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PG pinpoints mental health for recent slump: 'I was just in a dark place'

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Los Angeles Clippers wing Paul George finally snapped out of his series-opening shooting woes with a game-high 35 points against the Dallas Mavericks Tuesday.

After his team's 154-111 blowout victory, the 30-year-old spoke candidly about his recent on-court issues, attributing them to struggles with mental health while at the NBA's Disney World campus.

"Whatever it was, I mean, the bubble got the best of me," George said in an on-court interview postgame. "I was just in a dark place. I wasn't really here. I checked out. For these past couple of games, it was just difficult.

"But you know, shoutout to people that stood behind me, that was in my corner, the positivity. My teammates, my family, friends, everybody - thank you to everybody that reached out to me. I was just in a bad place, and I found my way. I'm back, and I look forward to the rest of this run."

George continued to talk about his struggles in a postgame media availability session.

“I underestimated mental health," George told reporters, according to The Athletic's Jovan Buha. "I had anxiety. I had depression. ... Games 2, 3, 4, I felt like I wasn’t there.”

Through the first four games of the series, George shot just 29% from the floor and 22.2% on threes, adding up to a modest 15.3 points per game. On Tuesday, the six-time All-Star shot 12-of-18 (66.7%) from the floor, including 4-of-8 from behind the 3-point arc.

The Clippers have a chance to close out the Mavericks Thursday. A series victory would mark the team's first Western Conference semifinals appearance since 2015.

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