It may not have completely rivaled this weekend’s four down-to-the-wire NFL playoff games. But Luka Doncic and Ja Morant put on a spectacular performance of their own on Sunday night for the sellout crowd of 19,701 inside American Airlines Center.

Doncic maneuvered for 37 points, 11 rebounds, nine assists and three steals and the Dallas Mavericks made quick work of Memphis for a relatively easy 104-91 victory over the much-improved Grizzlies. Morant countered with 35 points, a career-high tying 13 rebounds and six assists as the Grizzlies lost for the third time in five games after they had strung together 11 straight wins.

In winning the season series against Memphis, 3-1, the Mavs have emerged victorious in 11 of the last 13 games while padding their record to 27-20 going into Tuesday’s game in San Francisco against the Golden State Warriors. They also inched within four games of Memphis (32-17) for the top spot in the Southwest Division.

With Doncic paving the way, the Mavs never trailed in this game. It was one of those games where whatever Morant did, Doncic could do it better – and vice versa.

From a fan’s perspective, it was entertainment at its finest and well worth the price of admission.

“No matter what the stage, we knew Ja and Luka were the focal points and those two showed up tonight and put on a show,” coach Jason Kidd. “Luka was finding guys, Luka was aggressive, and then I know he would want me to say this, he was great on defense.

“He had the total package today. Not just with his stats, but defensively he was in the right place. He was great tonight.”

LukaDoncic had 11 points in the third quarter when the Mavs built their lead to 68-46 with 5:31 left. And he added 12 more points in the fourth quarter, including a steal and breakaway layup that kept the lead at 85-68 with 8:50 remaining.

Although he said his teammates were on his case for not dunking the ball on that particular play, Doncic defended the work he’s done on the defensive end of the floor.

“I actually think I’ve gotten way better defensively,” he said. “I’ve been more active. Our team defense has been helping me get better.”

The Mavs clogged up the middle and blocked a season-high 12 shots against a Memphis team that leads the NBA in blocks at 6.4 per game. Kristaps Porzingis finished the night with 15 points, eight rebounds and a season-high six blocks as he made life miserable for the Grizzlies around the basket.

“He was great protecting the rim, changing shots,” Kidd said of Porzingis. “The first three or four (Memphis) shots, we gave up some offensive rebounds because he either blocked shots or changed shots.

“It’s just unfortunate that he fouled out, but I thought he was great on both ends.”

So, too, was Doncic, who said he doesn’t get caught up in playing against players like Morant who frequently draws a lot ofKP headlines.

“I play every game to win,” Doncic said. “Sometimes you’re going to play better, sometimes worse.

“He’s an amazing player. I’m glad we got that win today.”

Dorian Finney-Smith, who spent a lot of time chasing Morant, also said he doesn’t think about the breathtaking plays that occur between Doncic and Morant during the course of a game.

“I don’t really pay no mind just because when Luka scores we look good, but when Ja scores we look bad,” Finney-Smith said. “And l’m guarding him. But we did a good job.

“Ja draws a lot of attention, so when he got the ball I feel like everybody did a good job of making it tough for him. Maxi (Kleber) is a great shot blocker and KP is a good shot blocker, so I feel like we’re one of the best shot-blocking teams, too. We did a good job tonight, even though (Morant) still had (35), but I feel like it was a tough (35).”

The Grizzlies shot just 37.4 percent from the field and this was the 24th consecutive game the Mavs have held an opponent under 50 percent shooting. Memphis, who came in fourth in the league in scoring at 112.1 points per game, also was just 4-of-24 from downtown.

Doriannd the Mavs prevailed despite getting outrebounded, 50-42, including 21-9 on the offensive end of the court.

“You’ve got to give them credit,” Grizzlies coach Taylor Jenkins said. “They had 12 blocked shots, so their activity around the rim was really good.

“Obviously, they made some big-time shots. Dončić is obviously a heck of a player.”

Doncic, who injured his neck in last Thursday’s game against Phoenix, wore a protective piece of equipment around his neck during the game and had a heating pad over his neck during timeouts.

“It’s still stiff pretty much, but once you get warm it’s a little better,” Doncic said. “But just keep working on it. It’s a muscle, so it’ll be better.”

The Mavs got 13 points from Jalen Brunson. They also continued a trend of not losing two straight games since losses to Milwaukee and Utah on Dec. 23 and Dec. 25, respectively.

“We’re chasing (the Grizzlies) — they’re ahead of us in the standings,” Kidd said. “We won the (season) series, also it’s a bounce-back game (after losing to Phoenix), and that’s something with this group.

“We’ve taken pride in coming back after a loss and not to lose two in a row, and we haven’t done that for a month. That just shows growth, that shows the character of that group in that locker room, so there’s a lot of positives to take from this game this evening.”

And one of the positives is that Doncic out-dueled Morant.KP

“You talk about two young point guards that play the game the right way,”  Kidd said of Doncic and Morant. “I think it’s great to see two young players who can play the game and who can dominate the game by not just scoring, but also passing the ball.

“(They) will do anything to win, so it’s great to see the game have two young point guards that can dominate the game. Ja causes a lot of problems as the opponent, and I would say Luka does the same thing.”

They certainly did that Sunday night.

Twitter: @DwainPrice

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