Fixture: Dallas Mavericks vs Boston Celtics
Date & Time: Wednesday, December 18, 2019, 9:30 PM ET (Thursday, 2:30 AM GMT)
Venue: American Airlines Center, Dallas, Texas
The third best team in either conference will face each other on Wednesday. The Celtics had lost their second game in a row against Philadelphia 76ers on Thursday. Their win-loss record in the season so far reads 17-7. Boston will be looking to get back to winning ways on Wednesday. They will take confidence from the fact that they had beaten Dallas at home. And this time, the Mavericks will be without Luka Doncic, who has been at the cusp of everything good for Dallas this season.
Doncic’s ankle injury is set to keep him away for a few weeks. Although his absence is worrying for them, they had an impressive victory over Milwaukee Bucks the other night, in absence of their Spanish superstar. As many as six players were in double digits for the Mavericks when they stopped Milwaukee’s remarkable run of 18 consecutive victories. That kickstarted a run of games where they will be facing the top teams in the Eastern Conference. On Wednesday, they will be looking to have a similar impact on the game against the team from New York.
Injury updates & team news-
Injuries: Luka Doncic (Ankle)- Out
Expected starting line-up: Jalen Brunson, Tim Hardaway Jr., Dorian Finney-Smith, Kristaps Porzingis, Dwight Powell
Injuries: Marcus Smart (Eye)- Out, Vincent Poirier (Right hand)- Out, Jayson Tatum (Infection)- Probable, Robert Williams (Bone Endema)- Out
Expected starting line-up: Gordon Hayward, Kemba Walker, Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum, Daniel Theis
Mavericks have one of the best offenses in the league, averaging 118 points per game. It consists of major contributions from Luka Doncic. However, the other player stepped up in his absence and will be looking for similar consistency. Kristaps Porzingis registered a double-double in the previous game with 26 points and 12 rebounds. He was well supported by Set Curry and Dorian Finney-Smith.
As for the Celtics, Kemba Walker has had god season so far. He is averaging a career-high 23.1 points per game and had scored a team-high 29 points in Boston’s previous loss. The Celtics will be expected to go past a shorthanded Mavericks.