Leonard leads Clippers past Doncic, Mavs to reach 2nd round

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Dallas Mavericks' Luka Doncic (77) watches as Los Angeles Clippers' Kawhi Leonard (2) scores during the second half of an NBA first round playoff game Sunday, Aug. 30, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – The Los Angeles Clippers knocked him around and shut his teammates down, and still Luka Doncic kept coming.

Kawhi Leonard wasn't worried, because nothing rattles him in the postseason.

“This is playoff basketball and everything is not going to go your way,” Leonard said. “You’re going to have downs and ups. Just got to keep playing.”

Now his team will keep playing into the second round.

Leonard had 33 points and 14 rebounds and the Clippers eliminated Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks with a 111-97 victory Sunday in Game 6 of the first-round series.

Doncic capped a superb first postseason with 38 points, nine rebounds and nine assists, keeping it interesting into the fourth quarter even while playing without injured teammate Kristaps Porzingis.

But with Leonard reaching the 30-point mark for his career-best fifth straight playoff game and a strong defensive effort, the Clippers simply had too many answers.

“I’m proud of our team, how we fight," Doncic said. “I think we fight until the end. The Clippers have an amazing team so it was hard, but I think we gave everything.”