Matchup: Toronto Raptors vs. Dallas Mavericks
Records: Raptors (20-8), Mavericks (19-9)
Where to Watch
Date: Dec. 22, 2019
Time: 3:30 p.m. ET
TV: SN1/E/O/W/P (Canada), NBA League Pass (USA)
Location: Scotiabank Arena, Toronto, Ontario
Both the Raptors and Mavericks are expected to be short-handed when the teams meet on Sunday.
Whereas the Raptors will be without Pascal Siakam, Norman Powell and Marc Gasol, the Mavericks will likely be without Luka Doncic, who has been sidelined since Dec. 16 with a sprained ankle. Doncic is said to be progressing well, but the injury was expected to sidelined him for up to two weeks, making it possible that he won't play again until the end of this month.
Despite not having Doncic, who ranked fourth on our recent MVP ladder, the Mavericks have been on a roll lately. They're 2-2 in the four games Doncic has missed, but their wins came against the Milwaukee Bucks and Philadelphia 76ers, whereas their losses came against the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics.
Kristaps Porzingis has taken his game to another level in Doncic's absence with averages of 23.3 points, 14.3 rebounds and 2.5 blocks in those four games. He's scored at least 20 points and grabbed at least 10 rebounds in each contest, marking the first time in his career that he's had four straight 20-10 games.
Blocks. Dunks. 3s.- Dallas Mavericks (@dallasmavs) December 21, 2019
Find you a big man who can do all three. 🦄@kporzee | #MFFL pic.twitter.com/ZVlmHnSimL
The Raptors will have their hands full trying to slow Porzingis down. According to NBA.com, it was Siakam who took on the responsibility of guarding Porzingis in the first matchup between Toronto and Dallas this season. Gasol defended him the second-most on the team, followed by OG Anunoby and - believe it or not - Fred VanVleet.
With both Siakam and Gasol out, expect one of Anunoby or Serge Ibaka to be the primary defender on Porzingis.
In addition to Porzingis, Seth Curry and Tim Hardaway Jr. have had their moments recently. Curry came up against the Bucks and Celtics with back-to-back 20-point games. Hardaway played well in the two other games, combining to make 11 3-pointers against the Heat and Celtics.
The Raptors will be without Pascal Siakam, Norman Powell, Marc Gasol, Matt Thomas and Stanley Johnson.
The injury report for the Mavericks has not yet been released.
- The Mavericks currently have the best offensive rating in the league. They're scoring at a rate of 116.2 points per 100 possessions this season.
- The Raptors rank just outside the top-10 in offensive efficiency with 109.3 points per 100 possessions.
- Serge Ibaka struggled when he first returned to injury, but he's been much better lately. He scored a season-high 25 points against the Detroit Pistons and followed it up with a 23-point outing against the Washington Wizards.
- Patrick McCaw also played well against the Wizards. He scored a season-high 11 points in the win.
- The Raptors are now 16-0 against teams below .500 compared to 4-8 against teams .500 or above.
- The Mavericks are 13-4 against teams below .500 and 6-5 against teams .500 or above.
Last Time They Played
Date: Nov. 16, 2019
Score: Mavericks 110, Raptors 102
Raptors: Norman Powell - 26 points, 6 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal
Mavericks: Luka Doncic - 26 points, 15 rebounds, 7 assists, 2 steals
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