Luka Doncic did not forget to thank his supporting cast in recording his 61st career triple-double with 40 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists as the visiting Dallas Mavericks beat the Portland Trail Blazers 131-120 on Dec 16.
Tim Hardaway Jr. scored 25 points, Dante Exum and Derrick Jones Jr. had 18 apiece and Markieff Morris chipped in 10 for Dallas, who won for the fifth time in their last six National Basketball Association (NBA) games.
“It’s everybody, it’s not just me. All my teammates helped me get to that (triple-double),” Doncic said. “In the first half I just went for it because they didn’t double me. And in the second half they doubled me, so we just played out of that.
“(The team are) amazing. I can take some rest, too. It’s four-on-three basketball, the court is wide open, so we score a lot of points. We had so many open shots. When they double me, I like it.”
Anfernee Simons had 33 points, eight rebounds and six assists to lead Portland. Jerami Grant had 27 points, Scoot Henderson added 13 and Duop Reath chipped in 11.
The Blazers trailed by as many as 18 in the third quarter and lost their sixth straight.
Portland battled back and cut the deficit to 127-120 with 1min 10sec remaining before Jones scored on Dallas’ next possession to help secure the victory.
Doncic scored 22 points in the opening quarter and had 30 at the half. The Maveicks began the second quarter on a 13-2 run and took a 74-63 lead into the break.
The 74 points marked the fourth time in their last six games that Dallas have scored 70 or more points in the first half.
Doncic has also scored 30-plus points in 10 consecutive games, breaking his own franchise record.
The Mavericks (16-9) are third in the Western Conference, behind the Minnesota Timberwolves (19-5) and the Oklahoma City Thunder (16-8), who also both won their games against the Indiana Pacers (127-109) and the Denver Nuggets (118-117) respectively.
Elsewhere, Stephen Curry saved 16 of his team-high 37 points for the fourth quarter, Klay Thompson buried a pair of late three-pointers and the Golden State Warriors held off the visiting Brooklyn Nets for a 124-120 victory.
Thompson finished with 24 points and four others scored in double figures for the Warriors, who ended a three-game losing streak.
“Steph was sublime down the stretch. That was unreal,” Golden State coach Steve Kerr said. “We’ve seen him do this over and over again but it never ceases to amaze me what that guy is capable of.”
Cam Thomas had a game-high 41 points for the Nets, who had two shots at either a tie or a lead in the final 1:28 before losing for the third time in four outings on a five-game trip. REUTERS