Dallas Mavericks vs Philadelphia 76ers: 3 key matchups that could determine the outcome of this encounter - February 25th, 2021 | NBA Season 2020-21

Philadelphia 76ers v Dallas Mavericks
Philadelphia 76ers v Dallas Mavericks
Kunal Sethi

The Philadelphia 76ers host the Dallas Mavericks in Wells Fargo Center on Thursday. The 76ers are flying high with the best record in the Eastern Conference and their title odds continue to improve. Joel Embiid is having a career year this season and is one of the top candidates for the MVP award.

The Dallas Mavericks, on the other hand, aren't winning as many games as they had hoped. They had an underwhelming start to their 2020-21 campaign as Kristaps Porzingis has been dealing with several injury issues. However, the Mavericks have gained some momentum of late and are entering this matchup after winning six of their last seven games.

Dallas Mavericks vs Philadelphia 76ers Match Predictions: Three key matchups to look out for

This game is fairly evenly matched. Both the teams have largely similar type of rosters, which makes this matchup quite exciting. Both, the Dallas Mavericks and Philadelphia 76ers feature a star point guard and center. Both also feature sharpshooting 2-guards and power forwards.

The game's outcome will hinge on these individual matchups and watching some of the best go head-to-head is certainly must-watch television.

#3 Seth Curry (Philadelphia 76ers) vs Tim Hardaway Jr. (Dallas Mavericks)

Los Angeles Clippers v Dallas Mavericks - Game Four
Los Angeles Clippers v Dallas Mavericks - Game Four

Former teammates Seth Curry and Tim Hardaway Jr. form the first key matchup for this game. Both are sharpshooters and great two-guards, so we should expect both of them to guard each other for the majority of the night. Both players are great at coming off screens or launching a deep three in transition.

Curry and Hardaway Jr. are both not known for their defense and will often get lost in easy pick-and-rolls. Given how today's game relies a lot on the three-point shot, a lot of the game will depend on these two players' performances.

#2 Joel Embiid (Philadelphia 76ers) vs Kristaps Porzingis (Dallas Mavericks)

Philadelphia 76ers vs Dallas Mavericks
Philadelphia 76ers vs Dallas Mavericks

The battle of the big man is crucial to any matchup. Joel Embiid and Kristaps Porzingis will fight for supremacy in the paint and their matchup is probably one of the most critical for the game. However, the 76ers are 6th in the league in total rebounds while the Mavericks are underwhelmingly 29th. Joel Embiid is the 76ers' best player and stopping him will be Porzingis' responsibility.

An important thing to note is that Porzingis is listed as doubtful for the game due to a back injury. He didn't play in the Mavericks' last outing against Boston as well. If Porzingis does indeed sit out, it would be a field day for Joel Embiid and he might dominate this game.

#1 Ben Simmons (Philadelphia 76ers) vs Luka Doncic (Dallas Mavericks)

Philadelphia 76ers v Dallas Mavericks
Philadelphia 76ers v Dallas Mavericks

Two All-Star point guards will battle it out in this game. Ben Simmons' major energy will be used in stopping Luka Doncic from going off given how Luka is the Mavericks' best player and an offensive maestro. However, Doncic might not be able to have a very decent production as Ben Simmons is one of the best defenders in the league and a former member of the NBA All-Defensive First Team.

Ben Simmons is not too bad on the offensive end himself. He is one of the most athletic guards in the league and his length and handles make him a threat in the open court. He can get to the rim with ease and his passing ability is excellent as well. Luka Doncic isn't known for his defense which makes this matchup slightly lopsided.

Also Read: Dallas Mavericks vs Philadelphia 76ers: Injury Updates, Predicted Lineups and Starting 5s - February 25th, 2021 | NBA Season 2020-21

Edited by Rohit Mishra
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