DALLAS (AP) — Dallas Mavericks center Dereck Lively II left Game 3 of the Western Conference finals against Minnesota on Sunday night after getting hit in the back of the head by a knee from Karl-Anthony Towns.

The rookie from Duke stayed on the court holding his head after the accidental contact and was down for several minutes before appearing dazed as he was helped off the court and taken to the locker room.

Lively fell as Mike Conley was driving for a missed shot, and Towns was pursuing an offensive rebound when his knee hit Lively’s head in the second quarter.

The 20-year-old Lively and starting center Daniel Gafford played a big role in helping Dallas take a 2-0 lead in the series. Lively was 12 of 12 from the field in the series, including three makes in Game 3, when he was injured.

There was no immediate word on whether Lively would return, but it appeared likely he was headed for concussion protocol.


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