The Mavericks didn’t have their two stars when they played the Utah Jazz last month in Salt Lake City. Kyrie Irving, who had just been traded from Brooklyn, had not yet joined the team and Luka Doncic was out with a bruised heel.
Josh Green and Jaden Hardy scored 29 points for Dallas, which beat the host Jazz 124-111 without a hitch.
For the Jazz to pull off a road upset when the two teams meet for the fourth time this season on Tuesday night in Dallas, they will need to be anything but casual.
Utah has lost three straight and is without several key players, including Mike Conley and Malik Beasley, who have been traded.
The Jazz were defeated by Oklahoma City for the second time in three days on Sunday, the same day that the Mavericks lost to the Phoenix Suns.
Jordan Clarkson’s career-high assist performance was the only bright spot for the Jazz in their loss on Sunday. The Utah guard, who has spent most of his career being known as a shooter, showed that his game has changed by giving out 12 assists in addition to scoring 18 points.
Utah will play this as their third of six road games. The Mavericks are coming to the end of a six-game homestand in which they have only won two of their last five games.
Dallas is very close to being in the thick of things when it comes time for the Western Conference playoffs, as the game against the Suns on Sunday demonstrated. After Doncic’s game-tying attempt with three seconds left spun off the rim, Kevin Durant hit a late jumper to break the tie, and Phoenix won 130-126.
Despite suffering from a thigh injury that limited his mobility, Doncic still managed to score 34 points and grab nine rebounds. He told reporters that the injury to his leg has been causing him problems for about a week. He has no idea when it occurred.
Doncic was associated with a disagreement with Suns monitor Devin Booker in the winding down snapshots of Sunday’s down. Technical fouls were assessed to both players.
The Jazz made the announcement on Monday that Collin Sexton, who has a strain in his left hamstring, will be re-evaluated in a week.