Friday, May 24, 2024
World Elite Syndicate

NBA Preview: Utah Jazz (29-40) at Dallas Mavericks (40-29)

Judging by the first two meetings of the Jazz and the Mavericks this season, it is anyone’s guess what will happen Thursday when Utah visits Dallas.

The teams have played two wildly different contests against each other. Dallas crushed visiting Utah 147-97 on Dec. 6. On New Year’s Day, the Jazz made an 87-point turnaround, smashing the Mavericks 127-90 in Salt Lake City.

After the Thursday contest in Dallas, the teams will face off again on Monday in Utah.

Based on recent results, the momentum pendulum could swing in Dallas’ direction. The Mavericks (40-29) have won six of seven outings, while the slumping Jazz (29-40) have dropped three straight and 14 of 17.

Utah’s slide continued Wednesday night in Oklahoma City with a 119-107 loss to the Thunder. The Jazz, who played without Lauri Markkanen and Jordan Clarkson, were within two after three quarters but were outscored 18-6 to start the final period.

The Jazz led 54-53 at halftime.

Collin Sexton paced Utah with 25 points and seven assists, but he was one of only three Jazz players to reach double figures in scoring. John Collins added 16 points and Taylor Hendricks chipped in 12.

The Mavericks are coming off of a win despite a rough shooting night by one of their stars. Luka Doncic compiled a triple-double of 18 points, 16 assists and 10 rebounds but made only 6 of 27 field-goal attempts in a 113-107 road win over the San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday.

Kyrie Irving led Dallas with 28 points as the team reached the 40-win mark and remained in contention for a top-six spot in the Western Conference standings.

Clarkson, who missed Utah’s Wednesday game with a groin injury, notched the Jazz’s first triple-double in 15 years during the Jan. 1 matchup with Dallas. He finished with 20 points, 11 assists and 10 rebounds off the bench for his first career triple-double. It marked the first time a Jazz player reached that milestone in the regular season since Carlos Boozer did so on Feb. 13, 2008, spanning 1,256 games.

The Jazz were a different team at the beginning of 2024, as they were in the midst of winning 12 of 14 games.

World Elite Syndicate

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