by Alma Bean
Feature Image: Photo by Melissa Majchrzak of Getty Images.
The Utah Jazz (25-26) returns home for the next five games as their first opponent is the Dallas Mavericks (26-24) for the second time this season.
What to Look For
Utah is returning home for comfort after a disappointing loss to the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday night. Dallas is having to change up their rotations as Luka Doncic sprained his ankle three minutes into his previous game against the Phoenix Suns on Thursday night. Spencer Dinwiddie took over at point guard and nearly reached his career-high in points scoring 36 points. Utah may get a sense of relief knowing they won’t have to defend Doncic, who is second in the league in scoring (33.0 PPG) and fourth in the league in assists (8.4 APG). Though Doncic is out, doesn’t mean Utah is in the clear. Utah will gain some leverage with the return of Kelly Olynyk after an eight-game absence due to a sprained ankle.
Key of the Game
Defending the perimeter. Dallas is third in the league in three-point attempts per game (40.5) but is in the middle of the league in percentage (36.2%). Between Dinwiddie and Tim Hardaway Jr., they both average 14.2 attempts, 5.4 makes on 38 percent from the perimeter. Having Olynyk back and the newfound support of Ochai Agbaji for perimeter defense may cause Dallas to make some uncomfortable passing decisions that could lead to turnovers.
Dallas- Luka Doncic: Out (ankle), Maxi Kleber: Out (hamstring), Christian Wood: Out (hand)
Utah- Johnny Juzang: Out (G League), Micah Potter: Out (elbow)
Where to Watch?
Tip-off between Dallas and Utah will be at 7:00 p.m. MT on AT&T SportsNet