Another 30-point game by Doncic leads Mavericks past Jazz
DALLAS (AP) — Luka Doncic scored 33 points, his seventh consecutive game of at least 30 to begin the season, reserve Christian Wood added 17 of his 21 in the second half and the Dallas Mavericks beat the Utah Jazz 103-100 on Wednesday night.
Doncic also had 11 assists while becoming the third NBA player to score 30 or more points in his team’s first seven games of the season, the first since Wilt Chamberlain in 1962-63.
When asked to reflect on the streak, Doncic rubbed his beard and hesitated before answering.
“I don’t know. I’m trying to win games,” Doncic said. “The player that scores more, you’re going to win the game. I think today was one of the best games that I’ve played. Not forcing a lot. Sharing the ball.
“I always hear Wilt Chamberlain, so he’s always there. It’s great. I just wished to play in the NBA. This is really a dream for me. Couldn’t be happier just to play basketball, to do my job, and that’s it.”
Chamberlain also did it beginning 1959-60, and Jack Twyman did it that same season.
The most recent player to score 30 or more in six straight was Michael Jordan in 1986-87.
“I think it’s special when you talk about M.J. and Wilt,” Mavericks coach Jason Kidd said. “It’s rare air. We get to see that on a nightly basis, so that’s pretty cool. A 23-year-old kid that’s at this level.
“It just shows the focus that he has. He’s carrying the team and putting the team in position to win.”
First-year Jazz coach Will Hardy said of Doncic: “His body control, his strength, his ball-handling, his size makes him a really tough matchup. And I think that’s why every night when you watch him play and look at the box score, his stats are pretty alarming if you’re one of the other teams.”
The Mavericks rallied from a 15-point, third-quarter deficit to take the lead for good at 86-84 on Josh Green’s 3-pointer from the left corner with 7:48 to play.
Reggie Bullock’s 3-pointer from the left corner with 35 seconds left — his only points of the game — gave Dallas a 103-98 lead. Bullock missed his previous three shots, all from behind the arc.
“It just shows the trust that his teammates and the coaches, everyone, has in Reggie,” Kidd said.
Jordan Clarkson scored 22 points and had a season-high eight assists for the Jazz, but his 3 from the left corner at the buzzer fell short.
The Mavericks (4-3) have their first winning streak of the season at two games.
The Jazz (6-3) came in on a two-game winning streak, surprising many after trading away All-Stars Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell during the offseason from the team that lost to Dallas 4-2 in the first round of last season’s playoffs.
Jazz: Collin Sexton scored 19 off the bench, and Lauri Markkanen added 14. … Utah went into play second in the NBA with 15.1 3-pointers per game. After hitting six in the first period, they finished 10 for 30.
Mavericks: Dwight Powell, another reserve center behind JaVale McGee, was a plus-25 with nine points and five rebounds in 19 minutes. … Kidd resorted to zone defense as Utah raced to 35 first-quarter points. “We’re working on that since we can’t guard man-to-man,” Kidd said.
Jazz: Visit the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday.
Mavericks: Host Toronto on Friday.
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