MAVERICKS (19-17) AT DENVER NUGGETS (21-15)
Time: 9 p.m.
Place: Ball Arena, Denver
TV: FSSW, NBA TV
Radio: ESPN 103.3 FM; Univision 1270 AM (Spanish)
About the Mavericks: This is the second of a short two-game trip for the Mavs before they return home to play two games against the Los Angeles Clippers – on Monday and Wednesday. The Mavs opened this trip with Thursday’s 116-108 loss in Oklahoma City. . . Dallas got into early trouble against the Thunder when it fell behind, 35-19, after the first quarter. OKC led by as much as 21 points (80-59) with 5:07 left in the third quarter. Although the Mavs eventually closed the deficit to 103-101 with 1:58 remaining in the game, they couldn’t overcome that early slow start along with 10 missed free throws. . .Josh Richardson (27 points, six assists), Jalen Brunson (26 points), Tim Hardaway Jr. (24 points six rebounds) were the heavy hitters for the Mavs in the loss to the Thunder. . .Mainly because of the density of the schedule — and the fact that this was the last leg of a back-to-back — Luka Doncic (right ankle, injury recovery) and Kristaps Porzingis (right knee, injury recovery) did not play in the game against OKC. The Mavs are now 3-3 all-time when both Doncic and Porzingis do not play in the same game. . .The Mavs are currently the No. 8-seed in the Western Conference and are just three games in the loss column behind the No. 4-seeded Clippers. . .Dallas has been extremely impressive lately with wins in 10 of its last 13 games. . .The Mavs have split two games against the Nuggets this season, and Doncic is averaging a triple-double – 36.5 ppg, 10 rpg and 14.5 apg – in those games. The two-time All-Star had 38 points, nine rebounds and 13 assists in a 124-117 overtime win in Denver on Jan. 7, and added 35 points, 11 rebounds and 16 assists during a 117-113 loss at home to the Nuggets on Jan. 25. . .The Mavs are 9-9 on the road this season and are averaging 111.8 ppg while their defense has allowed 112.2 ppg.
About the Nuggets: Denver has been on a roll lately. With Friday’s 103-102 win at Memphis, the Nuggets have emerged victorious in five straight games, and all of the victories came on the road. The streak started with a 126-96 blowout victory at Oklahoma City on Feb. 27. Jamal Murray (26 points, five assists), Nikola Jokic (19 points, 11 rebounds, 13 assists) and Michael Porter Jr. (20 points, 10 boards) led the charge for Denver in that game. . .Jokic collected 39 points, 14 rebounds and nine assists, Murray tallied 24, and Porter added 17 points and 15 rebounds to lead the Nuggets to a 118-112 win in Chicago on March 1. . .Jokic picked up another triple-double during a 128-97 drubbing of the Bucks in Milwaukee on March 2 as he finished with 37 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists. . .Porter continued his impressive showing this season on March 4 when he poured in 24 points and grabbed 11 rebounds to pace Denver to a 113-103 victory in Indiana. Also in that contest, Murray scored 23 points and Jokic added 20 points, 12 boards and eight assists. . .During the seven-point loss in overtime to the Mavs on Jan. 7, Jokic finished with 38 points and 11 rebounds, and Murray added 21 points and nine assists. . . In Friday’s triumph over Memphis, Jokic contributed 28 points, 15 rebounds and seven assists, and Will Barton and Porter scored 21 points apiece. . .This is the first of a five-game home stand for the Nuggets. The home stand includes a Monday game against Indiana, a Wednesday contest against Charlotte, and wraps up with a game against Chicago on March 19 and against New Orleans on March 21. . .During Denver’s four-point victory over the Mavs in Dallas on Jan. 25, Porter came off the bench and fired in 30 points as the Nuggets’ bench outscored the Mavs’ bench, 63-28.