first half. Gilgeous-Alexander had 13 points to lead Oklahoma City, which shot 13-of-24 (54.2 percent) from beyond the arc.

Playing on the second night of a back-to-back, the Mavericks battled back from a 16-point halftime deficit and used a 12-3 run to pull within 90-81 late in the third quarter.

Oklahoma City quickly regained control with 13 straight points and took a 107-84 lead into the final quarter.