Heat (18-7) AT MAVS (17-7)

Time: 7:30 p.m. CT

Place: American Airlines Center, Dallas


Radio: ESPN 103.3 FM; Univision 1270 AM (Spanish)

About the Mavs: Tonight’s game starts a five-game period where the Mavs will play the iron of the Eastern Conference over the ensuing nine days. After the Heat, the Mavs play at the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday, then they’ll host the Boston Celtics on Wednesday, play at the Philadelphia 76ers on Friday and will be on the road at the Toronto Raptors on Dec. 22. The Bucks are the top seed in the Eastern Conference, the Sixers are second, the Heat is third, the Celtics are fourth and the Raptors are fifth. . .Following Thursday’s 122-111 win over the Detroit Pistons in Mexico City, the Mavs are tied with the Celtics for the sixth-best record in the entire NBA. . .Luka Doncic led the charge against the Pistons as he registered his eighth triple-double of the season – 41 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists. Also in that game, Seth Curry came off the bench to pour in 30 points on 11-of-15 shots, and Kristaps Porzingis added 20 points, eight rebounds and three blocks. It’s the fourth time this season Porzingis has had at least 20 points and three blocks in a game, tying him for second place in the league in that category this year. . .The Mavs are 8-5 at home and 6-3 against the East. . . The Mavs’ 17-7 record is their best start after 24 games since they were 17-7 after 24 games to start the 2014-’15 season. . . The Mavs are in first place in the Southwest Division. . .Against Miami, the Mavs are 31-34 all-time, including a 16-16 record during games played in Dallas.

About the Heat: One of the surprise teams in the NBA this season are the Miami Heat. Miami is seeded second in the Eastern Conference and has the fifth-best record in the NBA. . .The Heat are in first place in the Southeast Division and have won six of their last eight. . .Miami lost at home Friday night to the Los Angeles Lakers, 113-110. . .But on Tuesday the Heat won a wild 135-121 overtime victory over the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday when Miami trailed by six points with 59 second left in regulation, but eventually forced overtime and outscored the Hawks 18-4 in overtime. In that game Miami’s Jimmy Butler (20 points, a career-high 18 rebounds, 10 assists) and Bam Adebayo (career-high 30 points, 11 rebounds, 11 assists)  each posted a triple-double, and teammate Duncan Robinson tied a franchise record with 10 made 3-pointers en route to scoring a career-high 34 points. Rookie Kendrick Nunn added a career-high 36 points for the Heat.  Miami trailed 22 unanswered points — the last six in regulation and the first 16 in the overtime session – in flying past the Hawks. . .The Heat have seven players who have played at least 10 games averaging more than 11 ppg, including Butler, who averages 20.7 ppg, 6.7 rpg and 6.8 apg. Nunn is averaging 16.2 ppg and Adebayo averages 15.1 ppg 10.6 rpg. . .The Heat has won the last four meetings against the Mavs. . .Miami is tied for eighth in the league in fewest points allowed at 1064 ppg.

Twitter: @DwainPrice

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