Get ready for fireworks in the NBA as two high-octane offensive teams in the Dallas Mavericks and the New Orleans Pelicans take center stage at the Smoothie King Center for their second encounter of the 2020-21 season.
Both sides are coming off losses and will be eager to get back on the winning track with a big win on Saturday night. The Dallas Mavericks won their first matchup of the season against the Pelicans with a 143-130 scoreline, behind Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis, who combined for 82 points.
Their counterparts, Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram of the New Orleans Pelicans, tallied a combined 66 points in the high-scoring battle between the two teams.
Fixture: Dallas Mavericks vs New Orleans Pelicans Prediction - NBA Season 2020-21
Date & Time: Saturday, March 27th, 2021 9:00 PM ET. (Sunday 6:30 AM IST)
Venue: Smoothie King Center, New Orleans, LA
Dallas Mavericks Preview
The Dallas Mavericks will embark on a five-game road trip starting with their matchup with the New Orleans Pelicans on Saturday. Rick Carlisle's side are coming off a disappointing loss to the Indiana Pace. The Mavs went cold from the three-point line, going 8 of 35 from distance for an abysmal 22% shooting display as a unit.
Luka Doncic was sidelined due to tightness in his lower back as his frontcourt partner Kristaps Porzingis led the charge with a 31-point performance in which he also added a whopping 18 boards in 38 minutes from the floor.
With the loss, the Dallas Mavericks have gone 6-4 in their last ten games, resting at the 7th place in the West with a 23-20 record. Both Doncic and Porzingis have been listed as questionable for this contest. The Dallas Mavericks will face an uphill battle if they go up against Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram without their star duo.
Key Player - Luka Doncic
Luka Doncic is the undisputed leader of the Dallas Mavericks and has been the sole reason for their turnaround in the second half of the season. After seeing his team struggle in the loss to the Pacers, Luka Doncic could yet decide to suit up for this game.
The Slovenian has been phenomenal this campaign, raking in nine triple-doubles already. The Dallas Mavericks did not make a big play at the trade deadline, but the team did add veteran sharpshooter JJ Redick to their roster. This is a move in the right direction for Doncic, as Redick's presence on the three-point line could help take some of the defensive attention away from the young All-Star.
Dallas Mavericks Predicted Lineup
Point Guard - Luka Doncic, Shooting Guard - Josh Richardson, Small Forward - Tim Hardaway Jr., Power Forward - Dorian Finney-Smith, Center - Maxi Kleber
New Orleans Pelicans Preview
The New Orleans Pelicans fought valiantly in their previous matchup against the Nuggets but fell to the home team for a 113-108 game-time decision. Zion Williamson sizzled with a career-high 39 points, going 16 of 19 from the field while adding ten rebounds and five assists on the night. Zion's star teammate Brandon Ingram had a rough night though, as he only managed to add 13 points in the loss.
The New Orleans Pelicans can still make a push for the playoffs this season, but it won't come easy in a stacked Western Conference. Stan Van Gundy's side are currently occupying the 12th spot in the West with a 19-25 record, half a game behind the Sacramento Kings. With the playoffs just a few weeks away, the Pelicans will need to find their groove now or risk ending their season in disappointment again.
Key Player – Zion Williamson
Zion Williamson has been putting on an entertaining show for fans to relish but needs to do a better job while closing out games to truly make a difference for his side. Williamson is coming off his best performance of the year and will be looking forward to settling the score against Dallas by evening out the season series.
Zion has been on fire from the field in their recent stretch, averaging an impressive 32 points in his last three appearances for the New Orleans Pelicans. Watch out for him on Saturday night as he could potentially explode for another monster performance.
New Orleans Pelicans Predicted Lineup
Point Guard Eric Bledsoe, Shooting Guard Josh Hart, Small Forward Brandon Ingram, Power Forward Zion Williamson, Center Steven Adams
Mavericks vs Pelicans Match Prediction
The Dallas Mavericks won't stand a chance against their counterparts if Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis are not on the floor for this contest. Zion Williamson is getting better with each passing game and could make a mockery of the shorthanded Mavericks lineup.
On the flip side, if Luka and KP do hit the floor for this game, fans will surely be treated to a high-flying affair that could go down to the wire. But as things stand now, the New Orleans Pelicans enter this fixture as the favorites to come out on top.
Where to watch Mavericks vs Pelicans?
The game between the Dallas Mavericks and the New Orleans Pelicans will be telecast on Fox Sports New Orleans and Fox Sports Southwest (Dallas). Fans can also live stream the game via the NBA League Pass.