DALLAS (AP) – Luka Doncic made his 11th Triple-Double of the season with 20 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists, and the Dallas Mavericks guaranteed themselves a top six finish in the Western Conference to avoid an NBA game next week. with a 114-110 win over Toronto on Friday night.
Kristaps Porzingis, who finished with 21 points and 10 rebounds, made a three-pointer on the first shot of the game and the Mavericks never lost in the regular season home final, although the understaffed Raptors closed late. Toronto had just seven players and was left without top seven scorers – mainly due to injuries, but also because the season came to a close and the Raptors did not even claim a place to play in the East. …
Toronto, 19 points back at the start of the second half, was in the 105-102 range after Malachi Flynn’s three-pointer with three minutes to go, following the Mavericks’ departure after his downtime. But Dorian Finney-Smith responded with three-pointers in favor of Dallas, and Doncic then went for a one-handed shot. Doncic had previously played his own missed short jumper and then had a graceful layup.
Raptors rookie Jalen Harris, a Dallas native who started his second career in the same number of nights, had 31 points to lead Toronto. Flynn scored 26 points.
The Southwest Division winners Mavericks (42-29) are fifth in the West, one game ahead of Portland (41-30) and fifth, with both teams remaining one regular season game. The Trail Blazers have a tiebreak if they finish with the same record as they have won two out of three against Dallas this season.
Teams finishing seventh through tenth in each conference will compete in games next week to determine who gets ahead. The top six teams are getting an extended break after a tight regular season schedule, although due to the pandemic there are 10 fewer matches than usual.
Toronto rookie striker Freddie Gillespie of Baylor made his first start in the NBA, and it happened on the night that Baylor coach Scott Drew and national champion Bears were in attendance to be recognized by the Mavericks. Dallas County officials declared May as Bears Month for the County.
Raptors: Stanley Johnson made a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds. … Toronto have increased their franchise record to 37th in the starting lineup this season. It was the ninth game in a row to use a different starting five.
Mavericks: It was the 36th triple-double of Doncic’s career and is 11th on the NBA’s career list. He is still seven behind Fat Lever in the top 10, but is now three more than Bob Kuzi. … Jalen Brunson finished with 19 points and Finney-Smith with 17. … Dallas lost 12 of their previous 16 games to the Raptors, including 116-93 in Tampa on January 18th.
The Raptors: “Home” regular season finale against Indiana on Sunday in Tampa.
Mavericks: Minnesota Regular Season Finals.
More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/hub/NBA as well as https://twitter.com/AP_Sports