When the Warriors enter the American Airlines Center Thursday night for their first of two games against the Mavericks, it won't be a matchup of the two dominant Western Conference teams we've seen in the past.
The Warriors are mediocre and are battling numerous injuries that have left them with no true center. The Mavericks are struggling on both ends of the floor and currently sit with a 9-13 record, good for 13th in the West.
But no matter how much either team is struggling as a group, these games are worth watching simply to see Steph Curry and Luka Doncic go head to head.
This season was supposed to be Donic's MPV campaign, but he hasn't quite been living up to those expectations. Still, he's sixth in the league in scoring, averaging 27.3 points, 8.9 rebounds, and 9.6 assists per game. Curry is putting up 28.2 points -- fifth in the league in scoring -- 5.7 rebounds and 6.1 assists per game.
As both teams find their identity, it's crucial that their respective superstars carry the load. Doncic did that Wednesday night against the Hawks, scoring 27 points, grabbing 14 rebounds and dishing eight assists. Curry tried but came up short when he had 38 points in a loss against the Celtics on Tuesday.
Because of the woes the Warriors and Mavericks have been having, Doncic has fallen out of intense MPV conversations, and well, Curry was never there, to begin with. But both players are still playing at the level they were at when they were in the running for to award.
Luka's season stats are just slightly lower than what he put up last year when he led the Mavericks to the playoffs. And Curry is shooting 41.4 percent from distance -- 46.4 percent in the last 10 games. The only difference is their teams aren't winning.
But it's not their fault. They can only do so much without much help. But until they get that help, both Curry and Doncic have to continue to play at a high level to at least give them a chance.
Besides their importance to their teams, Curry and Doncic are just fun to watch. Both can put on a scoring clinic, albeit, in very different ways, but both are equally impressive.
As Doncic isn't known for his shooting, he has mastered the pick-and-roll and can attack the basket with ease. Curry, on the other hand, is the best 3-point shooter in the game, and like Doncic, can also finish at the rim. Both players know how to control the pace of the game and facilitate for others.
In the past, Seth Curry, Curry's brother and Doncic's former teammate, has said Curry and Doncic share the same passion and joy for the game. Besides their dominance, it's a clear similarity in how they play.
So on Thursday night, and then again on Saturday, no, it won't be a battle between two elite teams -- but it will be between two great point guards.