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WHY THIS GAME MATTERS
Sunday’s matchup against Dallas is the last of a three-game homestand for the Blazers, who then travel to play at Utah on Christmas Day followed by a game at Golden State on Thursday. With the Blazers hosting the Mavericks, who have been struggling as of late, this is a chance for Portland to improve its 12-5 home record before hitting the road and an opportunity to regroup after Friday’s home loss to the Jazz.
Blazers looking to bounce back
Portland suffered its worst home loss in nearly 14 years (34 points to Spurs on 12/30/2004) after the Jazz defeated the Trail Blazers 120-90 on Friday night. The loss ended the Blazers' overall three-game winning streak and five-game home winning streak. Damian Lillard had 19 points on 7-of-16 shooting, while CJ McCollum was held to 12 points on 5-of-15 shooting including 0-for-3 from deep. As a team, the Blazers committed 14 turnovers that led to 21 Utah points.
Dallas riding a five-game skid
Sunday’s game in Portland will be the finale of a four-game West Coast trip for the Mavericks. It will also be the second night of a back-to-back. Saturday night at Golden State, the Mavs had a scare when rising star Luka Doncic went flying into a chair behind the basket late in the third quarter. The Mavs rookie left the game in the fourth quarter as Dallas lost 120-116 to the Warriors. After the game, Doncic was seen with a slight limp and a bag of ice on his bruised left hip. He told reporters he would see how he was feeling on Sunday in Portland but that he didn’t think the injury was serious. Doncic finished the game with 19 points, three rebounds and five assists in 20 minutes of action.
This will be the second of four meetings between the Blazers and Mavericks this season. In Dallas, the Mavericks beat Portland 111-102 back on December 4th. Luka Doncic led the way for the Mavs with 21 points, while Wesley Matthews added 17. In the loss, Damian Lillard scored 25 of his 33 points in the second half as Portland tried to rally back. CJ McCollum scored 18.
Portland has no injuries to report for Sunday’s game vs. Dallas.
For Dallas, Dennis Smith Jr. (right wrist sprain) did not play in Saturday's game against the Warriors. Luka Doncic (hip) fell into a chair behind the basket during Saturday's game in Golden State. He remained in the game, but then did not play the last six minutes of the contest.
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Where to Watch: NBC Sports Northwest
Where to Watch on the go: Stream the game live on the new MyTeams App
Tip-Off Time: 6:00 p.m.
NBCS NW Coverage: Blazers Outsiders Pregame Show (5:00 p.m.), Blazers Outsiders Postgame Show (immediately after the game).
Point Spread: Portland -7
Radio: 620AM Rip City Radio