Leonard scores 33 as Clippers eliminate Mavericks

Kawhi Leonard had 33 points, 14 rebounds and seven assists and the Los Angeles Clippers eliminated the Dallas Mavericks from the playoffs with a 111-97 victory in Game 6 on Sunday in the NBA bubble near Orlando.Ivica Zubac had 15 points and 11 rebounds, while Paul George contributed 15 points, nine boards and seven assists for the Clippers. Leonard added five steals.The Clippers advanced to the second round of the Western Conference playoffs, where they await the winner of the Utah Jazz-Denver Nuggets series.Luka Doncic had 38 points, nine assists and nine rebounds for the Mavericks. Dorian Finney-Smith added 16 points and Tim Hardaway Jr. chipped in 10.Dallas rallied from a 23-point, third-quarter deficit, pulling to within 88-82 on Doncic’s 3-pointer with 9:28 left in the fourth. But Los Angeles regrouped and pulled away behind the play of Leonard and Reggie Jackson, who sank four 3-pointers in the final quarter and finished with 14 points.The Clippers pounced on the Mavericks in the third quarter. L.A. opened the second half with a 20-3 surge, capped by Leonard’s three-point play that made it 77-54 midway through the third.Consecutive three-point plays by Doncic, who scored 16 points in the third, in the final minute of the quarter pulled the Mavericks within 85-74 heading into the fourth.The Clippers led 57-51 at the break. They limited the Mavericks to only two field goals during the final 5:14 of the half and outscored them 28-17 in the second quarter.Clippers forward Marcus Morris Sr. was ejected late in the first quarter after being whistled for a flagrant-2 foul on Doncic. Morris slapped Doncic on the head as the latter drove to the bucket. The two have had heated exchanges throughout the series. Morris finished with nine points.Los Angeles guard Patrick Beverley (calf) sat out his sixth straight playoff game. Dallas was without center Kristaps Porzingis (knee) for the third game in a row.