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Gobert takes blame for Doncic winner: 'Let my team down'

Jordan Johnson / National Basketball Association / Getty

Rudy Gobert assumed responsibility for the Minnesota Timberwolves' Game 2 loss Friday after he was left to defend Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic on his game-winning three.

"We just switched on the pick-and-roll, and I was on an ISO on Luka, and he hit a big-time shot. I let my team down on that last play," the Timberwolves center told reporters postgame, courtesy of ESPN's Dave McMenamin.

Gobert ended up switched onto Doncic after Mavericks center Dereck Lively set a screen on Timberwolves wing Jaden McDaniels, who began the play guarding Doncic. Though he did well to stay in front of the Slovenian star, Gobert could only watch as Doncic created just enough space for a step-back three, giving Dallas a one-point lead with three seconds to play.

Naz Reid then barely missed his own 3-point attempt on the final possession, cementing a 2-0 series lead for the Mavericks as the series shifts to Dallas for Games 3 and 4.

"They believed in me to get a stop, and (Doncic) scored. And he scored a three, which is something that he does very well," Gobert continued. "So, I'm definitely taking that responsibility that I need to be better in that situation."

Doncic's game-winner notwithstanding, Gobert had a productive all-around performance for Minnesota. The Defensive Player of the Year was the only Timberwolves starter to finish with a positive plus-minus, finishing with 16 points on 6-of-10 shooting and going 4-of-6 from the free-throw line. He added 10 rebounds, two assists, two steals, and a block in 38 minutes.

However, aside from Gobert and Reid, the Timberwolves lacked offensive efficiency, especially from star duo Anthony Edwards and Karl-Anthony Towns. The two combined to shoot 9-of-33 from the floor, including 3-of-12 from deep, after going 12-of-36 in their Game 1 loss Wednesday.

Edwards' 29.8% shooting over his last three games is now the worst mark of any three-game span in his career, courtesy of ESPN. Meanwhile, Towns didn't return to the floor after making way for Gobert with 8:40 to play in the fourth quarter.

Doncic, who finished with a game-high 32 points and a triple-double, was visibly fired up after the shot and appeared to direct some trash talk toward Gobert in the aftermath.

While speaking with the "Inside the NBA" crew postgame, the Mavericks' hero seemingly snuck in one final jab at the Frenchman.

"I mean, he's long, you know. He can't move. I can't move fast, but I can move faster than him," he said.

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