The Dallas Mavericks rallied from 17 points down to eliminate the Oklahoma City Thunder from the NBA Playoffs 117-116 and advance to the Western Conference Finals.

Mavericks legend Dirk Nowitzki was fired up to see it happen:

Dirk of course, played his entire 21-year career with the Mavericks, and his former teammate (and current Mavs head coach) Jason Kidd made comments at the end of the regular season about this current Dallas team being similar to the 2011 team that he and Dirk led to an NBA Championship:

“Well I think the biggest thing is, they're a team,” Kidd responded when asked what qualities make the Mavs a championship contender. “We talk about Luka (Doncic) and Kai (Kyrie Irving) a lot, but there's a lot of pieces to this puzzle that make this thing go. So, very similar to the '11 team. When you talk about Dirk (Nowitzki) and Jason Terry, they had a lot of older guys that didn't get the attention but knew their job and did their job at a high level. It was just all about winning. And I think when you talk to these guys it's all about winning.

No one is into the stats. There will be some individual awards here for some of those guys that deserve it. But at the end of the day, it's all about team and they care for one another.”

The 2011 Mavericks team entered the NBA Playoffs as a sixth seed and ended up winning an NBA title by catching fire at the right time. Could the 2024 Mavs do the same as a fifth seed?

Mavericks outlast Thunder in Game 6

Dallas Mavericks guard Kyrie Irving (11) reacts after the game against the Oklahoma City Thunder in game six of the second round of the 2024 NBA playoffs at American Airlines Center.
© Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Mavericks forward P.J. Washington Jr. made two free throws before an intentional miss with 2.5 seconds left as the Mavs rallied from 17 points down in the second half for a 117-116 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder to finish the second-round series Saturday night.

Washington was fouled on a controversial call that went against Thunder star Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. Oklahoma City challenged the call but were unsuccessful. That left them without a timeout to set up a final shot after Washington's free throws.

The Mavericks wrapped up the series in Game 6 at home against the top-seeded Thunder, just as they did in the first round against the Los Angeles Clippers.

Mavericks star Luka Doncic had 29 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists for his fourth triple-double this postseason.

Dallas, which trailed by 17 early in the third quarter and by nine early in the fourth, will start the Western Conference Finals on the road at the winner of the Denver Nuggets and Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday night.

Denver and Minnesota are playing in a decisive Game 7 in Denver on Sunday.