'This Loss Is On Me': Porzingis Returns To Mavs Lineup But Takes Blame for Clippers Game

Mike Fisher

DALLAS - The Dallas Mavericks were in an understandably sour mood following their 110-107 home loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday. But where some might've blamed fate, Mavs star big man Kristaps Porzingis blamed himself.

“I feel like if I’d have played just a little bit better, we’d have won this game,'' Porzingis said following his return to the court after a 10-game absence due to knee soreness. "So this loss is on me.''

It's true that in his 27 minutes of play, Porzingis struggled as a shooter, ending up at just 4-of-17 from the field and 1-of-8 from beyond the arc. KP totaled 10 points and nine rebounds and also had five fouls and two turnovers in a horrendous showing. But the Mavs in general were pleased with the simple fact that Porzingis was able to participate, felt privately that the physical (and talented) Clippers were too much for them in areas that aren't KP's fault, and are mostly troubled by the loss of Dwight Powell, who sustained a nasty Achilles injury in the game and is "feared'' may be lost for the season.

"We're keeping him in our prayers,'' KP said of Powell, "and hopefully he can recover soon.''

The 7-3 Porzingis is averaging 17.3 points and a career-high 9.4 rebounds per game but may be asked to do more for the 27-16 Mavs - eventually - in the absence of Powell.

I have to play better for my team and my coaches,'' Porzingis said. "I know it's my first game back. But I always have high expectations for myself.''