BOSTON CELTICS (15-15) AT MAVERICKS (14-15)
Time: 6:30 p.m.
Place: American Airlines Center, Dallas
Radio: ESPN 103.3 FM; Univision 1270 AM (Spanish)
About the Mavericks: This is the second leg of a back-to-back for the Mavs, who are just 1-4 on the second end of a back-to-back. After tonight, the Mavs open a three-game road trip starting Thursday at Philadelphia. . .The Mavs are coming off Monday’s 102-92 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies and have won five of their last six games. The 92 points are the third-fewest the Mavs have allowed this season, topped only by the 73 points they gave up to the Los Angeles Clippers on Dec. 27 and the 83 points Miami scored on Jan. 1. . .Because games last week against Detroit and Houston were postponed due to severe weather, Monday was the Mavs’ first contest since they lost at home to Portland, 121-118, back on Feb. 14. . .Tim Hardaway Jr. tallied 29 points to lead the Mavs against the Grizzlies, Luka Doncic finished with 21 points, seven rebounds and five assists, and Jalen Brunson chipped in with 19 points and seven boards. Coach Rick Carlisle said: “It was one of our best defensive games of the year and that was great to see. I just thought we had a real presence from the beginning. Boston coming in here – the second night of a back-to-back (for the Mavs) at home – they’re an angry team. They lost a pretty substantial lead in New Orleans, so we’ll get their best game and it’ll be another good test for us.”. .The Mavs are now ninth in the Western Conference standings and are just one game behind eighth-place Golden State and a game-and-a-half behind seventh-place Denver.
About the Celtics: Boston comes into tonight’s game following a devastating road loss against the New Orleans Pelicans on Sunday. The Celtics were cruising along and actually led that game by 24 points with 6:29 remaining in the third quarter. But everything unraveled after that and the Celtics wound up losing, 120-115, in overtime. . .Jayson Tatum (32 points, nine rebounds) and Jaylen Brown (25 points, six rebounds, nine assists) led the way for the Celtics against the Pelicans. . .This is the second game of a three-game road trip for the Celtics, who play in Atlanta on Wednesday before returning home and starting a four-game homestand on Friday against the Indiana Pacers. The Celtics are only 7-10 on the road this season. . .The talent-rich Celtics have been struggling this season and actually have been under-achieving. . .The Celtics enter tonight’s game with losses in six of their last nine games. The lone wins during that period have come against the Toronto Raptors (120-106 on Feb. 11), the Denver Nuggets (112-99 on Feb. 16) and last Friday against the Hawks (121-109). Meanwhile, four of the losses came against teams that wouldn’t be in the playoffs if the postseason festivities started tonight. In addition to the Pelicans, the Celtics have sustained recent losses to the Detroit Pistons (108-102 on Feb. 12), the Washington Wizards (104-91 on Feb. 14) and last Wednesday to the Hawks (122-114).
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