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Previewing the Hawks visiting Dallas for a very important game

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Trae Young versus Luka Doncic. What more do you need?

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NBA: Dallas Mavericks at Atlanta Hawks Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

This Saturday, the first of February, the Dallas Mavericks match up against the Atlanta Hawks for the first time in the 2019-20 season. Any time members of the now famous 2018 draft day trade between Dallas and Atlanta get together, it’s a must watch contest.

It will also be Mavericks fans’ first chance to see Hawks rookies DeAndre Hunter and Cam Reddish, the latter of whom was chosen with the first round pick the Mavericks sent to Atlanta to finalize the trade for Luka Doncic. Our partner StubHub wants you to have a chance to see this contest in-person and as of right now there are a ton of great seats available.

The Mavericks are 29-18 at the time of this writing, with a game in Houston still to play Friday night. The Hawks are currently 12-36, second to the last in the league, with a game against the Philadelphia 76ers Thursday evening.

Here are three things to think about prior to the match up:

The month of Luka Doncic and Trae Young is upon us

Each are invitees to the Rising Stars challenge on February 14th, participants in the All Star Saturday Three Point Contest on February 15th, and first-time starters in the All Star game on February 16th. Dallas and Atlanta play each of their contests in February as well.

Young and Doncic are each in the top five in scoring and assists per game, with Young barely edging out Luka in both categories. The constant comparisons between Doncic and Young are unlikely to stop, so watching them play competitively for the first time since December of 2018 should be spectacular.

Can the Mavericks win a home game?

Dallas has won 13 at this point, so it’s a bit of an exaggeration, but as we all know they’ve also lost 12 games. A lot of the losses have explanation. A number do not. Since the start of 2020, the Mavericks are actually under .500 at home, having gone just 4-5 in January.

Whatever is happening with the Mavericks at home, the Hawks are a pretty good team to try to get on track against as they currently hold a 5-20 record on the road. Depending on how things go against Houston on Friday night, the Mavericks may be in strong need of a win. The fairly hapless Hawks, despite their fun-seeming offense, could be in for a rough night against a grumpy Dallas team.

Kristaps Porzingis could stand to hit a shot

It’s possible I’m being overly critical, but it would be nice if Porzingis could hit the majority of his shots. Out of 36 games this season, Porzingis has finished with a field goal percentage equal or greater than 50 percent just eight times.

It’s important to note that the role of Porzingis this season has largely been to stretch the floor. 43 percent of his shot attempts are from beyond the arc where he’s shooting 34 percent, which is fairly manageable, when considering the big picture. He’s just not helped by his fairly putrid shooting from inside the arc where he’s shooting 44 percent. In fact, anywhere that’s not at the rim or the three point line, he’s shooting 29 percent (208 total attempts).

This will work it self out eventually. Perhaps maybe not this season, but eventually. Right?

How to watch

Our friends at StubHub can show you just how many great deals are available days and even hours before the game.

If you can’t go see the game live, then the game is on Fox Sports Southwest or NBA League Pass at 7:30 p.m. CT.

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