That game was so early in hand is impressive considering the Mavericks found themselves down 32-31 after the first quarter. Dynamic play, particularly from Luka Doncic and Christian Wood, in the middle of the game sealed the victory.
Here are a few numbers from tonight’s game:
65: combined points from Doncic and Wood
The pair played fantastic together and fantastic apart. In many ways tonight’s performance is what fans imagined when the Mavericks traded for the big man. The Trail Blazers could do nothing to slow the Doncic-Wood two man game.
They combined for 43 first half points and 65 over the course of the game — and this is with Luka (33 points, six rebounds, nine assists) sitting the entire fourth and Wood (32 points, 12 rebounds) playing just the beginning. It was the first time the Mavericks have had a duo score 30-plus points each in game in over a year.
With Maxi Kleber out indefinitely, and Dwight Powell banged up as well (left tonight’s game with a leg injury), the Mavericks need to emphasize this growing chemistry between Doncic and Wood.
42: team three-point percentage
For all their struggles, when this team is connecting they are tough to beat. The Mavericks went 18-of-43 from three tonight, with eight different players hitting a three.
On night’s like tonight the confidence is infectious, the ball movement crisper, the rhythm fluid. Non-Luka starters went 7-of-15, with Spencer Dinwiddie and Tim Hardaway Jr. contributing 13 and 17 points respectively. It was even output across the board.
11: wins against teams over .500
The Mavericks continue to play the good teams well. This win marks an 11-7 record against teams with a winning record. It is confounding, as they also hold a 4-7 record against losing teams.
It tells the tale of this season. This is what provides hope when they reach the playoffs, that they will compete. And for all that hope, it’s what provides the anxiety that losing to all the bad teams will prevent them from getting there in the first place. But for tonight, we revel in this solid Mavericks victory.
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