Rockets vs Mavericks Preview
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Video: Roger Patterson sits down with Tim Yeager at the beginning of the NBA season to talk NBA basketball in the state of Texas.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR: James Harden and Luka Doncic, two of the top 4 NBA scorers this season, go head-to-head for the first time this year when the Houston Rockets (11-5) host the Dallas Mavericks (10-5) Sunday afternoon.
The Dallas Mavericks are coming to Houston riding a 4-game winning streak. Through the first month of the season, Doncic is averaging 29.9 points, 10.4 assists and 9.7 rebounds, leading the NBA in triple-doubles (7).
Many members in the National Media recently have compared the 20-year-old's game to Harden. Both are elite-scores, great at getting to the FT line and have lethal step-back threes in their arsenal.
Doncic's has seemed to constantly get himself in the record books. This past Monday night, Luka scored a 42 point triple-double in a win vs San Antonio, becoming the second-youngest player in NBA history to record a triple-double that included a 40-point effort. The youngest being LeBron James.
"This guy can do anything he wants to on a basketball court," Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said Monday of Doncic. "He's having one of those magical runs right now. It's a phenomenal thing to watch. It's a phenomenal thing to be a part of."
Meanwhile, Mavs big man Kristaps Porzingis after sitting out last season with an ACL injury and beginning this year with just one double-double in Dallas' first 10 games, has now come on strong in the team's past five contests, recording a double-double in four of the five games. Porzingis has also been the Mavs protector of the rim averaging 2.29 blocks a game – 4th in the NBA just in front of Rockets' Clint Capela.
The Rockets will have their hands full Sunday afternoon and need to get back in the win column after dropping their last two games. Sunday's game vs Dallas begins a three-game homestand that closes out the month of November.
Fun Fact via ESPN: Harden and Westbrook are both averaging 20-plus points per game. The last time Houston had two players averaging 20-plus points in a season was 2007-08 with Yao Ming (22.0) and Tracy McGrady (21.6).
It's a great time to be a basketball fan, both north and south of I-45.
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