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FutureStarr#LukaDoncic and #KyrieIrving Combine For 82 Points in #Dallas' 133-126 Win Over Philadelphia Sixers
Dallas Mavericks All-Star guard duo Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving combined for 82 points in a 133-126 win against Philadelphia 76ers, marking the first time in franchise history that two Mavs teammates scored at least 40 points together.
The win ended a four-game losing streak for the high-octane duo, but it did not completely dispel concerns about their lack of defensive presence.
In one of the most captivating games in recent memory, Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving led the Dallas Mavericks to a thrilling 133-126 victory against Philadelphia Sixers. Doncic scored 42 points and added 12 assists while Irving contributed 40 points and six assists as the Mavs secured their fifth straight win.
Late in the fourth quarter, Dallas Mavericks led by as many as 19 points, giving the Sixers a chance to comeback and secure a close win. But Doncic and Irving proved too much for them - combining for 82 points on 20-of-34 shooting to put Dallas back ahead for good in their first meeting against this season.
Doncic, who had been on the verge of a breakout season last year, shot 13-for-22 from the field and 10-for-12 from three-point range in this win. Additionally, he added six rebounds and four assists to his total.
Doncic delivered an impressive performance, as you'd expect from someone with his talent and potential as both a scorer and playmaker. His vision is far above average for someone his age, and he has developed into an especially gifted passer out of pick-and-roll situations. His arsenal includes wrap passes, pocket passes and off-the-bounce plays among others.
He's been an influential force in the playoffs this year, averaging 23.5 points and 11.5 assists over five games. Additionally, he helped the Mavs maintain a commanding lead over Miami with his dominance at the boards and steady defense.
His numbers are even more remarkable when you consider that he's only 21 years old. With so much potential to develop into an outstanding NBA star, these are truly remarkable numbers.
After a slow start, the Mavs took control of the game in the second quarter with two threes from Reggie Bullock and an off-balance basket by Doncic over Embiid. They were able to sustain that lead and build up an eight-point advantage going into the third quarter thanks to some big plays from Doncic and Irving.
On Thursday night, the Dallas Mavericks scored 82 points to defeat the Sixers behind an All-Star backcourt of Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving. Doncic finished with 42 points and 12 assists while Irving chipped in 40 on 15-22 shooting for a decisive edge.
In the first half, they combined for 45 points before embarking on a 20-4 run to take an 89-71 lead at halftime. Philadelphia made some runs of their own but Miami took control again in the fourth quarter and sealed victory with a 133-126 score over 76ers.
Doncic and Irving have only been together five games, but they already rank among the league's top duos, scoring 123.1 points per 100 possessions when on. That rate is more than twice their team average before the Irving trade and just slightly below 107.9 after it, according to ESPN Stats & Info.
That isn't to say Doncic and Irving haven't had their share of struggles, but it does appear they are progressing. Over the past five games, a lineup featuring Doncic and Irving is shooting an NBA-best 127.8 points per 100 possessions - an amount which would top all scoring teams throughout the full season.
Irving and Doncic both had their moments, yet both struggled on defense. Doncic made a great stop on Joel Embiid's layup in the second quarter, but Irving struggled with shots in the lane for most of the night and made some questionable decisions when facing off on offense.
Thankfully, the Sixers did manage to get stops in the fourth quarter. PJ Tucker started on Doncic and when Embiid tried switching on him, Doncic hit a pull-up three from close range for an 118-108 lead with just four minutes remaining in play.
Maxey had a good game, but the Sixers struggled to stop Doncic, Irving or Embiid from scoring in the paint. They also couldn't stop Bullock from hitting two threes during the first half and Dwight Powell from hitting two more long shots during the second.
Tyrese Maxey started off quickly for Philadelphia in the first quarter, scoring 14 of their initial 17 points. His heroics set off a 15-0 run that helped the Sixers build an early lead that they would hold onto throughout their 118-108 win against the Knicks on Friday night.
Maxey's first-quarter shooting performance wasn't the only highlight of his game, as he also shot flawlessly from the foul line, going 6 for 7 at the line and contributing an assist on Joel Embiid's layup. Additionally, Maxey made all five field goal attempts and hit two 3-pointers during this period.
Maxey had an impressive fourth quarter performance, scoring 16 of his 27 points to lead the Sixers to victory against the New York Knicks on Friday night. His success is encouraging evidence that they have found some success with their lineup.
The Sixers came into this game with a host of injuries to their backcourt, including James Harden (tendon strain in right foot) and Joel Embiid (foot). But Rivers was able to utilize Maxey - who had missed four games due to a sore knee - as an effective spark off the bench.
Maxey had been averaging 16.6 points, yet in his past 10 games he shot 53.3 percent from the floor and 43.5 percent from three-point range. Given that the 76ers already possess talented offensive players like Joel Embiid and James Harden, Rivers should utilize his bench stars more often.
Fortunately for the Sixers, they have a wealth of talented bench players to select from; Maxey being one of them. In his past 10 games, he has averaged 16.6 points, 3.2 assists and 0.9 steals - a career high.
Maxey was an immense help on defense, holding the New York Knicks to just 57.9% shooting in the second quarter. Additionally, he assisted on Joel Embiid's alley-oop in the third quarter that gave Philadelphia its largest lead of the game - 17 points at halftime.
Joel Embiid is unquestionably one of the greatest big men in NBA history, boasting an exceptional combination of agility, soft touch and shot creation ability (particularly from midrange), he consistently surprises opponents. There's simply no other player like him in this league!
Embiid's remarkable performance gave the Philadelphia 76ers their second straight home win, this time over the Denver Nuggets. At 25 years old, Embiid recorded a career high 33 points, 13 rebounds and four blocks to help his team take a commanding 2-1 lead in their first-round series against the Nuggets.
Though Embiid wasn't quite at his usual efficiency level as in Wednesday's win against the Brooklyn Nets, he still managed to be effective and got plenty of help from teammates. Matisse Thybulle had five shots, De'Anthony Melton had four and Shake Milton added two threes as the Sixers managed to stay ahead early on against Denver.
In the fourth quarter, Embiid's game took off. He scored 26 of Philadelphia's 27 fourth-quarter points while shooting 7 for 8 from the field and 12-for-15 at the line while adding five blocks during that span. Plus, Embiid hit a go-ahead fadeaway jumper with 5.7 seconds left to help his team pull away from Denver.
After a slow start, Embiid picked up the pace and guided the Sixers to their third win of the season. He is averaging 29.3 points, 11.5 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game over his last 14 contests.
James Harden being out, the Sixers relied heavily on Embiid to get them back into the game early and he delivered with another dominant performance. He blocked two shots from Denver's Nikola Jokic (21 points and 11 rebounds), as well as scoring 11 of their 13 third-quarter points - including a layup and two free throws - which helped extend their lead by seven late in the period.
In the final minute of regulation, Embiid made the most of his chance by taking a step and hitting a 13-foot fadeaway jumper to give Philadelphia an advantage of three. He was fouled with 26 seconds remaining and Toronto's Daniel Anunoby missed both free throws with less than a second left to play.