Home Jazz Mavs host Jazz in huge Western Conference showdown

Mavs host Jazz in huge Western Conference showdown

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UTAH JAZZ (40-23) AT MAVERICKS (39-25)

Time: 7:30 p.m.

Location: American Airlines Center, Dallas

TV: BSSW

Radio: The Eagle, 97.1 FM; Univision 99.1 FM (Spanish)

About the Mavericks: At this point in the season, it’s a huge showdown between Mavs and Jazz as only a game and a half separates the two clubs for fourth place in the Western Conference standings. . .The Mavs have assembled an impressive 23-7 record since Dec. 31. The only team with a better record since Dec. 31 are the Phoenix Suns (24-6). . .The Mavs are also 10-2 in their last 12 games. No team has a better record than their last 12 games, although the Miami Heat, Boston Celtics, Denver Nuggets and Jazz are also 10-2 in their last 12 games. . .This is the third in a four-game home series for the Mavs. So far, they’re 2-0 at home after Thursday’s 122-113 win over the Golden State Warriors and Saturday’s spectacular 114-113 win over the Sacramento Kings. After tonight, the home stand ends with Wednesday’s game against the New York Knicks before the Mavs kick off a five-game road trip Friday in Houston. . .The Mavs are 14 games above .500 for the first time since going 39-25 on March 6, 2020 after a 121-96 home win over the Memphis Grizzlies. . .The last time the Mavs had 15 of .500 games happened when Dorian 1355they were 46-31 on April 4, 2015 after a 123-110 home loss to the Warriors. That season, the Mavs reached 19 games over .500 twice—last time at 44-25 on March 18, 2015 after a 107-102 home win over the Orlando Magic—before finishing the season with a 50-32 record. . .Luka Doncic is listed as likely to be back tonight for the Mavs after missing the win over Sacramento with a sprained left toe. The last time Doncic played in a game, he finished with 41 points, 10 rebounds, nine assists and a pair of steals in that nine-point triumph over the Warriors. . .Jalen Brunson (right foot contusion) and Maxi Kleber (right ankle pain) are listed as doubtful for tonight’s game. . With the Mavs and Kings all tied at 111 apiece, Dorian Finney-Smith drained a game-winning three-pointer with just 3.8 seconds left. Spencer Dinwiddie led the Mavs with 36 points and seven assists, Brunson finished with 23 points and six assists, and Finney-Smith contributed 17 points, six rebounds and two steals and was 5 of 11 from three-point range. Also for the Mavs, Josh Green had 12 points and grabbed a career-high 12 boards, and Reggie Bullock added 11 points. . The game against the Kings marked the second time in a week that the Mavs rallied from at least a 19-point deficit to win. The Mavs trailed the Kings by 19 points, and they also trailed the Warriors by 21 points on Feb. 27 in San Francisco before rallying for a 107-101 win. The last time the Mavs won two games in a week after leading by at least 19 points was in February 2006.

About Jazz: Utah will play the second night of a back-to-back tonight. Jazz forward Bojan Bogdanovic was on fire Sunday night as he scored 35 points in 34 minutes in his team’s 116-103 win at Oklahoma City. Bogdanovic converted 11 of 18 shots into three-point territory as OKC simply had to answer for their shootout. The 11 triples thrown by Bogdanovic are a franchise record for the Jazz. Also for Utah in that game, Donovan Mitchell finished with 24 points and 10 assists, Jordan Clarkson came off the bench to contribute 20 points, and Rudy Gobert had 12 points and 17 rebounds. Utah was 23 of 52 from three-point range, including 14 of 25 in the first half. Mike Conley missed Sunday’s game just to rest. . .This is the finale of a five-game, nine-day road trip for the Jazz. The journey began with a huge 118-114 win over the Phoenix Suns on Feb. 27, and was followed by a 132-127 overtime win over the Houston Rockets last Wednesday. The Jazz punctured a tire in New Orleans thisJalen 235 last Friday as they were ambushed by the Pelicans, 124-90, before bouncing back against OKC. . .With a victory tonight, Utah will claim the season series against the Mavs. Thanks to a pair of wins in Salt Lake City, the Jazz are 2-0 against the Mavs this season. . .Utah edged the Mavs, 120-116, on Christmas Day in a game the Mavs entered with a reduced squad. Luka Doncic, Tim Hardaway Jr., Reggie Bullock, Josh Green, Maxi Kleber, Trey Burke and JaQuori McLaughlin all missed this game while under health and safety protocols. Additionally, Dorian Finney-Smith took time off with an illness unrelated to COVID, and Willie Cauley-Stein was sidelined for personal reasons. Mitchell led the Jazz with 33 points and three steals, Bogdanovic scored 25 points, Conley had 22 points, seven rebounds and five assists, and Clarkson finished with 12 points and eight boards. . In Utah’s 114-109 win over the Mavs on Feb. 25, Mitchell had another 33 points and five assists. He was also 11 of 19 from the field, including 7 of 12 from downtown. Also for Utah, Bogdanovic had 18 points, Conley had 15 points, six rebounds, five assists and three steals, and Gobert finished with 14 points, 17 rebounds and three blocks. . .The Jazz and Mavs will also play again at the American Airlines Center on March 27.

Twitter: @DwainPrice