The Mavericks bounced back from Friday’s blowout loss in Denver with a solid, shorthanded win on Sunday, beating Sacramento 105-99.

Kristaps Porzingis (back) was out for the third game in a row and Maxi Kleber either got a back strain or sympathy pains in the first half and was unavailable the rest of the way (more on that in a moment).

That meant the Mavericks had to be a little more creative with lineups, but they survived it.

So here’s our takeaways from the Halloween contest that pushed their record to 4-2.

GROWING FANGS AT HOME: As you have read in this space many times, it’s too early in the season to get worked up over numbers, good or bad. But the fact that the Mavericks are 3-0 at home is an excellent sign. “At the beginning of the season, coach Kidd noticed that we weren’t as good a home team last year versus away,” shooting guard Tim Hardaway Jr. said. “We just want to make sure we do a great job of making sure that when guys come in here, it’s not going to be easy. We want to put our foot down to show we mean business when we’re at home.” So far, so good. But the price of poker goes up Tuesday against Miami, which will bring a 5-1 record into American Airlines Center (2-1 on the road).

GETTING A SOLID START: For the first time this season, the Mavericks didn’t trail after the first quarter. They jumped out to a lead and while Sacramento got in front briefly in the third quarter, the Mavericks were in charge virtually the whole night. Let’s hope they learn to appreciate that and make first-quarter leads a more common occurrence.

ABOUT THAT SHOOTING: The Mavericks are shooting 40.4 percent from the field. That’s a terrible number. Yet they’ve been able to overcome it so far. They are shooting 31.2 percent from 3-point range. Again, not a number that’s going to strike fear into any opponent. “As a team, we know,” said Hardaway. “But we know offense isn’t going to carry you.” But defense will, at least at times. And so far, it has. As Jason Kidd said, they know the offense is not going to be an issue long term. “As much as we like the wide-open looks we’re getting on offense, they’re going to fall,” he said.

LET’S BE FRANK: Perhaps the biggest surprise of the young season is Frank Ntilikina. More specifically, the fact that he’s hit 5-of-12 3-pointers (41.2 percent) in 61 minutes of playing time. And this is from a guy who has a reputation as a defensive whiz who can’t shoot (32.8 percent for his career). “Everyone gets labeled in this league for whatever reason, but Frank’s a basketball player,” Kidd said. “He’s not just a defensive player. You look at the things he’s given us offensively, it’s been great and when you look at the rotation, you have to play him.” You can call it riding a hot hand or whatever you want. Getting quality production from a guy who was one of the last players to make the final roster is an absolute gold mine.

Twitter: @ESefko

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