Dallas Mavericks vs. Philadelphia 76ers Pick & Prediction MARCH 3rd 2024

Luka Doncic’s latest hot streak hasn’t translated to winning basketball for the Dallas Mavericks.

Doncic has averaged 36.3 points, 9.5 rebounds and 11.8 assists over his past four games. Dallas, however, is just 1-3 during that stretch as it braces for Sunday’s meeting with the visiting Philadelphia 76ers.

The Mavericks had rattled off seven straight wins before losing to the Indiana Pacers and Cleveland Cavaliers. After snapping its modest skid with a victory over the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday, Dallas dropped a 138-110 decision to the Boston Celtics on Friday night.

Doncic finished with 37 points, 12 boards and 11 assists against Boston, while Kyrie Irving added 19 points despite making just 9 of 23 shots from the field. P.J. Washington chipped in 17 points and Dereck Lively II posted 15.

“I think that we can compete with the best,” Mavericks coach Jason Kidd said following the loss. “Not looking at the score, we truly believe that we have the talent to compete. It’s just being consistent and understanding it is hard to win in this league. It’s hard to beat teams in this league.

“You don’t have to play perfect, but you have to stay together, you have to stay consistent, and that’s what we’re fighting to do right now.”

If Dallas wants to turn things around, it will have to do so with little preparation. Kidd noted that the team won’t have time to practice due to the return flight home and Sunday’s game tipping off at noon local time.

Meanwhile, Philadelphia has been weathering the absence of reigning MVP Joel Embiid, who has now missed the past 14 games due to left knee surgery.

The 76ers have dropped nine of those games without Embiid, but they are coming off Friday’s 121-114 win against the Charlotte Hornets.

Tyrese Maxey led Philadelphia with 33 points, and Tobias Harris recorded a 31-point, 12-rebound performance. Kyle Lowry also had a double-double with 15 points and 10 assists for the Sixers, who shot 43.2 percent from 3-point range (19 of 44).

Friday’s performance was a much-needed one for Harris, who had averaged 10.8 points on just 31.3 percent shooting overall in his previous five games. He also made just 4 of 17 3-pointers (23.5 percent) during that span.

“At the end of the day, I always say, you gotta figure it out,” Harris said. “You gotta figure out ways to be great for your group and to help your team win and figure out ways that you can play at your best.

“I’ve really been focusing on that these last few days. … I’m a student of the game. I want to figure out ways to help our team win.”

Sunday marks the finale of the two-game regular-season series between the teams. The Mavericks came away with a 118-102 victory on Feb. 5 behind 23 points and eight assists from Irving.

Kelly Oubre Jr. paced Philadelphia with 19 points in the previous meeting. Harris had 17 points and Maxey netted 15.

–Field Level Media

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