The Mavs remained on two consecutive defeats, much lessened without Luka Doncic and six players stuck in the health protocol. But a visit to Oregon will have put them back on the right track.
Against a Portland team that was also largely weakened (deprived of seven players, plus their coach), Kristaps Porzingis and Dwight Powell both had their best game of the season, the first at 34 points and 9 rebounds, and the second at 22 points at 9/11 on shots. Portland’s racket open to the winds, Dallas dominated the proceedings after a one-sided second quarter.
If Damian Lillard (26 points) and Nassir Little (20 points, 10 rebounds) have tried to save appearances, Portland leans heavily and logically (132-117).
WHAT YOU MUST REMEMBER
— The Blazers held a quarter time. Without their coach, Chauncey Billups, the Blazers managed to hang on in the first quarter, but in the second, facing Hurricane Porzingis (17 points in the period), they cracked and were never able to come back to the score . Allowing the Mavs to shoot at 15/21 or 71% including 6/9 at 3-points or 67% in this second quarter “open doors” (38 to 24), Portland has again shown the multiple flaws that crack its collective, dropped at -20 for most of the second half …
— Dallas domineering inside. This match can be summed up in this statistic of points inscribed in the painting, with Dallas winning this duel in the greatest of facilities: 68-30! Behind Porzingis and Powell who only had to conclude at the end of the chain, both authors of their best game of the season, the Mavs had fun the whole game. Even Marquese Chriss, cut by Portland after the preseason, cracked a big dunk in the “garbage time” extended in the last quarter!
— The defense of Portland to absent subscribers. Cashing 38 points in the second quarter, 72 points at halftime and 106 after three quarters, the defense of Portland was again remarkable for its nullity. The slightest acceleration from Jalen Brunson, Dorian Finney-Smith or Frank Ntilikina hurt the Blazers. Josh Green (9 points, 10 assists) drove his opponents crazy with his intensity and speed on the baseline cuts. Without any resistance, inside and out, Portland seems to be waiting for the transfer season …
✅ Kristaps Porzingis. Author of 17 of his 34 points in the 2nd quarter, Kristaps Porzingis had a most peaceful evening. At 12/21 on shots, the Latvian giant had all the shoot tickets he wanted and he was able to take advantage of the many spaces left by the Portland defense to dominate without forcing, and achieve his “season high”.
✅ Dorian Finney-Smith. With 14 points, 9 rebounds and 5 assists, Dorian Finney-Smith had a full game, without having to force 5/8 on shots. Very clean offensively, he also shot his usual work in defense, annoying Damian Lillard and Norman Powell properly.
✅ Dwight Powell. Symbol of the outrageous domination of the Mavs in painting, Dwight Powell finished 22 points at 9/11 on shots, mostly taken between 8 and 12 inches from the circle. At the end of the Texas systems, he feasted on caviar all evening to produce his best scoring match of the year.
⛔ Norman Powell. For Norman Powell on the other hand, it was the soup to the grimace, with a match at 15 points but at 3/12 on the shots, and without any influence on his club. Drawing indiscriminately in the game without any real direction from the Blazers, he clearly lacked judgment.
⛔ Damian Lillard. Like his sidekick Powell, Damian Lillard tried a lot outside, and if he was able to cushion his multiple failures by getting his points on the throws (13/14), Dame still missed out on last night. At 26 points but 5/15 on shots, he carried the ball a lot for very little creation in the end. His 5 passes are thus contrasted by 5 stray balls, and a lot of bad choices in attack in general.
Dallas (16-17) : the Mavs continue their “road trip” with the third of their six stages, in Sacramento on Wednesday.
Portland (13-20) : reception of the Jazz in the night from Wednesday to Thursday.