New Orleans Pelicans (4-5) at Mavericks (5-4)
Time: 7:30 p.m., Monday
Place: American Airlines Center, Dallas
TV: FSSW, NBA TV
Radio: ESPN 103.3 FM; Univision 1270 AM (Spanish)
About the Mavericks: This is the finale of a brief two-game homestand before the Mavs hit the road to play at Charlotte on Wednesday and at Milwaukee on Friday. . .After a 2-4 start to the season, the Mavs are suddenly playing their best ball of this season with wins in their last three games. They followed up road wins last week in Houston (113-100) and Denver (124-117 in overtime) with Saturday’s 112-98 victory at home against the Orlando Magic. . .Josh Richardson, Jalen Brunson and Dorian Finney-Smith will each miss their second straight game due to health and safety protocols. . .Maxi Kleber is listed as questionable for tonight’s game because of health and safety protocols. . .Kristaps Porzingis is listed as questionable for tonight’s game. Porzingis has yet to play this season after he had surgery on Oct. 9 to address a lateral meniscus injury of his right knee. . .Luka Doncic was one rebound away against Denver from picking up three consecutive triple-doubles. Doncic recorded a triple-double against Houston, missed it by one rebound against Denver, and added another triple-double on Saturday against the Orlando Magic. Doncic is averaging 26.6 ppg, 9.3 rpg and 8.3 apg. . .Tim Hardaway Jr. has a pair of 30-point games over the past three contests. He scored 30 points against the Rockets off the bench and a season-high 36 points against the Magic as a starter . . . Despite the uncertainty with their health, the Mavericks are 3 1/2-point favorites, according to Bovada.
About the Pelicans: New Orleans opened the season with a strong 4-2 record, but has since dropped three games. . .The Indiana Pacers edged the Pelicans, 118-116 in overtime, last Monday, despite 31 points and eight assists from Brandon Ingram. Zion Williamson tallied 29 points during last Wednesday’s 111-110 loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder. And Williamson contributed 26 points and eight rebounds Friday, but it wasn’t enough as the Pelicans lost to the Charlotte Hornets, 118-110. . .Led by the star power of Williamson, the Pelicans are a very talented up-and-coming young team and should be given strong consideration as a possible playoff candidate this season. . .Ingram made his first All-Star game last season when he also was named the NBA’s Most Improved Player. This year Ingram leads the Pelicans with 24 ppg, 7.1 and 5.8 apg, Williamson is averaging 21.9 ppg and 8.1 rpg and Lonzo Ball averages 12.4 ppg. Also for the Pelicans, Eric Bledsoe is averaging 11.8 ppg and Steven Adams averages 10.3 ppg and 8.9 rpg. . .New Orleans is sixth in the league in points allowed at 106.6 per game, but where they struggle is offensively, mostly because their 16.7 turnovers per game is fourth-worst in the NBA.