The Dallas Mavericks have been plagued by injuries in recent games but saw their stars Kristaps Porzingis and MVP contender Luka Doncic return to their lineup in their 127-106 win against the OKC Thunder.
The Boston Celtics, meanwhile, are coming into this game off a 109-115 loss against the New Orleans Pelicans. In the absence, Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum and Kemba Walker combined for 57 points, but that was not enough for a win. Brown is expected to return against the Dallas Mavericks.
Fixture: Dallas Mavericks vs Boston Celtics - NBA Season 2020-21.
Date & Time: Wednesday, March 31st, 2021; 7:30 PM ET (Thursday, April 1st; 5:00 AM IST).
Venue: TD Garden, Boston, MA.
Dallas Mavericks Preview
The Dallas Mavericks, who are seventh in the Western Conference, look set for a deep playoff run. In Porzingis and Doncic, they have two stars more than capable of winning them games singlehandedly.
Both are scoring more than 20 points per game, with Doncic starting all but five matches for the Dallas Mavericks this season. Willey Cauley-Stein, Tyrell Terry and JJ Reddick remain out, but Tim Hardaway Jr.’s form from off the bench should more than make up for their absence.
Key Player – Luka Doncic
Luka Doncic has provided the Dallas Mavericks with quite a few highlight reels of late. He is averaging close to a triple-double and is a legitimate contender for the 2021 NBA MVP award.
Doncic’s impact on the team can be compared to that of Stephen Curry on the Golden State Warriors. The Dallas Mavericks have lost four of five matches in the absence of Donic. After returning from a two-game absence, the Dallas Mavericks returned to winning ways.
Dallas Mavericks Predicted Lineup
Point Guard - Luka Doncic l Shooting Guard - Josh Richardson l Small Forward - Tim Hardaway Jr. l Power Forward - Dorian Finney-Smith l Center – Kristaps Porzingis.
Boston Celtics Preview
Quite a few things have gone wrong for the Boston Celtics in recent weeks. They were supposed to be title contenders but currently have a 23-24 record. Marcus Smart’s injury concerns led to the Boston Celtics scurrying for reinforcements before the trade deadline.
The Boston Celtics have added depth to the roster in the form of Moritz Wagner and Evan Fournier but missed out on Aaron Gordon.
It will be interesting to see if they can turn their season around and rekindle their playoff hopes. Jaylen Brown’s return to the lineup should be a step in the right direction.
Key Player – Jayson Tatum
Jayson Tatum has come good in recent weeks for the Boston Celtics and is currently shooting at well above 40% from the deep.
He has averaged more than 30 points per game in his last three outings and has been helping out defensively as well.
Jayson Tatum has been criticized for lack of consistency, but the Boston Celtics have had their injury woes this season. Now, with all of their key stars available, Tatum and co. should be looking to help their team salvage what remains of the season.
Boston Celtics Predicted Lineup
Point Guard - Kemba Walker l Shooting Guard - Marcus Smart l Small Forward - Jaylen Brown l Power Forward - Jayson Tatum l Center - Robert Williams III.
Mavericks vs Celtics Match Prediction
The Dallas Mavericks recorded a comfortable victory in their last outing, as they were able to count on all their key players. Doncic has been in frightening form, while Porzingis has also been lethal all season.
The Boston Celtics, meanwhile, have struggled in recent weeks, although their recent moves should help them improve. Overall, in what is expected to be a close match, the Dallas Mavericks appear to be the slight favorites, considering their better recent form.