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3 things to watch for when the Mavericks host the Grizzlies

It’s the first game of a home-and-home that could have large lottery day implications.

NBA: Memphis Grizzlies at Dallas Mavericks Andrew Dieb-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Mavericks (31-47) are fresh off a heartbreaking loss Wednesday night and host the Memphis Grizzlies (31-47) in the first game of a home-and-home between the two teams.

In the last matchup, the Grizzlies handed the Mavericks an embarrassing loss, beating Dallas in the American Airlines Center 111-81. The Mavericks shot 30 percent from the field and connected on only seven of their 40 hoisted three-point attempts. On the other side, the Grizzlies shot 50 percent from the field and 41 percent from deep.

Here’s what to watch for as these two teams battle for the third time this season.

Who out-tanks who?

After 78 games the Mavericks and Grizzlies sport identical records, and these next two games could determine lottery odds in May. The Mavericks haven’t put on the tanking display this year like they did last season, but with the stakes getting higher each game, who knows what bag of tricks Rick Carlisle will pull out.

The Grizzlies’ star, Mike Conley, has missed the past two games with a left ankle ailment, and he appears doubtful for tonight’s tilt. If it’s any indication of the state of the Grizzlies, Chandler Parsons is Memphis’ leading scorer the past two games at 16.5 points per contest.

Luka Doncic’s shooting

It’s hard to find many blemishes on Doncic’s historic rookie season, but his shooting has been below average. It’s gotten worse as the season has progressed, and it’s bottomed out at 23 percent from deep in the month of March. The shooting woes can be attributed to fatigue and poor shot selection, but it’s nothing to be overly concerned with. Still, it would be nice to see Doncic attempt just as much, if not more, free throw attempts as triples.

Trey Burke off the bench

Likely considered the final throw-in piece of the Kristaps Porzingis trade, Burke has fit in nicely with the Mavericks as a spark plug off the bench. Specifically in the last three games Burke is averaging nearly 18 points and six assists while shooting 51 percent from the field including 40 percent from three on five attempts per game. The NBA journeyman is playing good basketball at the right time as he enters free agency this summer.

How to watch

The game tips off at 7:30 CT and can be watched on Fox Sports Southwest or NBA League Pass.