Dallas Mavericks star guard Luka Doncic posted a triple-double on Thursday night to lead his team to a comfortable 132-112 win over the Portland Trail Blazers. Doncic didn't score much but there was no need as he finished the game with 15 points, 10 rebounds and 15 assists.
It was Doncic's sixth triple-double of the season. "Everything starts with Luka Doncic," said Kristaps Porzingis, who had 22 points for the Mavs. "Everything becomes much easier with him on the court."
Doncic and Co. routinely handled the Trail Blazers
A night earlier, the Trail Blazers suffered a heartbreaking loss to the Minnesota Timberwolwes.
"Sometimes the schedule can help you or hurt you," Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd said. "This time it helped us by having a game where we didn't have to sit around and look at each other after last night's performance." The Mavericks wanted to start the game strong and put the Trail Blazers on their back foot.
"We just wanted to make sure we were the ones to come out and punch, and that's what we did early on and it kind of set the tone for the rest of the game," Porzingis said. The Trail Blazers were without their top star Damian Lillard.
"I think guys are fighting and competing hard, whether there's mistakes or not. We're trying to be aggressive. We're trying to figure it out, and we're going to continue do that and play the right way, and live with the results," said Norman Powell, who finished with 19 points for Portland.
The Trail Blazers' defense was hurt by the absences of Nassir Little and Roberto Covington. "We missed them a ton," Blazers coach Chauncey Billups said. "Got off to such a tough start. You give up 40 points in the first quarter, it's really tough to absorb that type of quarter. But I thought we came back in the second quarter and we got back in it. Just fighting uphill all night."