LOS ANGELES CLIPPERS (2-1) at DALLAS MAVERICKS (1-2)
Time: 2:30 p.m.
Location: Lake Buena Vista, Fla.
TV: ABC (Ch. 8, locally).
Radio: ESPN 103.3 FM; Univision 1270 AM (Spanish)
About the Mavs: The left ankle injury to Luka Dončić is a major question mark for the Mavericks as they try to avoid a 3-1 hole in the best-of-seven series. Dončić is officially listed as questionable and the Mavericks won’t know until near game time whether the All-Star point guard will be available or not . . . The oddsmakers clearly are not convinced that Dončić will play in Game 4 as they have installed the Clippers as 8-point favorites in what amounts to nothing less than a crucial game for the Mavericks . . . The best news for the Mavericks is that Kristaps Porzingis is coming off a 34-point night in Game 3 and, while the Mavericks lost, it was a good sign that they can light up the scoreboard even without Dončić. In addition to Porzingis, Seth Curry and Tim Hardaway Jr. both had playoff career-best 22-point nights in Game 3 . . . Trey Burke has been one of the best surprises of the bubble for the Mavericks, averaging 9.3 points in the three games. More impressively, the Mavericks are a plus-39 when he’s on the floor in the playoffs . . . The Mavericks know the magnitude of this game. Teams that are down 3-1 in a best-of-seven series have only come back to win the series 11 times in NBA history. Nobody’s done it in the last three playoffs . . . Defense remains a major focal point for the Mavericks as they surrendered 36 points to Kawhi Leonard on Friday and six other Clippers reached double figures.
About the Clippers: Expected to be one of the favorites for the NBA title this season, the Clippers have done nothing to change the opinion while taking the lead in this series. They have relied on their depth, but also the strength of Kawhi Leonard to make up for the slump that Paul George has been in for the last two games. The 6-8 swingman is 7-for-33 from the field in the those two games . . . Landry Shamet was a nice surprise for the Clippers in Game 3 with 18 points as he started in place of injured point guard Patrick Beverley, who remains questionable with a calf strain. “Landry was fantastic,” said coach Doc Rivers of the second-year guard who came to the Clippers in a trade from Philadelphia. “He knows our guys better, probably knows our system better. He’s going to play off of Kawhi and P.G. and let the game come to him. With Sham on the floor, you just can’t leave him because he can make shots. I thought he was great.” . . . The Clippers continue to be the more physical team through three games with Montrezl Harrell, Ivica Zubac and Marcus Morris all having flashes of dominance . . . Morris has been particularly effective at both ends of the floor. He has hit 8-of-15 3-pointers in the series and has averaged 15.7 points and 7.3 rebounds per game while often taking the tough challenge of guarding Luka Doncic or even 7-3 Kristaps Porzingis.