LAKERS (30-7) AT MAVS (23-14)
Time: 8:45 p.m. CT
Place: American Airlines Center, Dallas
Radio: ESPN 103.3 FM; Univision 1270 AM (Spanish)
About the Mavs: This is the fifth of a season-high six-game home stand for the Mavs. The home stand concludes Saturday against the Philadelphia 76ers before the Mavs hit the road for a two-game trip to San Francisco to face the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday, and to Sacramento to battle the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday before returning home to host Portland on Friday. . .The Mavs are 3-1 in the opener of a back-to-back. . .Kristaps Porzingis will miss his sixth straight game tonight with right knee soreness. Coach Rick Carlisle said Porzingis could possibly return against the Warriors or Kings. The Mavs are 2-3 without Porzingis. . .Luka Doncic has led the Mavs in scoring and assists the last eight games, and in rebounding the last four games. Doncic has an NBA-high 11 triple-doubles this season and is averaging 29.6 ppg, 9.7 rpg and 9.0 apg. . .Tim Hardaway Jr. has 30 points on 10-of-19 shooting in the last two contests after he missed the previous three games with a left hamstring strain. . .Dwight Powell scored 16 points in each of the past two games. . .The Mavs are 48-112 all-time against the Lakers, including a 28-51 record during games played in Dallas. . .The Mavs are 1-2 against the Lakers this season. The Lakers beat the Mavs in Dallas in overtime, 119-110, on Nov. 1, despite 31 points, 13 rebounds and 15 assists from Doncic. The Mavs returned the favor and defeated the Lakers in LA, 114-100, behind 27 points, nine rebounds and 10 assists from Doncic. The Lakers then caught Dallas on the second end of a back-to-back and won in LA, 108-95, on Dec. 29.
About the Lakers: It’s nearly halfway through the season and the Lakers have the best record in the Western Conference and the second-best record in the NBA behind the Milwaukee Bucks. . .This is the first game of a back-to-back for the Lakers, who play at Oklahoma City on Saturday before returning home to entertain the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday. . .Behind LeBron James, the Lakers have won their last six games and also own the league’s best record on the road at 15-3. James averages 25.1 ppg and 7.8 rpg, and also leads the NBA in assists with 10.8 apg. . .The Lakers may be without their second-best player tonight as Anthony Davis, who suffered a gluteus maximus contusion during Tuesday’s 117-87 victory over the New York Knicks, is listed as questionable to play against the Mavs. Davis averages 27.1 ppg and 9.4 rpg, and is second in the league in blocks with 2.6 bpg. . .If Davis doesn’t play tonight, that could mean more minutes for Dwight Howard, who has been a model of consistency this season while coming off the bench. In the 30-point win over the Knicks Tuesday, Howard contributed eight points, a season-high tying 13 rebounds and also equaled his season high with five blocked shots in 25 minutes. In the Lakers’ previous game Sunday against the Detroit Pistons, Howard had 11 points, nine rebounds and five blocked shots in 21 minutes. . .The Lakers have been on a shot-blocking frenzy lately. In addition to the 11 blocks they accumulated against the Knicks, they had a remarkable 20 blocks – eight by Davis — in the 106-99 win over the Pistons. That’s the most blocks by any NBA team since March of 2001.
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