CLEVELAND — If Friday’s 130-110 blowout win over the Portland Trail Blazers is any indication, the Dallas MavericksLuka may have found Luka Doncic’s sidekick.

Backup center Christian Wood came off the bench to pour in a season-high 32 points and grab a season-high tying 12 rebounds in helping the Mavs knock off the Blazers. Wood is the 30th player in the 24-second shot clock era to come off the bench and score 32-plus points and snatch 12-plus rebounds.

Doncic, meanwhile, popped in a game-high 33 points against Portland. It’s the first time two members of the Mavs scored 30 or more points in the same game since Kristaps Porzingis (32) and Doncic (32) accomplished that feat against the San Antonio Spurs on Nov. 12, 2021.

“I think he did amazing on offense, obviously,” Doncic said of Wood. “I think on the defensive end he was really, really paying attention today. Really just focusing, and that’s what helped us a lot.

“He’s big down there, so he helps us a lot. So (Friday), he was really focused on both ends.”

The Mavs will need everyone to be focused on both ends of the court on Saturday at 7 p.m. when they go to battle – again – with the WoodCleveland Cavaliers. The Mavs came out flat Wednesday in Dallas against the Cavs, falling behind 16-2 before losing that game, 105-90.

It was the second-lowest scoring game of the season for the Mavs, who seemed to lack energy for most of that contest. And if that wasn’t enough, the Mavs may have to face the Cavs without two of their centers – Dwight Powell and Maxi Kleber.

Powell suffered a left thigh contusion in the third quarter of Friday’s game against Portland and did not return. As far as his status for Saturday’s game, coach Jason Kidd said: “Yeah, he’s hurt. That’s all I have to tell you. He’s probably out (for the game against the Cavs). I don’t know.”

Kleber, who has a right hamstring tear, definitely won’t play against the Cavs.

“Maxi and DP are like our ironmen,” Wood said. “Like I said before, Maxi is a defensive anchor for us and so is DP.

“Those guys have been great defensively for us all season, so we need them back soon.”

*Luka Doncic has now scored 30 or more points in eight of his last nine games, including the past four. He had 30 points on 9-of-23 shootingLuka during Wednesday game against Cleveland, but bounced back with 33 points on 11-of-18 shots against Portland.

*In Wednesday’s game in Dallas, the Cavs shot 52.6 percent from the field, outrebounded the Mavs, 43-33, and also outscored them in the paint, 52-26.

*Tim Hardaway Jr. bounced back from Wednesday’s three-point showing against the Cavs with 17 points on 7-of-10 shooting against the Blazers. Hardaway made just 1-of-5 shots against Cleveland.

*Donovan Mitchell scored 27 of his game-high 34 points in the first half of Wednesday’s contest against the Mavs.

*On his electrifying tomahawk dunk against the Blazers that was heard around the world, Luka Doncic said: “I was telling (Christian Wood) he is only length and he’s got no bounce. So I had to show him.”

Mitchell*Forward Evan Mobley contributed 14 points, seven rebounds and six assists Wednesday against the Mavs, and center Jarrett Allen added 14 points and six boards.

*The Cavs trailed the Pacers, 94-83, after three quarters, but outscored Indiana, 35-18 in the fourth quarter en route to claiming a 118-112 victory. Donovan Mitchell matched the Pacers’ fourth-quarter scoring by himself when he scored 18 of his game-high 41 points in the final period.

*This is the opener of a four-game road trip for the Mavs. Dallas will also play two games in Minnesota – on Monday and Wednesday – and will finish up this road trip Friday in Houston before returning home to host the Los Angeles Lakers on Christmas.



When: 7 p.m., Saturday

Where: Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, Cleveland

TV: TXA-21

Radio: 97.1 FM The Freak; 99.1 FM Zona MX (Spanish)

Twitter: @DwainPrice

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